Imagine for a moment this scenario. March 8, 1971, Joe Frazier is scheduled to fight the worlds greatest boxer, Muhamad Ali. The fight is dubbed ‘The Fight of The Century” – where two undefeated fighters would contend for the heavyweight title.
Can you imagine if, before the fight, Joe Frazier posts a video on social media complaining about difficult it will be to beat Ali?
“Have you seen this guy? He’s tough. He’s the greatest. He’s fast. Look at how he moves? How can I expect to beat him? I wish all of the past fighters would get together and decide on what’s fair so it wouldn’t be so difficult to beat this guy.
Well, this is what I feel just happened with Kevin Na. He posted a video complaining about the rough at Erin Hills, site of the 2017 U.S. Open.
I don’t get it. Are we supposed to agree with him? Would I like the course to be easier so Kevin and other players can go out and shoot 20 under? Not exactly. My thought is “Thank God the the rough is finally penalizing a bad shot.”
Now that he posted this video, I can’t wait to watch the tournament.
When Moe was alive, we discussed this. I asked him what he would change about the game. He said he would narrow the fairways and grow the rough. That way ball-striking would have more significance.
Today, distance has become THE major factor in the game. What Kevin didn’t say but what he suggested was that he might not be able to hit driver off of every tee. That maybe some of the long holes might play longer and harder because of the threat of hitting it into the rough.
Moe would have laughed. He would have hit driver off every tight hole. I can still hear him talking about the narrow fairways, “It’s wide enough if you can fit a ball into it.”
By the way, we all know that is not what happened in the Fight of the Century. Joe Frasier punished Ali knocking him to the canvas in the final round winning the match.
Kevin should see the heavy rough as an advantage.
So, no, I don’t sympathize with him or any of the players complaining about the thick rough and arduous conditions. The course will play tough, and I hope that the USGA stands their ground.
This is the U.S. Open. It’s a major championship. It is meant to be tough. Suck it up and fight. Play hard and may the best player (who keeps the ball in the fairways) win.