PGA Tour

On Kobe, baby poop and loving the Dodgers … Max Homa gives one of the greatest winner’s press conferences ever

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Max Homa celebrates with the surf board trophy after winning the Farmers Insurance Open.

Orlando Ramirez

SAN DIEGO — The world knows how off-beat funny and observant Max Homa is with the 240 characters provided him on Twitter. If there were trophies handed out for droll asides, he’d need a building the size of The Met to house them.

What we’ve found out more and more—first with a now-defunct podcast and currently a run of five wins in the last two years—is that the Californian can be just as entertaining with the spoken word. Better, actually, because you can simply ask a question and let him riff.

And after a triumph as meaningful to Homa as Saturday’s win in the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines, where he shot a closing six-under-par 66 on the South Course to beat Keegan Bradley by two, the 32-year-old from Los Angeles was at his most loquacious. He expounded on his wife’s frightening experience last year while giving birth to their son Cam; on the joys and dirty duties of being new dad; on the inspiration of his late idol, Kobe Bryant; on his love for the Dodgers and annoyances with Padres fans; and on his mic’d up experience with CBS on Friday that he hopes sets the tone for the future of golf broadcasting.

The 20 minutes he spent speaking to the media after the sixth win of his PGA Tour career and the fourth in the last two years was fascinating, insightful and just plain fun. There is a reason why at the end of a long day, thousands of fans surrounding the 18th green were chanting “Ho-ma! Ho-ma! Ho-ma!” He is probably the most relatable golfer out there, and the love is only going to get stronger for one of the greatest talkers in sports.

So … take it away Max.

First, on a serious note, Homa said his wife, Lacey, had a difficult time in delivery when their first child, Cam, was born on Nov. 1.

“I've been so fortunate that my wife just seems to handle everything so easily. She had a horrendous birth, it did not go well. It was the scariest … hard to say because it was an amazing day, get a new son, Cam. It was the worst day ever at the same time. … So she's just made everything so easy. And I still go practice, but I think I just manage my time a bit better.”

On how soon the Farmers champ will be changing diapers.

“It will happen. The sun will come up tomorrow and my son will need a diaper change many times before that. So I will be changing diapers, I will enjoy every second of it as I always do. It's going to feel even better than normal. If he screams at me, I will just be smiling ear to ear. Yeah, these tournaments are hard, man, but it puts you in the best mood ever when you come out on top. He can poop away, and I'll just be here for him.”

On having to hear Padres faithful at Torrey ragging him and his caddie, Joe Greiner, who are die-hard Dodgers fans.

“It's all in good fun. They talk a very big game, which is just wild to me. They have all the pressure in the world on them this year. They've spent all the money that we had been spending, so if they don't win, then they can hear the same stuff they chirp back at us as Dodger fans. Yeah, it's nice to win up and down the state of California and carry that L.A. logo both on my head and in my heart. … I don't talk back to anybody in the crowd about the Dodger-Padres thing but Joe does, so I enjoy listening to him talk his trash back to them.”

On the experience of wearing a mic on Friday and speaking to the CBS broadcasters while he played the South’s 13th hole. It was a first for an official PGA Tour event.

“I'm very excited about the idea. I'm sure if we could tweet things how other people want to do it, how other players want to do it. If they don't want to do it, I'll keep doing it; it didn't bother me. I thought it was great for the fans to look into, push that envelope for the fans. …

“It was great. It was cool to win after doing it. You always hear people say, ‘Oh, Tiger [Woods] would never do this, [Jon] Rahm would never do this, all they care about is winning.’ I get that, but you can do both. It was definitely nice to win doing that yesterday.”

On the influence of Kobe Bryant’s life and death on him.

“I actually thought about it, [of] him a little bit throughout the day. This is the golf tournament where we found out [in 2020] he had passed away tragically, so this place has a weird … I have a weird feeling towards it. I love it and it has like a weird sadness to it.

“What I learned from Kobe Bryant's teachings and watching him work at his craft back in the day is he puts in all these hours behind the scenes so that when he's on camera doing his thing, he can just let it happen. So, I try to take that with me and I try to embrace the craziness and the pressure and all of that because that's what I saw him do and I was enamored by that.”