Ask Alan: Is Jordan Spieth entertaining or infuriating? | Golf News and Tour Information

Is Jordan Spieth the most entertaining golfer of all time or the most infuriating? @Kevinp613

Yes. And that’s what makes it so captivating. He is both a golf genius and a tortured soul. He can make difficult things seem easy and easy things seem impossible. Spieth has both superpowers and intense frailties. Watching him brawl to realize his vast potential is the best show in the game. What a contender.

From this day forward, who has the better career: Jordan or Justin Thomas? @AndrewJFleming

Oooh, difficult. Thomas has more firepower and never loses the plot like Spieth does. But JT doesn’t have the guts of Jordan – in all honesty, no one does – and he doesn’t play with the same kind of joy. Perhaps because it’s been nearly five years since he won his only major championship, Thomas seems increasingly frustrated/downtrodden on the golf course. He seems more obsessed with results than process. Meanwhile, Spieth manifests joy in struggles. For this reason, I think Jordan will have a longer and more successful career.

Did Ted Scott complete caddy of the year honors? @CCGabriel1

Don’t sleep on Michael Greller! Caddieing for Spieth must be like riding a wild horse. If Jordan completes the Career Grand Slam next month at Southern Hills, Greller could work his way to legendary COY honors.

Yes Spieth never wins another event, is he still a Hall of Famer? Three major tournaments and a FedEx Cup winner and other victories…I say yes. @skroutyboy

No question. I mean, did you see any other people in the room? If they put Billy Payne in there but deny Jordan, we’ll burn this place down and I’ll bring the gasoline and the matches.

Do you think Scottie won more or less than three major tournaments? @modernml

Here is an incomplete list of players who have won less than three major tournaments: Greg Norman, Johnny Miller, Dustin Johnson, Bernhard Langer, Curtis Strange, Ben Crenshaw, Jose Maria Olazabal, Tony Jacklin, Zach Johnson, Fred Couples, Davis Love III, Tom Weiskopf, Tom Kite, Sergio Garcia, Jason Day and Justin Thomas. Obviously, winning three is a monumental achievement. I certainly think Scheffler has the game and the head to do it, but life can get in the way. Ask all the guys in this paragraph.

Is this the biggest crop of contenders for the title of greatest player to ever win a major tournament? Hovland. Canlay. Cam Smith. Alex. Sungjae. That was Scottie before this week, unless you count career longevity. Now who is it? @evandawson

You are missing an important part of being BPNTHWAM, which is suffering. You have to lose a major or two even to be considered, and there has to be a sense of struggle. You can argue that Tony Finau is a better choice than any of the players you listed. Xander Schauffele has been there many times, but wins for him are so sporadic that the dreaded title is not his, at least not yet. (And Olympic gold is a near-major.) Cam Smith certainly deserves special attention. If he spends another year knocking on the door but doesn’t, I’ll be ready to anoint him.

Anthony Kim would be an instant draw for one of the new tours. Realistically, what do you imagine they would have to offer him to come and play? @HighFades

AK’s cult is remarkably durable. I hear a big-budget documentary about him is in the works, and not too long ago I was interviewed for a multi-part podcast covering his baffling career. I agree that if he signed with the Saudis or PGL, it would stimulate a huge amount of interest, at least in the short term. But AK is now middle-aged at nearly 37 and has been out of the game for a decade, having been dogged by injuries and the yelping of the driver. What if he comes back and can’t break 80? The whole plot would evaporate, and I think AK knows that and that’s part of what kept him in self-imposed exile. For him to stand out, he would need a check with lots of commas and zeros.

The biggest conundrum: Rickie Fowler’s fall to the player who won The Players (2015) and finished in the top five of every major tournament in 2014, or the struggles of Matthew Wolff, the go-to bomber who was once the best collegiate hope, even above the like Hovland and Morikawa? #AskAlan @opinionsvary328

You could call them puzzles, or maybe the two players are proof that succeeding in professional golf is about so much more than the golf swing. Butch Harmon basically fired Fowler because he felt Rickie didn’t have a burning desire to be a great player. But he’s always had a good life, and now married with a kid, maybe that’s enough for Fowler. Wolff has been admirably open about his mental health issues, and it appears to be an ongoing battle. Going forward, he may define victory very differently than most players. From the outside, looking inside might be vexing that neither player won the clip we expected, but I think both are looking for peace more than trophies.

It sounds trivial, but has Bryson permanently destroyed his career in his seemingly maniacal pursuit of hitting a golf ball farther than any other human being? Can he get his body back to normal and avoid injury and actually work on other parts of his game? @rchinnis

It’s not trivial, it’s a huge story. This guy destroyed Winged Foot by creating a model for how the game could be played. Now that pursuit has apparently broken him. This is Shakespeare stuff, not the sports page. I don’t think DeChambeau knows how to recall anything, and that would be a kind of concession he hates to make. I think he’ll go 100 mph and drop the chips where they can.

Coming off the 11th green on Masters Sunday in 2019, about to hang up a green jacket, Francesco was the best player in the world, having dominated a Ryder Cup and tamed Carnoustie with Tiger Woods breathing down his neck. Then he was swept away by a tsunami of Tigermania. Three years later, Molinari is still lost at sea. He moved his family to Los Angeles during Covid, and it’s a huge lifestyle change. There were nagging wounds. But it’s amazing how far he’s fallen. Frankie turns 40 in November; he still has time to be the player he was. Here is the hope.

With his headline dominance, Tiger may be stifling the stardom of current and future golf talent. Do you agree? #AskAlan @GoranBarnes

I don’t know, maybe it gives them more room to grow. With Tiger around, the best young players in the game are certainly less in the spotlight. The mind-boggling thing is that around 2015-2016, it seemed like the Tiger-Phil era was finally over. Woods was plagued with chip yelps and debilitating back problems, and an aging Mickelson hadn’t won in ages. Yet, all these years later, they still dominate the sport. I thought we should all wean ourselves off of their personality cults, but apparently they’re still going to grab the headlines when Spieth et al hit the Senior Tour.

Despite three putts galore and shoddy chips, Tiger still has speed and accuracy. That said, he was visibly in pain as the Masters progressed, and it took a Herculean effort just to complete 72 holes. How much lower is his score if he used a cart? #AskAlan @opinionsvary328

It’s like asking what I’m going to serve at the Dinner of Champions after winning the Masters – it doesn’t happen, and Tiger doesn’t ride in a cart either.

Michael C. Ford