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GOLF Channel Notable Quotes

Golf Central Live From the U.S. Open (Monday, Primetime)

Pebble Beach Golf Links, Pebble Beach, Calif.

Monday, June 10, 2019

**Golf Central Live From the U.S. Open continues Tuesday at 11 a.m. ET on GOLF Channel, and in primetime at 7 p.m. ET.**

On Brooks Koepka

Brandel Chamblee – “At this stage of his career I think you can say that there’s never been a player like him in the history of the game. At least I can’t recall one. He’s like the opposite of Greg Norman. Even though Greg Norman won two major championships, you could say that he certainly underperformed given his talent and his dominance. 331 weeks Greg Norman was No. 1 in the world, yet when he showed up at majors he didn’t play anywhere near to that sort of dominance. You look at athletes who weren’t able to get it done on the biggest stage: Ted Williams, Dan Marino. Then you look at athletes like Serena Williams. She’s won 23 [grand slams]. [Koepka] shows up at regular TOUR events and it’s almost like he’s bored. And yet he shows up here, and nobody would be surprised if he walked away and won.”

David Duval – “The back-to-back U.S. Opens he won might not have been considered traditional setups. But you get to Bethpage Black, and it was more representative of a U.S. Open than what you might typically find at a PGA [Championship]. I think he learned a lot from Bethpage with what happened over the course of the final round. He was shaken, but I think he’s going to have a good chance this week.”

On Tiger Woods

Chamblee – “What a transformation he’s made since 2000. He’s gone from being held in awe by everybody to being beloved by everybody. He’s gone from embarrassing everybody with that 15-shot win to inspiring everybody with his Masters win [this year]. He’s remade himself both as a person and as a player, but yet he still remains the most transformative figure in the history of the game. Proving that he can still win in a game that he turned into a sport.”

Chamblee – As it relates to victory [this week], you start to look at what type of player Pebble Beach has divined out. It’s divined out players with the most control who were scramblers. There’s nobody in the top-10 in the world that plays with more control than Tiger Woods does. He still has the scrambling skills that we saw on display last year. The big question is – as moss sort of creeps up his limbs as he gets a little older – can he putt as well as he used to on poa annua? His putting is not quite what it was. That is the only question mark I see with Tiger this week.”

On Rory McIlroy

Frank Nobilo – “Once he gets that bounce in the step and the smile comes up, he’s a bit like Tiger Woods all through the 2000s. He’s an easy player to embrace. But you’ve got to look at [this] golf course. He hits it right-to-left. A lot of players have played well here with that shot shape. From 75-100 yards, he’s not in the top-200 on the PGA TOUR. He’s aware of the gaps. If he just plugs a couple of those holes, it’s hard to think that he won’t be in contention.”

On Justin Thomas

Chamblee – “I like what I saw last week at the Canadian Open with the exception of what he did with [his putter]. Only Rory McIlroy was better strokes gained tee-to-green last week. Lots of concerns about his wrist. It seems to me he put those to bed last week. Tee-to-green he was brilliant. On the greens, he was far from brilliant.”

On Pebble Beach Golf Links

Chamblee – “This golf course I think turns everybody into a conservationist. It’s impossible to play around here and not feel some gratitude for the fact that somebody had the foresight to build and preserve this piece of property. This canvas of 20,000 acres is relatively unchanged from when this golf course was built. So in a lot of aspects this week, this golf course will tell us just how much this game has changed – perhaps – for the worst. At the end of the week, maybe it quells a lot of the concerns that people have for the game. [Or] maybe it’s the straw that breaks the camel’s back. There’s a lot more to talk about this week than who wins, and a lot more to look at than the scenery.”

Nobilo – “Golf, unlike any other sport, the dimensions change so dramatically. We have arenas that change.”

Duval – “We’ll have a good measure at the end of this week of where the game stands. This is obviously an iconic place, but it also doesn’t necessarily favor distance. You have to have precision. It’s hard to be here and not think about what Tiger Woods did 19 years ago. I don’t think there’s any question that it’s the greatest tournament ever played.”

-NBC Sports Group-