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Report: John Daly reveals he has cancer

September 10, 2020

Steve Dykes

John Daly revealed he has been diagnosed with bladder cancer on an upcoming episode of “PGA Tour Champions Learning Center,” according to the Golf Channel.

Daly, 54, told the Golf Channel he withdrew from last month’s Charles Schwab Series in Missouri after dealing with kidney stones and back pain. But a visit to the doctor showed it was more than kidney stones ailing Daly.

“[The urologist said] it doesn’t look like any stones are in there. But unfortunately, you have bladder cancer,” Daly told the Golf Channel. “After I did the CT [scan] I was fixing to sip on my Diet Coke and he said, ‘Don’t drink anything. We have to get you back in here and get this cancer out of you.’ ”

The two-time major winner said he underwent a procedure to remove the cancer, which was successful. However, he asserted a need to stay vigilant, noting his cancer has an 85 percent chance of recurrence. “So I’ve got to go back and see him in three months. They will probably have to cut it out again," Daly said. "It’s probably going to come back, and then another three months that you don’t know. You just don’t know. Luckily for me they caught it early, but bladder cancer is something that I don’t know all the details. But it doesn’t look like it may go away. We will just see what happens. Maybe there’s a miracle."

On Friday, the day after the story broke, Daly went out and shot two-under-par 68 in the Sanford International in Sioux Falls, S.D., to be tied for 11th place.

Daly, whose health and battles with alcohol have been concerns throughout his career, said the diagnosis made him re-evaluate his habits.

"I’m cutting way, way back on the Diet Coke and counting minutes before I can have a cigarette. I’m trying to quit smoking," Daly said. "The doctors aren’t saying it’s too late. Unfortunately, it’s a cancer that keeps coming back. But I’m going to listen to them, and I’m going to try and quit smoking. If it comes back, it comes back. Six months to a year, if it doesn’t go away, I’m going to live my life. I’m gonna have some fun."

Daly acknowledged he’s had “one hell of a life,” but did not express any notion of surrender, saying he’s ready for the obstacles ahead.

“No matter what happens, I’m not scared to die or anything,” Daly said. “It would have been nice to play the last seven or eight or 13 years of my career a little more healthy. But hey, I’m still working, I’m still living life, I’m still doing the things I need to do ... I can accept the challenge. I’m not scared of that. I just want my kids to be OK and everyone else in my family.”

Daly’s interview will be aired on the Golf Channel Monday night.