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Equipment

Jack Nicklaus was so good he used the same 3-wood for 37(!) years

Of all Jack Nicklaus' accomplishments -- 18 professional majors, 73 PGA Tour titles, etc. -- one number might stun golf fans more than any: 37. As in the 37 years Nicklaus used the same MacGregor Tommy Armour 3-wood.

Related: The most important clubs in Masters history

The magical club is on display with other artifacts from Jack's storied career at the USGA's new Jack Nicklaus Room in Far Hills, N.J. Nicklaus used the 3-wood from 1958 through 1995, meaning he won all of those majors (beginning with the 1962 U.S. Open and ending with the 1986 Masters) and PGA Tour titles with it in the bag.

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This would be incredible in any era, but in an age when even amateurs update clubs on an annual basis, it's downright astonishing. Can you imagine Rory McIlroy winning the 2035 Masters with the same 3-wood he had in the bag to win his first major at the 2011 U.S. Open? Will the 3-wood even exist in 2035?

And it wasn't just that 3-wood. Our Mike Johnson wrote about Nicklaus' tendency to stick with clubs he liked in the June 7, 2010 edition of Golf World.

"Jack hardly changed anything," said Clay Long, who worked on Nicklaus' equipment at MacGregor.

Sounds like an easy gig.

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News & Tours

Husband and wife make back-to-back aces on the same hole (Yes, this really happened)

Just when you think you've heard every possible hole-in-one story, a new one comes along more incredible than any you've heard. A husband and wife?! Back-to-back aces?! Yep, it happened.

The story of the Blundys comes from the Lansing State Journal, and seems legit thanks to a pair of witnesses who saw what went down on the 16th hole at Ledge Meadows Golf Course in Grand Ledge, Mich. on Sunday. Tony Blundy went first and one-hopped a 7-iron into the hole from 135 yards out.

Related: 15 wacky golf Guinness World Records

It was Tony's first hole-in-one, which matched his wife, Janet's, total. But apparently, Janet had no interest in staying tied with her husband. "You're going to be really mad when I put mine in," she said as she walked to the women's tee box. She then knocked in her pitching wedge from 110 yards.

In other words, Janet Blundy is the Babe Ruth of calling golf shots.

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The National Hole In One Association puts the odds of two amateurs in the same foursome making an ace on the same hole at 26 million-to-one. Simple math would make the odds of both players in a twosome doing it on a consecutive shot at least twice that. And as far as a husband-wife combo to pull off the feat? Let's just say it's pretty unlikely considering there doesn't seem to be another recorded instance of it happening.

Related: Pictures of PGA Tour wives and girlfriends

"It's surreal. I keep expecting to wake up and it's a dream," Janet said. "If I do, I'm gonna be mad."

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Art

Interior designers take note: A larger-than-life Tiger Woods wall decal from Fathead

The Tiger Woods fist pump as a design element probably has never occurred to certified interior designers, but that was before this: The larger-than-life Tiger Woods Fathead wall decal.

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Fathead announced recently that it had secured licensing rights to produce these vinyl wall decals for Tiger Woods, Michael Jordan and Wayne Gretzky. Put them all up together and you’d have a veritable wall of fame.

“We’ve had this extraordinary deal in our sights for quite a while,” Patrick McInnis, Chief Executive Officer of Fathead, told Forbes. “The demand Fathead has received for these iconic athletes is unprecedented.”

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The Tiger Woods fist pump decal (shown above) measures six feet, four inches, or three inches taller than Woods himself. It’s available for $100. There are several other Woods’ decals, including those of variable sizes, one of which is what Fathead calls a Big Head (shown here). There are also Woods’ wall murals and a high-definition stand out.

Fathead previously has offered wall decals of Ian Poulter and John Daly, as well as wall murals of various golf holes.

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Video

Watch a mountain lion play with a flagstick on an Arizona golf course

Here is your mindless entertainment for the day. A mountain lion came onto the Desert Mountain Golf Course in Scottsdale and played with the flagstick on the 18th hole. Just sit back and watch:

Another day in paradise… while a Mountain Lion plays with a the flag on #18 of the Chiricahua course at Desert Mountain last week.

Posted by Wendie Marlais on Tuesday, May 26, 2015

If this sounds familiar, you're right. Last year a bear did the same thing at a course in British Columbia.

Related: The top 25 viral videos of 2014

This time, the people filming the brush with nature didn't get as close. Probably a smart idea.

(h/t Golf News Net)

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Trending

The 300-yard markers at this golf course say "Only Bubba"

Kudos to golf courses that have a sense of humor. One Reddit user says the 300-yard markers at his home course in Illinois say, "Only Bubba."

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This is refreshing. I always shake my head when I see sprinkler heads that offer ridiculous yardages that 99.9 percent of golfers would never actually need. Like the "332" one I recently saw. Is that a soft 6-iron or a hard 7?

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A couple other Reddit users chimed in on funny messages they've seen:

"There's a sprinkler head at one of the local courses that is 300+ yards and it says, 'You're not Tiger.'"

"There's one on my home course that just says, 'Dream On.'"

"There's one course I played where a marker said, 'Just hit the damn ball.'"

"I saw one that said, 'More than you got.'"

Thanks for bringing this to our attention, GolfNewsNet.

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Celebrity

J.R. Smith celebrates the Cleveland Cavaliers winning the Eastern Conference Finals by going to play golf

At the start of 2015, J.R. Smith was on a team with the worst record in pro basketball. Now a few months later, he's headed to the NBA Finals.

But first, it's time to celebrate by playing a little golf.

Related: 11 questions with golf fanatic J.R. Smith

On Wednesday morning, Smith posted this photo indicating his plans to play and showing off the NBA Finals hat he's been wearing since the Cleveland Cavaliers finished off their sweep of the Atlanta Hawks on Tuesday night:

Going to the golf course like!!!

A photo posted by JR Smith (@teamswish) on

In fact, Smith and teammates LeBron James, Kyrie Irving, Iman Shumpert and Kendrick Perkins were so excited about the hats that they wore them in a post-game hot tub celebration as well:

What more can I say!! ##JustSaying @k1irving @imanshumpertthe1st @perk_409

A video posted by JR Smith (@teamswish) on

The Grind: Bubba goes in the dunk tank and Keegan/Jillian go out in NYC

Up next, the Cavs will likely face another avid golfer, Stephen Curry, and his Golden State Warriors. And because the Cavs made such quick work of the Hawks, they'll now have eight days off before the Finals start. Enjoy, J.R.

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Courses & Travel

Six things that happen when you go to the grand opening of Trump National Ferry Point

We were on hand for the grand opening of Trump National Ferry Point. Here are six things that happened:

1. The parks department gives you a history lesson about the land the course is built on. This particular section of the Bronx was once a landfill. After a few decades of back and forth, they've finally converted what was once a mess, into a golf course. (No one is quite sure how much money it actually took to make that happen. The closest answer? A ton.)  

Related: Golf courses that were built on unconventional sites

2. You get to play links golf. With the sloping fairways, fescue growing on mounds all over the course, and wind whipping off the East River, you could've thought you were in Ireland -- if Ireland had 90-degree days and a view of the Manhattan Skyline. 

3. You see the Trump helicopter, along with the rest of the family. Ivanka even hit a tee shot in heels. #impressed   

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4. Jack and Barbara Nicklaus, show up -- as modest and lovable as ever. I had never met Jack before, and I fan-girled, as expected. And he was awesome, as expected.

5. You get to see a sense of community. In a city of millions, it can be easy to lose the camaraderie that comes with being a part of an active community. The course hired 60 Bronx residents. Everyone working there knows each other, and knows that the course they're working at is something unlike anything the Bronx has seen.  

6. Views! There are views of the East River, the Manhattan skyline, and both the Whitestone and Throgsneck bridges from multiple spots on the course. But the best is coming up 18: When you're hitting in, the green feels like it's tucked under the Whitestone.  

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Fantasy Golf

Fantasy Fix: How Jordan Spieth could make (odd) history at the Byron Nelson

You probably didn't realize it, but Jordan Spieth has a chance to make history this week at the AT&T Byron Nelson -- not that he necessarily wants to. The reigning Masters champ has finished runner-up in all three PGA Tour events played in his home state of Texas this season. Should he make it four for four -- the Lone Star Second-Place Slam? Hmm, let's work on this -- it would be an impressive, yet frustrating feat. What's sure to frustrate everyone in the field, fans, and tournament officials, though, is the record amount of rain the Dallas-Fort Worth area continues to get in May. The soggy conditions at TPC Las Colinas will give long hitters a huge advantage both in winning the tournament and for picking up fantasy points. Finding fairways will be easier, but picking up those five-pointers for 300-yard pokes is going to require guys who can carry the ball a long way. Whose brawny arms are we turning to for help? Here's our weekly PGA Tour Fantasy Golf lineup:

Related: Sign up for PGA Tour Fantasy Golf

Jordan Spieth: Not a bomber, but not short by any means, either. Plus, he's Jordan Spieth. Consider that he was in contention at this event in the final round when he was 17. Now he's all of 21 and as we mentioned, his record in Texas is pretty good. We'll use him hear and save his final start of this segment for the U.S. Open.

Jimmy Walker: A Texan by residence and a long hitter, Walker has been mired in a slump since injuring his left wrist at the Masters. It can't be much of a concern with him playing back-to-back weeks, though, and with his recent struggles, this is the rare time you can pick the second-ranked player in the FedEx Cup standings as somewhat of a sleeper.

The Grind: Bubba goes in the dunk tank and Keegan/Jillian go out in NYC

Jason Day: The Aussie has been relatively quiet since his hot start to the season, but he should get back on track at the Byron Nelson. Day won his first PGA Tour event here in 2010 and has two other top 10s at Las Colinas in his three starts since.

UPDATE: Day, along with several other players including Ian Poulter have withdrawn. We'll replace him with arguably the longest hitter in golf, Dustin Johnson.

Marc Leishman: Another long-hitter, the Aussie has finished in the top 12 in five of his six trips to Dallas, including T-3s in two of his past three starts. Since returning to action about a month ago after his wife's health scare, Leishman has finished no worse than T-28 in four events. Oh yeah, and he seems to enjoy himself in the rain.

Bench: Brooks Koepka and Justin Thomas.

And for those of you playing other fantasy golf formats:

Related: 15 signs you watch too much golf on TV

Yahoo! lineup: Palmer, Day, Spieth, Hoffman.
Bench/backups: Koepka, Leishman, Walker, Thomas.

Knockout/One-and-done pick: Leishman.

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Trending

Greg Norman has life figured out, and he has the Instagram account to prove it

Look, not everything's perfect for Greg Norman. He lost those Masters. He's been through a couple of divorces. And he nearly accidentally cut off his hand last year. 

But in case you were wondering whether the Aussie has any time for fun, we again refer you to his fascinating Instagram account, which could double as a travel site for the rugged AARP set.

For instance, here's Greg fishing.

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 And here's Greg fishing some more.

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Here's Greg walking his dogs on the beach, which is probably as good a time as any to remind you that Norman is 60 years old.

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Here's one of several pictures Norman has posted aboard his private jet. The guy's a sucker for a well-constructed wing.

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Here's that time Norman wrestled a sea monster to its demise (or something like that).

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Once in a while Norman even manages to play some golf. Remember he'll be the lead analyst for Fox at this year's U.S. Open, so he's had to bone up on Chambers Bay.

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And in the event 18 holes doesn't get his heart rate up enough, he's happy to slug it out on the tennis court.

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The man is so virile, he feels compelled to give his blood some of the spotlight as well (This was from a recent blood test).

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If they could bottle that stuff and sell it, they should.


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Missing Links

Are hard, fast courses a weakness for Rory McIlroy? Nonsense, Ryder Cup captain says

Stories of interest you might have missed…

Former Ryder Cup captain Paul McGinley said that Rory McIlroy has nothing to prove at the Irish Open this week, “even if McIlroy's game has led to some debate over his perceived weaknesses on hard and fast tracks,” Brian Keogh of the Irish Golf Desk writes. “‘He’s only in his early 20s and he’s still got a lot to achieve and different conditions to get better at,’ McGinley said. ‘But as far as I am concerned he’s way ahead of schedule, that’s for sure. It’s easy to be critical. Debate? There is no debate. He is comfortably the No 1 player in the world.’”

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“Jordan Spieth and his caddie, Michael Greller…compete at table tennis. Cards. Pool. Fishing. They have impromptu putting and chipping contests,” Brad Townsend of the Dallas Morning News writes in this story on the Spieth-Greller pairing. “In most other respects Spieth and Greller are pro golf’s odd couple, but they’ve channeled their competitive natures into Spieth becoming the world’s No. 2-ranked golfer. ‘I think one reason we hit it off so well is I don’t back down from him at all,” Greller said. “I don’t care that he’s Jordan Spieth. To me he’s the same guy I met four years ago. I want to stick it to him so he doesn’t stick it to me.’”

***

Even if Stacy Lewis seemed as though she needed no help when she turned pro, she found invaluable advice from the likes of Betsy King, Beth Daniel, Meg Mallon and Nancy Lopez, Joe Juliano writes in the Philadelphia Inquirer. “Betsy was the reason I went to Africa [for charity] and she helped me kind of find a purpose to what I do,” Lewis said. “Beth and Meg and Nancy, they've helped me on the golf course and dealing with everything. Nancy gets what it's like to be that top American to have the spotlight and Beth does, too.”

***

The AT&T Byron Nelson is a home game for Hunter Mahan, who won’t have a home-course or home-crowd advantage, Bill Nichols writes in the Dallas Morning News. “Mahan criticized the TPC after deciding to skip the event in 2011…Mahan’s return is not a public apology. Although he regrets publicly voicing his criticisms, he still stands by his words. ‘I feel bad; you learn a lot through your experience of how you look at things and how other people look at things,’ he said. ‘I wish I didn’t say things in the media like I did, but there are no emotional ties. I just want to play better. I just want to go there and play well and have a good week.’”

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