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Thursday, September 21, 2006

2006 Ryder Cup Predictions at the K Club

Boy, just when the Euros had the U.S. right where they wanted them, the tables have turned.

The entire buzz lead up to this Ryder Cup has been:

1) They are deeper 1-12 than the U.S.;
2) They are a more unified team than the U.S.;
3) Tiger doesn't care about this like he does the Majors;
4) They have home field advantage;
5) The US stinks at four balls and will be in a deep hole come Sunday.

Boy how quickly things change.

The Dubliner - a widely circulated tabloid across the pond - woke a sleeping Tiger in the worst way. Everyone associated with golf has seen those photos for about two years now and knows they are fakes. It's one of the most widely spread Internet hoaxes in sports.

What the heck is the Dubliner doing trolling out those in a thinly veiled and marginally tongue in cheek article the week before the Ryder Cup? Well, 1) getting itself sued and sued successfully for defamation. The test is did they know they were fake OR DID THEY PUBLISH THEM WITH A RECKLESS DISREGARD FOR THE TRUTH. Since that Internet hoax existed for two years prior, their only hope is to have a homer Judge rescue them because on the law and facts, they lose at a summary judgment motion.

I know Tiger's lawyer for those cases - it's Mark Lee of Manatt Phelps and Phillips in LA. And let me tell you, that firm is an 8,000 lb. gorilla. The Dubliner is going to get a full broadside and rightfully so. Shame on the Dubliner for such despicable "journalism."

They are also 2) waking the sleeping Tiger. I know I go ballistic if someone even tangentially goes after my girl. Can you imagine how surgical, coldly ruthless, and merciless Tiger will be? For goodness, sake, that's his wife! And boy, isn't Furyk the perfect teammate for Tiger for this mission; equally cold, cunning and precise.

No, to quote Uma Thurman in Kill Bill I, "It's mercy, compassion and forgiveness I lack." Tiger will roar; he'll get four points this Cup.

Now lets debunk a few more myths.

1. The U.S. stinks at fourballs - Guess again...half our matches will be Tiger-Furyk and Phil-DiMarco. Lets say, conservatively, the US goes .500 for those matches. That leaves Toms, who can be competitive paired with Diet Pepsi Machine. He can play with maybe Johnson, Campbell, Cink or Verplank. That leaves the much maligned rookies so;

2. Our rookies scare noone - that's true, but all it will take to tip the balance is one hot guy - perhaps Zach Johnson. But again, this is the Ryder Cup - the place where Paul McGinley, Philip Price and Ignacio Carrido slew Goliaths and won Cup-clinching matches (or at least in Price's case, the difference maker...)

In the last ten years, when has the Ryder Cup ever held true to form? More crazy things happen in these three days than in all four majors combined. We were supposed to dominate in 2002 and 2004.


Last, home field advantage - many years ago when the Euros actually hosted the Ryder Cup at links courses like Birkdale and Lytham, they got the stuffing knocked out of them. Somebody got the seemingly counter-intuitive idea of lets build a gaudy monstrousity of a parkland amusement ride and try to beat them at their own game. Thus, The Belfry was born and has been the site of nary a single Euro loss. The K Club is another travishamockery (that's "travesty-sham-mockery" for those of you scoring at home)of a venue choice with its out-of-place fountains and waterfalls and target style shot requirements. The 80s are still "in" in the biggest way.

This time, that comfort will be like a warm blanket to the US team, especially the rookies. No vicious winds, not alot of strategy, no blind shots or quirky bounces - why not have the event next time at Trump Aberdeen.

OK, OK, I apologize for even joking about that. I meant Trump National of Western Nebraska:):)

NO, the US is doing everything right; keeping their heads down, their noses clean and their mouths shut. With Dubliner-gate, the world perceives them for what they are - mugged brutally like a man minding his own business on a quiet streetcorner. In turn, they respond like professionals - with dignity and quiet resolve. No, the only mis-step I have perceived is that I would have chosen Arron Oberholser over BOTH Cink AND Verplank. I think the choice of both of those players "left a little on the bench." The only other thing that can go wrong is if the rookies don't get into the matches early enough to be comfortable come Sunday Singles.

No, the Ryder Cup rarely if ever holds true to form. The Euros are scrambling and squabbling. The U.S. looks ready. The U.S. looks organized. They will not go quietly and they will acquit themselves early and forcefully. This one is gonna be a donnybrook and the U.S. looks rested and ready.

U.S. 14.5 - 13.5.


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