There are many ways a golfer can define himself later in his career, and not all of them are good.
After a closing-round 69 on Sunday at the WGC-Bridgestone, a round that left him one stroke short of winner Keegan Bradley, Furyk now has the uncomfortable distinction of having blown two tournaments this year. Surely the Bridgestone hurts a touch less than losing the U.S. Open on the final three holes, but still ... a loss is a painful loss.
If there's any saving grace in this (not that Furyk or any other pro would take satisfaction in another's misfortune), Furyk's stumbles pale in comparison to the Adam Scott implosion a couple weeks back at the British Open.
Still, you've got to wonder how these late-Sunday flubs will impact him going forward. Furyk is one of his generation's best golfers, but when you've got the lead for 71 holes and you give it up on a double-bogey on the final hole, well ... Furyk will be at less-than-optimum mindset heading into the season's final major this week.
Still, credit Furyk for being a stand-up guy in defeat; he gave a substantial, thoughtful interview to CBS's David Feherty just after signing his scorecard.
"I have no one to blame but myself when things go wrong," Furyk said. "It's an empty pit...i look over and see my boys crying after the round, and it reminds you as an adult that you have to act a certain way."
Furyk is one of golf's class acts, but class doesn't sink putts or keep the ball on the fairway. He'll need to put these lapses behind him to win again, and he should, but one wonders what could have been this season for Furyk.
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