News & ToursOctober 21, 2014

The Grind: Swimming pools, impressive senior citizens, and The Caddy Girls

Welcome to another edition of The Grind, where we hope Ben Martin made it rain in a Vegas casino on Sunday night. You can do a lot of damage with $1 million in chips. On second thought, you can do a lot of damage with $1 million in chips (Somewhere, John Daly nods his head in agreement). Hmm. Maybe it's best to at least avoid the high-stakes tables until you win your first major . . .

WE'RE BUYING

Ben Martin: Just when it looked like he was going to let his first PGA Tour title slip away, Martin (Clemson product) made a 45-footer for eagle on No. 16 and then birdied No. 18 for a two-shot win over Kevin Streelman (Duke) in a clash of ACC foes. Congrats, Ben. Pretty good for someone who shot 78-79 in the season opener the week before. Golf!

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Mikko Ilonen: Even Europeans who weren't on the Ryder Cup team are unbeatable in match play. The Finnish golfer knocked off Henrik Stenson in the final to pick up the biggest win of his career. After falling to 334th in the world two years ago, Ilonen is up to 37th. Maybe we'll see him in Hazeltine two years from now.

Related: Pictures of PGA Tour wives and girlfriends

Jay Haas: We don't always highlight Champions Tour winners, but when a guy beats a field of young whippersnappers -- some who are a full 10 years younger -- he deserves recognition. Haas won for the first time in 27 months and became just the 18th player 60 and older to win on the senior circuit. Oh, and his son, Bill, was inducted into the Wake Forest Athletic Hall of Fame. Pretty decent weekend to be a Haas.

The Caddy Girls: This group didn't get the deal it wanted on ABC's "Shark Tank," but its presentation impressed the Sharks and investment offers are now rolling in, according to founder Meghan Tarmey. Good for them and it's a great idea because guys are, well, guys.

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The Caddy Girls' primetime appearance also can't be hurting calendar sales. . .

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WE'RE SELLING

Golf club violence: There seems to be a lot of these stories lately, unfortunately, ranging from the weird -- a guy defending a church with a golf club -- to the horrifying -- a guy stabbing a man to death with a putter at a mini-golf course. Can't we all just get along?

Related: 11 PGA Tour sleepers to watch in 2014-15

Task-force denials: Again, we agree with the likes of Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer and Paul Azinger that having a Ryder Cup Task Force is a bit much. But what's the harm in saying you'd be a part of it and help out? If you don't care about the success of the U.S. team, that's one thing, but if you do, why not say you'd help try to find a solution to the recent problems?

Shriners swimming pools: This past week's PGA Tour stop had several pools for golf fans, but do these look like "golf fans" to you?

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We didn't think so.

ON TAP

The PGA Tour heads to Sea Island for the McGladrey Classic, aka that tournament hosted by Davis Love III.

Related: 9 things you need to know about the 2014-15 season

Random tournament fact: Chris Kirk won this event last year, propelling him to a two-win season that landed him a spot on the U.S. Ryder Cup team. Wait. Never mind.

RANDOM PROP BETS OF THE WEEK

-- There will be a swimming pool for fans at Augusta National: 1 million-to-1 odds

Related: 15 signs you watch too much golf on TV

-- Rory McIlroy will win the calendar Grand Slam in 2015: 50-to-1 odds (actual odds)

-- Rory McIlroy will be the overwhelming favorite in Masters betting pools: LOCK

PHOTO OF THE WEEK

Five members of the European Tour shushing Patrick Reed? This might just be the photo of the year.

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These guys on the European Tour sure know how to have fun, eh?

QUOTE OF THE WEEK

"Sixty is some sort of benchmark, not that many guys have done that. It's just a number, I guess. I still like feel I'm capable, especially after this weekend, and it certainly gives me some confidence for the last couple of events and into next year. Hopefully, I won't completely fall off the map when I turn 61 in December." -- Jay Haas. Of course, you won't, Jay! You're going to be the U.S. Presidents Cup captain next year!

VIRAL VIDEOS OF THE WEEK

Rory McIlroy's left-handed shot wasn't all that impressive. However, we appreciated the effort and him asking his lefty playing partner, Bubba Watson, to watch. Oh, and his chip in for par on the same hole wasn't bad, either.

And then there was the much more impressive recovery shot from PGA Tour rookie Justin Thomas. At the U.S. Open, Phil Mickelson said he was a big fan of the former University of Alabama star. Judging by this insane up-and-down from a grandstand, Thomas has been paying attention to Phil as well.

THIS WEEK IN PAULINA GRETZKY-DUSTIN JOHNSON PAULA CREAMER-MACHINE GUN PUBLIC DISPLAYS OF AFFECTION

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"I love it!" Creamer exclaimed.

Paula, we admire you taking the time out of your schedule to pay the troops in Korea a visit, but you're scaring us.

THIS AND THAT

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Rory McIlroy will take time off from golf to prepare for his court case against his former management company, Horizon Sports. Wait, did Rory go to law school during the off-season? . . . Tiger Woods is back to hitting full shots and "feeling pretty good." We've heard this one before, so we're not getting too excited yet. . . . Kyu Jung Baek topped Brittany Lincicome and Gee Chun in a playoff to claim the KEB-Hana Bank Championship in her first career start on the LPGA Tour. How's that for a debut? And it came just four days after Baek celebrated her 19th birthday. . . . An 81-year-old man had a hole-in-one on three consecutive days. If he's a real golfer, he's probably still complaining about the first 80 years of his playing career. . . . Apparently, McDonald's popular McRib is only coming to select locations this year. That makes my buddy, Chris, sad. But hopefully, this shirt our friends got him cheers him up.

RANDOM QUESTIONS TO PONDER

Which PGA Tour player would make the best lawyer?

Is Ben Martin this year's Jimmy Walker?

What exactly is in a McRib?

-- Alex Myers is an Associate Editor for GolfDigest.com. Feel free to email him and please follow him on Twitter since he has self-esteem issues.

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