PGA of America says tougher rules could hurt game

Updated 13 December 2012
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PGA of America says tougher rules could hurt game

NEW YORK: Limiting how far the ball travels and the type of putters players can use could do more harm than good for golf, the PGA of America said on Tuesday.
The PGA of America, who is opposed to a proposed ban on players anchoring long putters to their body, feels making golf easier would grow the game and is ready to resist a possible move to reign in the distance golf balls travel.
“If you do anything that’s going to cause the rank and file amateur player to not hit the ball as far, there’s no way you’re going to enhance their enjoyment of the game,” PGA President Ted Bishop told reporters on Tuesday.
Golf’s rulesmakers have not formally proposed dialing back how far a golf ball can go, but it has been something the United States Golf Association (USGA) has long pondered.
Bishop, whose eye is trained on increasing the popularity of the game, said he worried about the average player if such a rule were to be passed.
According to Bishop, the USGA has said controlling the distance of golf balls is something that may be worth exploring to help improve golf course maintenance costs and potentially lessen the amount of land required to build golf courses.
“I’m not so sure that’s the greater issue we have to deal with,” Bishop told Reuters. “This game is a hard game and anything we do to make the golf course play longer, play more difficult, is certainly going to deter from the enjoyment of the game for the average player.”
A review process on the proposed anchoring rule by the USGA and the Royal and Ancient is set to continue through next February and if approved would be enforced from Jan. 1, 2016.
The PGA reacted quickly, issuing a statement calling on the rules bodies “to seriously consider the impact this proposed ban may have on people’s enjoyment of the game and the overall growth of the game.”
A survey of PGA members showed 63 percent were against a ban of anchoring, a putting style used by three of the past five major champions — Keegan Bradley, Webb Simpson and Ernie Els.
“I’ve already had players in my club that are using long putters ... saying ‘are you going to make it a local rule that’s going to allow me to putt this way?’” said Bishop, for 20 years the general manager and director of golf at The Legends Golf Club, in Franklin, Indiana.
“It puts us in a tough position as club professionals trying to administer events at our club level.”
Some have suggested two sets of rules, one governing professionals and another applied to more ordinary players, referred to as bifurcation.
Pete Bevacqua, the new chief executive the PGA of America, did not think split rules were a good way to go.
“Everyone wants to see where the rules go,” Bevacqua told Reuters. “(But) I tend to agree with the USGA, I don’t think bifurcation is the answer. It would be crazy if we all played by different sets of rules.
“I think it’s great that you see what the elite players are doing and get to judge their performance or the performance of their friends against them. That’s part of the charm of golf.”


LeBron James' last-second shot gives Cavs 98-95 win over Pacers in Game 5

James pushes the Cavaliers within one victory of advancing in the Eastern Conference playoffs. (Getty Images/AFP)
Updated 26 April 2018
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LeBron James' last-second shot gives Cavs 98-95 win over Pacers in Game 5

  • James' 3-pointer buzzer beater puts Cavaliers within one victory of advancing in the Eastern Conference playoffs
  • James finished with 44 points, 10 rebounds, eight assists.

CLEVELAND: LeBron James hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer, a crowning moment for another brilliant performance, to give Cleveland a 98-95 victory over the Indiana Pacers on Wednesday night in Game 5, putting the Cavaliers within one victory of advancing in the Eastern Conference playoffs.
Moments after blocking Victor Oladipo’s possible go-ahead driving layup, James caught the inbounds pass, took two dribbles and dropped the winner over Thaddeus Young.
As Cleveland’s sellout crowd exploded, James hugged rookie teammate Cedi Osman before jumping on the scorer’s table to celebrate another of those moments that will define his career.
James finished with 44 points, 10 rebounds, eight assists and went 15 of 15 from the line.
Kyle Korver added 19 points and Cleveland’s much-maligned defense tightened just in time as the Cavaliers seized their first lead in the first-round series after being down 1-0 and 2-1.
Cleveland can close out Indiana with a win Friday night in Indianapolis.
Domantas Sabonis scored 22 points, and Young had 16 for the Pacers, who battled back to tie it 95-all on Sabonis’ 15-foot jumper with 33 seconds left. Indiana, which held Cleveland without a field goal for more than seven minutes during their fourth-quarter rally forced James into a turnover and had a chance to re-take the lead.
Oladipo, who shot just 2 of 15, drove the left side and was at the rim when James swooped in for a block on a play reminiscent of his Game 7 block on Andre Iguodala in the 2016 NBA Finals.
Oladipo’s shooting woes continued. He’s only 12 of 50 from the field in the last three games. He scored 32 in the Pacers’ Game 1 win, but the Cavs have been double-teaming him ever since.
The third quarter has been a major problem for Cleveland all season. The Cavs had tried everything to try and shake things up after halftime, even doing layup lines at the break in Game 4 like a high school squad.
Turns out, all it took was some defensive intensity.
Down by seven at half, the Cavs swarmed the Pacers in the third quarter, forcing five turnovers in the first six minutes and holding Indiana to one field goal over the first 6:52 while opening with a 19-3 run.
Cleveland outscored Indiana 32-17 in the third, when the Pacers shot just 5 for 16 (31 percent) and committed seven turnovers.
The Cavs were again without starting point guard George Hill, who missed his second straight game with back spasms.
DWYANE’S WORLD
James had enough to worry about with the Pacers that he didn’t want to discuss close friend Dwyane Wade’s future.
Miami’s star is mulling retirement after the Heat were eliminated Tuesday in Philadelphia. James spent four years playing in Miami with Wade, who began this season with the Cavs before being traded.
James said that following his last game against Wade he told him, “’If it’s like our last time going against each other, then it’s been everything and more.” James wants to wait for Wade to make his decision and will then “give a more in-depth analysis of his career if he decides to hang ‘em up.”
TIP-INS:
Pacers: Following Lance Stephenson’s aggressive, wrestling-like takedown of Jeff Green in the waning moments of Game 4, coach Nate McMillan said he reminded the fiery forward to be careful. “The officials are going to be watching that, Lance knows that and there are some times where I think they (the Cavs) are taking advantage.” ... Dropped to 2-12 in their last 14 games in Cleveland. ... James’ triple-double in Game 4 was the sixth against Indiana in the playoffs. James has done it to the Pacers three times.
Cavaliers: With his 21st 40-point game in the playoff, James tied the logo — Jerry West — for the second-most all-time. Michael Jordan scored at least 40 in 38 postseason games. .... Hill’s back has improved in the past few days, but he didn’t look close to playing while sitting stiffly in his locker-room chair before the game. ... Browns Hall of Fame running back Jim Brown sat courtside.
UP NEXT
Game 6 is Friday night at Indianapolis.