Years ago, when I was a kid, I thought a bit different. Sure, I played baseball and soccer and basketball and golf, but while the other 8-year-olds were talking about being astronauts or playing first base for the Braves, I had a different dream. I wanted to talk sports on television. Still in the house I grew up in are tapes of old Keith Jackson broadcasts of National Championship games that I recorded so I could listen to the way he spoke and the way he described a game in a way that made it romantic. The best broadcasters in the world go away in a sense. They disappear, allowing you to see and hear everything in unison and take in whatever sport you’re using as a getaway from real life. I’m telling you all this because this will be my last day with Yahoo Sports. My next stop is that chance, an opportunity to talk about this great game in your living rooms. The Back9Network is allowing me that opportunity, putting me in front of millions of homes to talk about the game I love (and it’s on DIRECTV, so if you don’t have it, change that now), and I couldn't be more excited to have such an opportunity and get to do something I always wanted to do. None of this would have ever happened without the people at Yahoo. This platform has allowed me to speak my mind, post stories, videos, and Tiger, Tiger, Tiger to all of you, the readers, throughout the year. I wanted to thank all of you, even the ones that send me the pointed e-mails or use the comment section as a new-age Hate Book, because this wouldn’t have been possible without any of you.
Watch Rory McIlroy, Camilo Villegas and others try to recreate Arnold Palmer's famous tee shot at Cherry Hills
Golf technology is ever-changing. Ever year we see the newest and greatest driver promising to gain us 15-20 yards on every tee, and we have to believe in this club if we want to be the best.
But not long ago, golf clubs were simple things with simple shafts and tough grips. They were golf clubs made for good players, not everyday players, and the better you were, the more you could make them perform. Hitting a driver from the 1960s can not only lose you yardage, but make your hands, teeth and head hurt.
Of course, there were players back in the day that could make this beauties sing. Ben Hogan, Byron Nelson, Arnold Palmer and Jack Nicklaus are just some of the legends that would take whatever equipment they were handed and make it do exactly what they wanted, with Arnie giving us a great example of this as he started his final round in the 1960 U.S. Open.
Palmer drove the opening par-4 at Cherry Hills, some 346-yards away, making a birdie to start one of the best final rounds in major championship history.
Rory McIlroy, Camilo Villegas, Zach Johnson and others attempted, and failed, to drive that opening green, and the PGA Tour got it on film.
We've seen plenty of cool photos of Tiger Woods over the years. There was the great run-and-point SI cover from the PGA Championship in 2000. There was this one from the PGA Championship a season ago. Even the photobomb by Ryan Palmer earlier this year in front of Tiger was amazing.
But nothing will top what German artist Andy Gellenberg has done with a bunch of Nike swooshes. Gellenberg did a portrait of Tiger with just the swooshes, and it is absolutely perfect.
Check out the picture below, and click the link to see what Gellenberg did with both LeBron James and skateboarder Paul Rodriguez.
Golf can be a frustrating game. Between all the moves we make with our golf swings, to the battles we have between the ears, it can be a nearly impossible game to master.
Tommy Morrissey is trying to do just that, and at just 3-years-old, has a golf swing that any adult would envy. The only difference? Tommy was born with just one arm, yet still can smack the golf ball over 100 yards.
Fox 29 out of Philadelphia caught up with Tommy and his family last week in Lindwood, New Jersey, and got to hear about how people react when they see Morrissey hit the golf ball with just one arm.
"They look at him and see how small he is and they say, ‘Awesome, the little guy can hit a golf ball," Tommy's father, Joe, said to Fox 29. "And then they look and they see that he's doing it with one hand and they say, 'That's incredible.' And then after they watch him, after they learn, he's just a little boy, just killing it, they walk away and say, 'he's an inspiration.'"
- - - - - - -
Shane Bacon at Ball Don't Lie 1 yr ago
As the summer wears on, with training camps and preseason play still off in (what feels like) the distant future, we turn our attention to the past. Join us as we while away a few late-summer moments recalling some of the most scintillating slams of yesteryear, the most thunderous throwdowns ever to sear themselves into our memories. This is Dunk History.
Today, Shane Bacon takes a look at what Isaiah Rider did at the 1994 Slam Dunk Competition, with a dunk we all now know, simply, as the "East Bay Funk Dunk."
There was something a bit off when the 1994 NBA season rolled into the All-Star break. This was the first All-Star weekend A.M. (After Michael), as Mr. Jordan had taken his talents to the baseball diamond, and we were all left a little confused at just who was going to take the reigns from the most competitive man in the world and bring the goods.
I was in fourth grade at the time, and could sit in front of a television for hours as long as the channel had some sport on it. That was my life as a kid; NFL season turned to the NBA, which turned to baseball, which switched right back over to the NFL like a digital clock does each evening at 11:59.
After the third round of the Deutsche Bank Championship, it looked like Rory McIlroy might snag a fourth PGA Tour title in five starts thanks to a Sunday 64 that got him within two shots of the lead.
But Monday's final round didn't turn out the way the No. 1 in the world had hoped. Rory struggled for most of the day with his putter, settling for a closing 70 that left McIlroy in a T-5.
That disappointing closing round didn't stop Rory from having some fun on the flight out of Boston, as he was videotaped freaking his caddie, JP Fitzgerald, out while Fitzgerald was taking a nap.
The video was fun, and despite not leaving with another trophy, it looks like Rory is still in pretty great spirits as the Tour heads to Colorado.
Paul McGinley finalizes the European Ryder Cup team with Stephen Gallacher, Lee Westwood and Ian Poulter
Paul McGinley took the stage at Wentworth on Tuesday to announce his three wild-card picks for the 2014 Ryder Cup, and the picks just added to the stacked lineup that will go up against the Americans later this month.
McGinley went with Stephen Gallacher, Ian Poulter and Lee Westwood with his three available picks, surprising some by leaving Luke Donald off the team, but bringing in three men that have either had success at this event in the past, or have played great golf this season.
Gallacher, a rookie for McGinley, might be a surprise name to some, but he has played fantastic golf this season. In his last six starts on the European Tour, Gallacher has finished in the top-15 four times including a clutch T-3 last week in Italy that included a final round 65, much-needed in terms of Ryder Cup consideration (a T-2 would have automatically qualified him for the team, so it was literally down to one shot for the 39-year-old).
Poulter and Westwood have been stalwarts at this event over the years, with Poulter rocking a 12-3-0 record while Westwood is 18-13-6 in eight appearances.
How do you shoot a 65 during a professional golf round with a quadruple-bogey on your card? Just ask American John Hahn, who did just that on Sunday at the Open D'Italia.
Hahn struggled on Friday and Saturday after opening with a 67 in Torino, but went out on Sunday and posted a 7-under 65, but it was nothing like what you'd expect from one of the low rounds of the day.
Hahn eagled his opening hole, made birdies on the next three, and after another eagle on the par-4 7th and a birdie on the 9th, it was out in 28 for Hahn. When he made another birdie on the 11th, Hahn sat at 9-under for the day and had people murmuring about a possible 59, but that was when the round went haywire.
Hahn made a quadruple-bogey on the par-3 13th to derail any chance of a sub-60 round, but followed up his blowup hole with a birdie on the 14th and a third eagle on No. 15.
The final score was a 65, but it had plenty of crazy things happening for Hahn, who finished T-35, jumping 37 spots on Sunday with that wicked round of golf.
For Rory McIlroy, the start of the FedEx Cup playoffs was the first real letdown of this incredible summer run from the No. 1 player in the world. Atop the FedEx Cup rankings before the Barclays, McIlroy never really got it going on the weekend after a Friday 65, finishing T-22, stopping his run of three straight wins and forcing the 25-year-old to recharge his batteries.
Just a week later, it looks like Rory did just that, coming out on fire during the opening round of the Deutsche Bank Championship. Starting on the 10th hole, Rory stuck his opening approach shot to just a couple of feet to get his round going with a birdie, but it didn't stop there.
McIlroy rolled in a bomb on the par-3 11th for two in a row, and after a par on the 12th, hit another approach shot to just a couple of feet for his third birdie in four holes.
Rory's round is still going, but I couldn't imagine a better start for the man searching for his first FedEx Cup title and a second win at this championship.
The Deutsche Bank Championship is always a fun week on the PGA Tour. The Friday start is a bit different, as is the Monday finish, and the tournament has been an important part of the FedEx Cup since it all began in 2007.
As we get set for the second leg of the 2014 playoffs, we look back at some of the best shots ever hit at the Deutsche Bank Championship since the playoffs began in '07.
We have a little Phil, some Tiger, and a clutch, clutch performance by Webb Simpson back in 2011 when he closed with three birdies to win his second of four PGA Tour titles.