Congratulations to Inbee Park for winning the Ricoh Women’s British Open, and in doing so, completing the Women’s Career Grand Slam of all four major championships.
Uh, wait a minute. Hold everything. Now that the LPGA has added a 5 major championship, that being the Evian Championship (don’t you just love it how they say, “Ok, now you’re a major”), there’s a little chicken left on that bone. Technically, since there are now 5 women’s majors that are “available in her career,” shouldn’t she have to win all of them to be considered a slam holder?
Insert debate dialogue, or if you’d like to read the LPGA’s position, click HERE.
In any case, many thanks to LPGA commissioner Michael Whan, the LPGA and Inbee for cracking the door open for some much needed discussion if that were to happen on the men’s side with The Players Championship.
Long being tabbed as “Golf’s Fifth Major”, if you think there’s some discussion regarding Inbee and her “slam,” just think of the cluster of questions and mindless chatter that would arise if The Players was officially named a major…..
- Instead of closing on the record, Tiger backs up – Sure, add 2 to Woods’ list of majors with Players won in 2001 and 2013, but with wins in 1974, 1976 and 1978 for Nicklaus, the Bear picks up a “Net One” on Tiger. Now Tiger’s got to win 5 more to tie Jack’s major record which now sits at 21.
- Who’s Slam is in Jeopardy? – The Players wasn’t around when Hogan was beating balls until his hands bled, but it sure was when the Black Knight was on tour. Sadly to say, Gary Player never won one. So, the men’s list drops to only 3 to have won the Slam (Nicklaus, Hogan and Woods), unless…….
- What if you count that only 4 Slam events are needed and you’re in “Slam Heaven” like the LPGA? – Then Lee Trevino is in, having won The Players in 1980, leaving the only major that he didn’t win being The Masters. Mex is adamant that he’s could have won at Augusta if they played the course backwards, from green to tee, where his fade would work to his favor.
- Lastly, what about Hall of Fame implications? – If it takes 2 majors to get you a seat in the World Golf Hall of Fame (unless your name ends in Couples or Wadkins), we’d need to get some sport coats ready for Al Geiberger (1966 PGA and 1975 Players), John Mahaffey (1978 PGA and 1986 Players), Steve Elkington (1995 PGA and 1991 Players), David Duval (2001 Open and 1999 Players), Davis Love III (1997 PGA and 2003 Players) and Justin Leonard (1997 Open and 1998 Players). Lee Janzen would add a Players to his 2 U.S. Opens to have 2 Slam events won, give a +2 to Hal Sutton for his wins in 1983 and 2000, and with Sergio winning in 2008, maybe the committee would give him the Couples/Wadkins exemption now that he’s the “kinder, friendlier Garcia”. Let them in. Heck, let them ALL in!!!
I remembering hearing from someone a the Tour office that hell would freeze over before the Tour would move the Players from its original spot in March to May, as course conditions were ideal in March and couldn’t be replicated.
Don’t bet on them doing a LPGA and one day anointing The Players as the 5th major, but anything’s possible.
It’s 98 degrees outside today, but I suddenly feel a cold chill. Could it be?? Nah.
Topic for conversation for Next Week – With one of the so called “litmus test” items by the PGA of America in order to be a Ryder Cup Captain being having won the PGA Championship, can someone please explain to me why Larry Nelson (with 2 PGA’s on his resume) has never been invited to be the U.S. captain?