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Golf: How Did Daly Do It?

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Stan Sutherland
Stan Sutherland

“At the WGC-American Express at Harding Park, Daly lost to Tiger Woods when he missed a three-footer on the first hole of sudden-death playoff. Disheartened, Daly drove that night to Las Vegas and lost $1.65 million playing $5,000 slot machines.”

Thanks to Jaime Diaz, yours truly now knows the answer to how John Daly managed to go through so much money in such a short time; $5,000 slot machines

Hit it hard
Jaime writes, “It’s not surprising that ESPN’s recent “30 for 30” documentary on John Daly, entitled “Hit it Hard,” has connected. Daly checks off almost all the boxes—including uber-talented, entertaining, insouciant, rebellious, hard-living, charismatic and triumphant (enough)—that describe a sport’s folk hero.”

And lest we forget, Jaime reminds us, “Daly’s victory at the 1991 PGA at Crooked Stick remains, short of Tiger Woods’ greatest performances, the best example of a player dominating a tournament that I have ever seen. That week Daly’s drives were so much longer than anyone else in the field that it inspired then-competitor David Feherty to crack that to calculate their distance he had to factor in the curvature of the earth.”

How a swing is born
Over at golf.com Josh Sens’ headline reads, “9 Amazing Facts from ESPN's New John Daly '30 for 30' Doc,” and here’s what I’ve picked as the most interesting.

1. The Origins of His Distinctive Swing
Daly got his first golf clubs when he was 4, an adult set that he never had cut down. The clubs were so long and heavy for him that when he took them back, they kept going and going. An ankle-scratching swing was born.

7. What He Put in the Claret Jug
En route to winning the ’95 British Open at St. Andrews, a then-sober Daly slugged back oceans of Diet Coke. But he didn’t chug the soda from the Claret Jug. He filled the vessel with chocolate ice cream instead.

8. A Lot of Dollars, Not a Ton of Sense 

During an especially self-destructive gambling streak, Daly won $40 to $45 million at the tables. Unfortunately, he says, he lost $95 to $98 million over that same span

Links to Jaime Diaz and Josh Sens

Quote of the Day
“After his breakthrough win at the ’91 PGA Championship at Crooked Stick, Daly celebrated with dinner at a McDonald’s drive-thru.“I couldn’t cash the check yet,” Daly says, “so I really didn’t have any money.” – Josh Sens

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