June 11, 2006

Wie gets playoff victory over Webb : Great Headline. Except that the winner was Se Ri Pak. Worse part is, that Wie and Pak don't even look alike. Except for that Asian thing.

posted by bolo165 to golf at 06:52 PM - 33 comments

My guess is that it wasn't so much racism as it was writing the header & the lead before the tournament was over. They'll fix that shortly, I have no doubt. Wie was in it right to the last putt, again, but she didn't choke. She made a ton of clutch shots (very nearly enough to win) down the final stretch. (And by my count, that's three top-3 finishes and a 5th place today in the last five majors. But no firsts. She obviously can't win the big one. Let's just put her to death.) But yes, Se Ri Pak won, after taking a year off to get her head together. The fact that she managed to come out the other end of her crippling, Capriatiesque crisis of confidence is a fascinating and inspirational story all by itself. She's a hell of a champion, full value for the win today (her approach shot to within a handwidth on the first playoff hole was phenomenal), and easily one of the very best golfers of her generation. Good on her.

posted by chicobangs at 07:20 PM on June 11, 2006

The thing is Wie can get right to the edge but can't get over the top. She has incredible talent but she can't get through that mental wall. Until she does, she'll never beat the guys. For all of you who will say that 6th is a great finish, second place is the first loser.

posted by dbt302 at 07:56 PM on June 11, 2006

Do we really have to start the Wie bashing again?

posted by forrestv at 08:01 PM on June 11, 2006

Apparently. Finishing two off the lead, ahead of Sorenstam, Creamer, Gulbis, Ochoa, Diaz, Inkster, Neumann, Koch and everyone else save for four players, being in contention for a major championship until the very last stroke, is little more than proof she should be flipping burgers somewhere or golddigging or playing with dolls or something instead of deluding herself that she has any talent whatsoever as a golfer. Please, spare us. Se Ri Pak was full value for the win, as would Karrie Webb have had she won the playoff, but anyone in the top eight had a shot right to the end.

posted by chicobangs at 08:21 PM on June 11, 2006

For all of you who will say that 6th is a great finish, second place is the first loser. I dont think I ever heard such a glass half empty, load of crap before. To come in sixth place out of over 150 players I'd say was very good for any golfer not to mention a 16 yearl old girl. Do you suggest if your not winning at something everytime that you should just quit? If winning anything were that easy, what joy would there be in it?

posted by PGHTOS at 08:36 PM on June 11, 2006

I'm saying that people remember who won. They don't remember who came in second. They sure won't remember who came in 6th. I agree that beating 143 other players is a great accomplishment but in this day and age, winning is what counts. Until she can win on the LPGA Tour, she will never have a chance with the men. We all want to win at whatever we play. Be it cards, golf, bowling, or whatever. If we come in second, we might put on a good face but inside we really wanted to win. No professional plays to come in second.

posted by dbt302 at 09:38 PM on June 11, 2006

Oh, for god's sake - she's 16. I think it's pretty impressive. But, alas, she didn't win, therefore she derserves nothing but derision for the onslaught of media coverage that comes from an underage American girl accomplishing high finishes in international majors at the highest level. I mean, really - who does she think she is? This is all her fault. I'm sorry - my criteria for impressive sporting accomplishments includes winning, but also includes other things. Ergo - if the US Miracle on Ice team lost the finals - do you think they'd still be remembered (keeping in mind that most people don't even realize that the Miracle on Ice game was the semis)? In other news Se Ri Pak seems to have been the forgotten new superstar on the LPGA - she's a threat everytime out and certainly seems to have overcome her demons.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 10:25 PM on June 11, 2006

I'm saying that people remember who won. They don't remember who came in second. They sure won't remember who came in 6th Really? Off the top of your head, can you remember who beat Jean Van de Velde (famous for the triple-bogey collapse on the 18th hole) in the 1999 British Open? Everyone remembers Jean (who finished tied for 2nd), but barely anyone remembers who actually won that tournament. Or who beat Smarty Jones in the Belmont Stakes in 2004? Amazing performances are often remembered, regardless of where the person finished in the tournament/race/competition. The fact that Wie now finished in the top 5 in four of the past five majors before she's turned 17 is an amazing performance.

posted by grum@work at 10:30 PM on June 11, 2006

Who cares she still hasn't proved anything so she is doing OK as a teen. Who knows what will happen in the next couple of years she could never win a thing, and we should remember her why???? Because she hasn't won anything and she has all these major endorsments. I think everyone needs to stop endorsing this girl until she wins something and like they say second place is still losing so once Wie does something to prove herself I won't acknowledge her. Just my thoughts even they aren't worth much these days.

posted by BigDogintheCity at 11:12 PM on June 11, 2006


posted by everett at 11:30 PM on June 11, 2006

Obviously Dog, you care. Otherwise you wouldn't post. I'll tell you what, if a company offered to endorse me, for whatever, I sure as hell wouldn't turn them down. I'd take the money and go about my merry way. Personally, I think it would be in Wie's best interest to stay under the radar, both for her game and her development as a person. But if this is the road she wants to take (provided she's the one calling the shots), I say more power to her.

posted by forrestv at 11:36 PM on June 11, 2006

Yea, I'd do Wei as well, but is that illegal? Anyway dbt302 needs to grow up, "second place is first loser" I bet the 10th loser made more money this weekend playing golf than you do all year. If that's losing, bring it on. The girl plays a great game, give her a couple of years, there are lots of pro's that have never won on the tour.

posted by dviking at 11:36 PM on June 11, 2006

I'm the biggest Wie supporter there is but the fact is, she has trouble with short putts down the stretch. She missed another short one (four feet) on the 16th that would have kept her right in the hunt for the playoff. I think her struggles right now probably have more to do with her age than anything else. Emotionally she isn't hardened enough to withstand the grind of competition all the way to the finish. That will change with time. Everybody gets stronger as they get older in this department and she is no exception. All of that said, I agree with most of you in the fact that here we have a 16-year-old girl who has finished in the top 5 in four of the last five LGPA majors. That is unprecedented in the history of golf. No male or female has ever been this good this young, not even close. She should be applauded for her skill and the future she will bring to the sport. Those who deride her for not winning are missing the point. The wins will come. Anybody who thinks otherwise just isn't paying attention to what is happening. Give her some credit for being as good as she is up to this point. Most girls her age are worried about who they'll sit next to at lunch on Monday. She's making millions. Good for her.

posted by donnnnychris at 01:55 AM on June 12, 2006

i'd do wie in a heartbeat! posted by ggermanctl@sbcglobal at 9:32 PM CDT on June 11 The Internet equivalent of a wolf whistle from your truck as you drive by. What are you hoping for from this comment? That Michelle might drop by later to check SpoFi for some insightful comment and discussion (good luck to her), spot your comment and go weak at the knees? "Well, I was going to go out and practice my putting for an hour or two, but I'd be crazy not to e-mail that guy and see if his offer to "do" me "in a heartbeat" still stands... it's a shame he couldn't last a little longer, but hey, what the hell, I'm a loser, so what more do I deserve?" ggermanctl@sbcglobal - you're an odious little oik and should be put to the knife. dviking - you're almost as bad, but the second half of your comment suggests that you might at least have some vague tendency to think about what you're saying before you vomit it all over the Internet. Wie has done brilliantly again, but she's not the story - and nor is the legality or not of "doing her in a heartbeat". Well done, Se Ri Pak - quite an astounding accomplishment.

posted by JJ at 04:56 AM on June 12, 2006

Yeah, it's a shame she's stopped improving, and she'll never get the chance to get better. Come off it. Hey, without looking: who won the Preakness this year? Yeah, and where did Barbaro finish? (Or better yet, who lost the Super Bowl every year from 1990 to 1993? Now, can you name who won the Super Bowl every year from 1990 to 1993, just as fast?) One other thing: Se Ri Pak (and Karrie Webb, who really did finish second) aren't exactly under-the-radar nobody types. Even before the kids showed up and started messing with things on the tour, they were above-the-title selling points for the LPGA, at least as much as anyone this side of Annika Whatserface.

posted by chicobangs at 05:36 AM on June 12, 2006

i'd do wie in a heartbeat! So, you're declaring that you'd like to have illegal sexual contact with a minor? Because that's what it sounded like. I just want to have the facts straight before I forward your email address to Dateline NBC. Idiot.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 05:52 AM on June 12, 2006

ggermanctl@sbcglobal: Wow, you are 0 for 22! You haven't truly contributed anything intelligent to a single discussion since joining Sportsfilter. I'm hoping you're 15 and your comment is merely immature instead of pathetic. In either case, in the next thread where you want to whip it out please remember you're woefully inadequate in these pissing matches.

posted by ?! at 07:25 AM on June 12, 2006

I'm saying that people remember who won. They don't remember who came in second. They sure won't remember who came in 6th Grum@work and chicobangs, you are kind of making dbt302's point. The only reason anyone remembers Smarty Jones or Barbaro at all is because they won the Kentucky Derby. What distinguishes their finishes beyond the Derby are their subsequent failures/disasters. Van de Velde and the Buffalo Bills, too, are remembered as choke artists much more than for their "achievement" of reaching second place. When the St. Louis Blues ended a long string of playoff-qualifying seasons this year, it was met with little fanfare (even on this site) -- because they had never won the Cup, the streak was even considered emblematic of their mediocrity. The eventual end of the Atlanta Braves' post-season streak will be met with a similar shrug, I'm guessing. As stated above, there is pervasive attitude in sport (perhaps an American attitude, perhaps not) that second place is losing. And on the occassion that we do remember who finished below 1st, it is because of their spectacular failure. Wie is a disappointment to many, because in the movies she comes on the scene and dominates every tournament she's in (then she falls in love and gives up the game for her true heart's desire, and the sequel just sucks -- don't bother). I don't think a lot of people know how to interpret Wie's "failures" (2nd, 6th, whatever) as "successes," since they are kind of gray and unorthodox moral victories. I think grum and chico and WeedyMcSmokey have it exactly right, but I also think it's going to take a straight out Cup-raising, perhaps several, before these kinds of threads go away.

posted by BullpenPro at 07:28 AM on June 12, 2006

Grum@work and chicobangs, you are kind of making dbt302's point. I'm not so sure you get dbt302's point yourself. When dbt302 talks about what "people" remember, he/she/it means "people who get their knowledge of a sport from front-page headlines only and who retain that knowledge for less than a week". dbt302 is correct that those "people" are unlikely to remember much of anything at all. It's the idea that an athlete's worth should be judged by these "people's" opinions that's laughable.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 07:37 AM on June 12, 2006

i'd do wie in a heartbeat! posted by ggermanctl@sbcglobal at 9:32 PM CDT on June 11 Cool. Will you be on the next Dateline NBC "To Catch a Child Diddler" special?

posted by jerseygirl at 08:44 AM on June 12, 2006

TBH, jerseygirl, great reference to the Dateline NBC specials. I couldn't believe it when I read ggermanctl@sbcglobal's comment. Talk about being inappropriate! Unreal.

posted by donnnnychris at 08:46 AM on June 12, 2006

Get used to it, donnnnnnnnny. You can't have a thread about female athletes here without a comment from some donkey about how he'd hit that, within fifteen seconds of the FPP's appearance. If your behavior is inappropriate from the get-go, you're not going to suddenly discover a sense of decorum because the object of your lust is underage.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 09:02 AM on June 12, 2006

Very true LBB, very true.

posted by donnnnychris at 09:07 AM on June 12, 2006

Michelle might not have won this time but it will happen very soon! I wish I had half the skill she has at the age of 16. Rember people, she is only 16! 10 years from now, Wie will have atleast 10 wins in the majors and we will all be immune to her media circus by then. Her accomplishments are a big story but I think she is being exploited by the media, Nike and tv networks. And I think she is demonstrating remarkable maturity for a 16 year old girl. I am very suprised that no mention was made in any of the previous posts about Pat Hurst. The tournament was hers to win and she failed. Had she been a media darling like Wie, the press would have smothered her collapse at the end.

posted by panteeze at 09:37 AM on June 12, 2006

The mental challenge of golf is not understood by all, and those who would use the word "choke" to describe any athletes performance are those who, more often than not, have never themselves been in a position to make a late mistake in any meaningful athletic endeavor. I feel Michelle Wie has proven she belongs on the LPGA tour, and has earned the right to play wherever she is able to qualify, or be invited, without being second guessed or villified by people who, themselves have no game. She has learned one of the biggest lessons a golfer must learn, that being the ability to lose graciously without offering excuses, and has demonstrated that, despite not having her "A" game on a given Sunday, she can still hang in there. I also feel confident that she will one day make a lot of people taste "crow surprise".

posted by mjkredliner at 10:06 AM on June 12, 2006

Oh yeah, what chico said. Se Ri Pak is a deserving winner, her shot on the last hole was CLUTCH, and I am glad she has returned to the Tour, her presence only makes it stronger. She is always a force in the majors. Congrats, Ms. Pak.

posted by mjkredliner at 10:22 AM on June 12, 2006

I'm not so sure you get dbt302's point yourself. I think dbt302, grum@work, chicobangs and I were all talking about the same "people." Whether the opinions of these "people" are collectively valid was not the point (by my observation) -- I supposed that we were talking about The Sports Fan from casual to SpoFi crazed, with the balance obviously leaning toward the former. And I wasn't trying to suggest how anybody should judge an athlete's worth -- that seems as futile as telling somebody they're an idiot for rooting for a particular team. I was just sharing my observation on where the judgment seems to come down. those who would use the word "choke" to describe any athletes performance are those who, more often than not, have never themselves been in a position to make a late mistake in any meaningful athletic endeavor. Are you suggesting that the notion of choking does not exist in competitive sports? On edit: her shot on the last hole was CLUTCH I hope you're not suggesting there is "clutch" but not "choke."

posted by BullpenPro at 10:40 AM on June 12, 2006

I think dbt302, grum@work, chicobangs and I were all talking about the same "people." Whether the opinions of these "people" are collectively valid was not the point (by my observation) -- I supposed that we were talking about The Sports Fan from casual to SpoFi crazed, with the balance obviously leaning toward the former. But these "people", as you've defined them, don't have collective opinions, so there's no way they could be collectively valid. dbt made an assertion about what "people" do and don't remember in sports; for such an assertion to be valid, you need a pretty narrow definition of "people". If you want to agree with dbt's assertion, your definition is too wide; my definition is spot-on.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 11:30 AM on June 12, 2006

Okay. Let's get back to your original contention. You said, "I'm not so sure you [BullpenPro] get dbt302's point yourself." 1. Dbt302 said that people don't remember athletes that don't come in first. Dbt302 presumably used SOME definition of people. 2. Grum and chicobangs guessed that dbt302 knew of some athletes that didn't win (Smarty Jones, Van de Velde, Barbaro, the Buffalo Bills) better than the athletes that beat them. I think it is safe to say that they were making a similar presumption of the knowledge of people, unless they both happen to know dbt302 personally to some degree. 3. I took up the same presumption as grum@work and chicobangs, but I suggested that they were aiding dbt302's point because those same athletes were remembered by "people" for their failure, not for their success at achieving #2 status. I think regarding dbt302's point, I was spot-on. Now, you can say dbt302 and I were both working from a flawed premise (in our cases stated, where it was only implied by the comments of grum and chicobangs)of the collective knowledge of people, but I don't think you can say I didn't get the point. If you're going to tell me I'm wrong, at least get it right what I'm wrong about. (Grins.) As for the accuracy of the premise -- clearly everyone involved has an opinion on what you can presume people remember and what they don't. And we all seem to be in the same ballpark. If someone tells me they are a sports fan, I feel comfortable talking about Bonds, T.O., Jordan, and Nicklaus without having to give them any back story. With athletes like Limehouse (who finished fourth to Smarty Jones) or Moe Drabowsky(a major league pitcher, went to college here in Connecticut, sadly passed away this weekend), I will feel obliged to give more explanation. So I think we, as sports fans, do depend on a certain collective memory -- of course, we make individual adjustments along the way. Is it media and headline driven? Of course.

posted by BullpenPro at 12:23 PM on June 12, 2006

BullpenPro, you make my hair hurt. I'm sure your logic is impeccable, just as I'm sure that assertions about what "people" do, say, think, remember, ride, wear or vote are dumb. No, we as sports fans don't "depend on a certain collective memory" -- does your average German partake in the collective memory of NFL football? There's no "of course" when it comes to what people do or don't remember in sports, unless you want to define that term very narrowly -- which was my point.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 01:36 PM on June 12, 2006

BullpenPro Are you suggesting that the notion of choking does not exist in competitive sports? No, I am suggesting that people are to ready to affix the "choker" tag to an athlete that fails to execute at an inopportune time, regardless of whatever heroics may have led to that athlete even being in the position to win that particular match or game, and, I am suggesting that the people who do have never been in that position. For example, Greg Norman, is remembered more for the 78 he shot while paired with Nick Faldo in the 1996 Masters, than the 63 he shot while paired with Faldo in the 1993 British Open. While it is true that Norman oft times played less than stellar golf in the last round of major championships, the very fact that he had a chance to win as many times as he did is more a testament to his abilities as a golfer, than his failures to win are a testament to him being a "choker". A 75 on a US Open course in final round conditions is many times the average score for the field, and not many mistakes are required to turn a 70 into a 75, sometimes as few as one or two. Or Bill Buckner's case. A great, often brilliant career, remembered only for one unfortunate moment. Golf is much like baseball, in that, there is success in failure. A .300 hitter fails 70% of the time, yet, he is considered a good, if not great, hitter. A golfer may finish in the top 10 of every tournament, yet never win. Although they have beaten 95% of the field every week, and not won, is that failure? And, I suppose, it rankles me most, that people who use the word choke are those who know the least about it. You will never hear another golfer on the tour suggest that another golfer choked. "Clutch" to me is not nearly as difficult to define (Pak's shot on the playoff hole can hardly be labeled anything else). Although there is a certain element of luck or chance in every outstanding shot or play in sports, the ability to make it happen when a BIG game or match is on the line, is usually called clutch, rightly or wrongly.

posted by mjkredliner at 04:16 PM on June 12, 2006

P.S. Not that anyone has referred to Wie as a choker in this thread, but she was in a previous one, and I thought I would try to dispel the notion before it ocurred, chuckle chuckle.

posted by mjkredliner at 04:44 PM on June 12, 2006

So the AP got it wrong. S'what? She's going to prove herself to be the greatest thing since sliced bread soon enough, because look at what she's done when she's only sixteen, and she's going to be just as good as the guys on the PGA tour, and there will be a headline saying she won every other week, and everyone who doubted she is the queen of the universe will have to eat their words. Bwahahahah! Psych.

posted by L.N. Smithee at 10:29 AM on June 13, 2006

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