Saturday, July 07, 2012

Compare Tiger Woods and Sam Snead

Tiger Woods recent win in the ATT  National moved him past Jack Naicklaus and just behind Sam Snead in career tournament wins. Woods gushed about his triumph to reporters who he claimed effectively left him for road kill after the U.S. Open.. Tiger is no shrinking violet. Woods pointed out that Snead had 82 wins. And now he has 74. Nicklaus had 73.

Numbers tell a lot but don't tell all. Numbers have to be put in context to evaluate the truth of comparative quality of tournament wins. Fifty or so years ago Snead played in an era that featured at least half as many tournaments per year. Ergo Woods has had many more chances to catch Snead. Snead supplemented his income by being a teaching pro and some endorsements. Woods isn't a teaching pro and his endorsements make him more money than the tournament purse winnings. The pressure was always on Snead while Woods shared his pressure with his agent and publicist. Snead was white and humble. Woods is black and lets no one forget it.

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