By Flint Wheeler
Davis Love III has the unenviable task of captaining the 2016 U.S. Ryder Cup team, which is basically the equivalent of being a substitute teacher in a third-grade class filled with superstars, whiners, prima donnas and Bill Haas. It’s a no-win. But it’s even more of a no-win when you set up the press like Love did the other day after being asked about his captain’s picks (the top 10 in Ryder Cup points automatically play at Hazeltine; Love chooses the remaining two players).
DL3 was asked about – who else – Tiger Woods and whether he’d ever be considered for a captain’s pick. Instead of gently swatting away the answer, like I’m sure in hindsight he wishes he had, Love pondered and gave reporters a reason to follow up on the question, for months. Emphatically stating on Sportscenter, “[Tiger] doesn’t have to be number nine in points to get picked He’s itching to play as much as anybody. If he’s playing well, it would be hard not to go with him.”
If I knew it wasn’t, I’d say this was a plot twist on a Kardashian reality show because no one — no one — would possibly say this unless they were courting drama. I mean, Love saw what happened to Tom Watson, right? A no doubt hall of famer and legend and the Ryder Cup ate him up, chewed him and spit him back out. For a time it looked like the debacle of 2014 would come to define Watson, but luckily his career managed to outweigh his (reported) bullheadedness and lack of communication.
And now Love is starting in win this Tiger stuff? Does he want to be St. Sebastian? Davis, here’s how to answer the question, “would you consider adding Tiger Woods as a captain’s pick?”
Do not give this story any life before it actually need be a story, okay? If Tiger comes back at the Memorial or U.S. Open or wherever and looks like the Tiger of old then, sure, you’re going to have to deal with this question. But as long as Tiger’s public golf game consists of YouTube clips of him (poorly) hitting balls on a range, then answering a question about whether Tiger will be a Ryder Cupper is like asking me whether I’ll be competing in the U.S. Open.
Not that I blame Love. There really is no good way to respond to that question because a persistent reporter wouldn’t let him slide with a non-answer answer. This is why the Ryder Cup captain’s job is the worst one in sports. If you win, it’s because of the players. If you lose, the national disgrace is on you. And maybe Tiger Woods, if he plays because, you know, he’s not good at golf right now.
Side Note –
It’s rare we talk soccer, errr, I mean, “futbol”. However, prior to the season, Leicester City was a 5,000-to-1 longshot to win the Premier League, according to English bookmaker William Hill.
To put that in perspective, the longest preseason odds for any team to win the 2016 World Series were 500-to-1 for the Philadelphia Phillies and Atlanta Braves (according to the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook). And the longest shot to win next year’s Super Bowl is the Cleveland Browns at a mere 200-to-1.
Looking at past unlikely winners, the 1999 St. Louis Rams and 1991 Minnesota Twins were two of the most surprising champions in recent memory, as both finished last in their divisions the previous years. But they were both only 300-to-1 before the season.
Other notable (and listed) 5000-1 odds:
- Christmas is the warmest day of the year in England.
- Bigfoot or Loch Ness Monster is proven to exist.
- Elvis is found alive.
- Kim Kardashian becomes the U.S. president in 2020
- Barack Obama plays cricket for England after his term is over.
English sportsbooks have liability in the Millions of pounds on Leicester’s victory. Rare as it is – I’m heading to Vegas to find some long odds. Elvis has to be somewhere.