Brandel Chamblee recalls Secretariat, Steffi Graf, Tiger in calling U.S. Presidents Cup team 'maybe the most perfect ever'
It is not true that Brandel Chamblee is a wind-up analyst that Golf Channel turns loose on its audience in the wake of something memorable occurring. It only seems that way.
So it was that Chamblee, who on these occasions blends research with thought and infuses it with passion, took on the dominating performance by the U.S. Presidents Cup team after opening a 14½-3½ lead on Saturday.
We’re not sure he stopped to take a breath, but here it is:
“I’ve heard it all day, blowouts are boring. And I get it. This outcome is not in doubt. But why do we watch sports, why are sports so captivating? Because they give us such vivid examples of excellence. Nothing does that like a runaway victory.
“Think about it. Do we ever stop talking about the 31-length win by Secretariat? He’s not just running against a herd of mules. Those were blue-blood thoroughbreds. Secretariat, two minutes, 24 seconds. Every single second was electrifying.
“Think about 1988, Steffi Graf. Steffi Graf won 22 grand slams. She beat Natasha Zvereva, 17 years old, but she didn’t see this coming. This was 32 minutes of perfection, six love, six love [in the French Open final]. Steffi Graf was never better.
“Think about Tiger Woods for crying out loud…He won the U.S. Open by 15 strokes. I was there. He beat me by 34 shots. You can call me a mule. That might fly. But he beat the guy to my left [David Duval] by 19 shots. You don’t call him a mule. He got to No. 1 in the world.
“These wins are indelible because they give us a snapshot of that ephemeral state of perfection that every athlete is chasing. We all do. But you don’t get to dance with it. That’s what we’re watching right now. You just don’t get to see this very often.
“This might just be the most perfect team ever assembled. And you’ll say, ‘OK, wait a minute, hold on. They haven’t done that much, not compared to other teams.’ OK, not yet. But the way they companied themselves, the way they combine, this might be it.”
At least we think he used the word "companied." It was one breathlessly entertaining analysis that was a reminder why he's the No. 1 studio analyst in golf.