The Loop

Campbell, Kim Still On Ryder Cup High

September 23, 2008

ATLANTA -- Most of the members of the victorious American Ryder Cup team have begun staggering into East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta for the Tour Championship, with the accent on the stagger. The U.S. team, along with several members of the European side, stayed up until the approach of dawn Monday morning celebrating the week that was in Kentucky.

"We had a good time that night," Chad Campbell said, allowing as how he packed it in around 3 a.m. or so. "We were just having a really good time. We had a few drinks out of the Cup. It doesn't hold that much."

The Americans even serenaded the Euros with their own rendition of the "Ole, Ole" chant. "Yeah, we were doing all sorts of stuff," said Campbell. "Who knows what we were doing?"

Anthony Kim, the 23-year-old Ryder Cup rookie who dispatched Sergio Garcia in the crucial opening singles match, still hasn't stopped grinning. "I just had the best week of golf in my entire life," said Kim, "the best experience of my life. It's something I'll cherish for a very long time."

He cherished it so much on Sunday, he didn't even know when it was over. Having dispatched Garcia, 5 and 4, Kim went charging off to the next tee. His caddie, Eric Larson, yelled after him, "AK! AK!", and then gave him the cinematic sign for 'cut.' Kim turned around and broke into one of his most engaging grins. What did Sergio say to him?

"He did say, 'Do you want to keep playing more?' I still thought we had some more holes to go," Kim said. "That was because Sergio is a good player and I didn't want to not focus on every golf shot. I didn't even know what hole we were on."

Virtually all of the Ryder Cuppers have been effusive in their praise of Captain Paul Azinger, in particular, the way he deflected the pressure of the matches. "Paul Azinger said something very important that stuck with me through the whole day," Kim said. "He said, 'You have nothing to lose. Just go out there and play your game. You have a lot of game, just go out there and let the world see it.' " Did they ever.

--Jim Moriarty