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Should you be 'cordial' with your competition on the golf course?  Especially in a tournament?  Curtis Strange doesn't think so...

 

Which side are you on? 

Okay to chit chat between holes or stone-faced-killa ??

 

https://www.golfdigest.com/story/curtis-strange-rips-jon-rahm-and-andrew-landry-for-their-playoff-interactions

 

Jon Rahm and Andrew Landry played superb golf from tee to green during their four-hole playoff at the CareerBuilder Challenge on Sunday. But one Hall of Famer had a problem with how the two young tour pros handled themselves on their walks from said tee to green.

Rather than commenting on Rahm's win or Landry's toughness down the stretch, Curtis Strange chose to focus on how much Rahm and Landry talked in between shots. Apparently, Strange is not a big fan of friendly chit-chat when there's a tournament on the line.

 

 

Watching Andrew Landry and Jon Rahm in playoff. Walking off tee talking to each other. Are you kidding me ? Talking at all. ?

​

Strange was always known as a fierce competitor during his heyday (You have to be to win back-to-back U.S. Opens), and this isn't the first time we've heard older players lament the on-course chumminess of today's generation. Here's how Strange explained his reasoning for not talking during high-pressure situations:

 

Serious question: Is the issue that it appears less than competitive, or that it might negatively affect either of their focus?

 

 

The issue is I don't want to make you a bit relaxed or comfortable. High pressure, good.

 
 

Fair enough. And here's how he compared it to going up against one of his contemporaries, Nick Faldo.

 

You and Faldo used to chat a bunch out there.. didn't ya? 1f602.png

The moral of the story? If you ever find yourself in a playoff against Curtis Strange and he's giving you the silent treatment, don't take it personally.

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I think it all depends on who the players are and how they handle pressure.  I could see Lee Trevino and Boo Weekly having a blast even during a playoff. Not so much if ya had Tiger Woods and Jack Nicklaus.  The latter two would be pure focus with killer instincts while the first pairing would be wondering where the best fishing hole was.  

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If you have the mental ability to focus, then any other distraction is fine - including friendly chit chat.

If on the other hand you're in your own bubble and seldom make even eye contact with your opponent, then you at least need to be courteous - especially when you lose.

Personally, I tend to think that either stance seldom changes the outcome - so it is usually best to choose the option that gives the most satisfaction - for me, that it is a friendly chat. After all, it is just a game folks.

Right, Curtis?

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I'm with Curtis. It almost seems like they were not playing against each other. I do not like loosing and even my good friends know I shut my mouth when it's crunch time.

 

 

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Darn, Curtis, that's not the way a true "Virginia Gentleman" acts.   You should know better.  

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This cracks me up.

 

Would anyone be shocked to learn that the generation before thought Curtis' generation of players was too soft and chummy too?

 

It is what it is.

 

I've played enough competitive sports to know that there are always different personalities in the mix. You have to be yourself under pressure.

 

Having written that there is very little golf that we are involved in that would require and stone face and it's always easy to say nice shot without being chatty.

 

 

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I think Rev nailed it.  You have to be yourself under pressure.

 

If that's the stone faced killer and you block everything out, go for it.  If that's relaxing between shots and talking with your opponent, go for it.

 

Basically, within the rules of the game do whatever it takes to put yourself in the best position to win.

 

What about trash talking?  

 

That happens in other sports (basketball, football, baseball, hockey...); is that below the belt in golf?

 

"You better put it on the green cause I'm about to drop a birdie"

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What about trash talking?  

 

That happens in other sports (basketball, football, baseball, hockey...); is that below the belt in golf?

 

"You better put it on the green cause I'm about to drop a birdie"

Trash talk in golf? I think it depends on the situation, when playing our normal games with friends there are always comments flying around. Club championship not so much. I think it's an etiquette thing.

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What about trash talking?  

 

That happens in other sports (basketball, football, baseball, hockey...); is that below the belt in golf?

 

"You better put it on the green cause I'm about to drop a birdie"

 

 

Trash talk in golf? I think it depends on the situation, when playing our normal games with friends there are always comments flying around. Club championship not so much. I think it's an etiquette thing.

 

Definitely trash talk with your friends but personally I'd vote keep it out of tourneys.  The funny thing about trash talk though is you have to back up or you look like a fool.  Now if two guys are paired together and have that relationship then go ahead and talk a little trash.  But I'd rather let my playing speak for itself, I just wish it spoke a little louder.

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I find it interesting how this seems acceptable during the Ryder cup but when it's mano-y-mano it can be considered bad etiquette.

Maybe that's why I like the Ryder cup so much....will never forget that Patrick Reed/Rory match.

Would love to see Reed use that hush sign during a tournament.

Maybe then golf wouldn't be voted most boring....

 

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I'm with Meyer. Let my game speak, a few birds in a row can either elevate your buddies or demoralize them. I prefer the straight faced cut throat golf. The bro stuff is getting old.

 

Just like this, courtesy of @easygolftips on IG.

 

 

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I also think it's a generational thing but I've got a different take. It's not quite as simple as saying "old people are mean; young people are nice." I'd argue we've got a little bit of nature vs nurture going on.

 

 

Previous generations didn't focus on just one sport; they played many different sports (I'm from the tail end of this generation). It was seen as a badge of honor if you could start for your school's teams all 3 seasons. I think the killer instinct you saw in Strange's era bled into golf from players who learned to hold contempt for your opponent through football, basketball, baseball, etc.

 

This new generation grew up playing one sport and specialized their skills year round. Golf by nature is not a competitive sport against your opponent but rather the course and yourself. Add in programs like the first tee and other learning centers and you're teaching the youth better manners to match golf etiquette without the brutal competitiveness learned elsewhere.

 

 

Just like all trends, there's exceptions but I'd say this describes the general population of both eras. Is it good or bad for the sport? The answer is 'yes.' Being different doesn't always mean better or worse. It's just that the new generation has its own identity where they'd rather win with a birdie than make their opponent miss a putt for par.

 

 

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I think Curtis is a little off base, and agree with the others that you should let your normal personality determine how you act.  However, I bet Curtis would not be one to leave his ball 2 feet past the hole to provide a backstop while another player is chipping.  That's taking friendliness a bit too far.

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I'm very competitive But that doesn't change because I'm in a match with my friends (having fun laughing) or in a gap match and it's all business. Both scenarios I want to beat them into the ground. But depending on the scenario is how I act. This guy is mistaking their friendly ways with a sign of weakness...Because they are friends they always want to win I know I do

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If I'm in a tournament, I don't like to talk. I'm not trying to be a jerk, I just like to stay focused and concentrate. Hard to do when I play with guys I know, but I play my best that way. It was the same in college. If I got to talking trash on the court, I was done!

 

 

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With me, it all depends on who I am playing.  If I end up in a tournament playoff with a good friend of mine, there will definitely be some talk and good natured ribbing going on while we are playing.  However, if it's somebody I don't know or don't know that well, chances are I won't say a word to them.  Probably won't even look their direction.  I'll be focused on what I need to do to win and that's it. 

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Time to move forward why do think a lot of the young people don't play golf because us old grey hairs take the fun out of the sport. I like the talent they guys have I wish I had 10 % of their talent. Move on with the snob days.

 

 

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There are many valid arguments presented in this thread. What I believe everyone has missed is there level of play that was shown. Do I watch golf to see who talks to who? Whether they laugh or stare each other down? Civility does not equate to anything more than civility. Competition should bring out the best golf. Whatever that looks like.

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