Monday, June 1

ARMCHAIR GOLF Roundtable: Johnny Miller and Nick Faldo


Nick Faldo at a golf outing. (Troon Golf/Flickr)

Editor’s note: These are real quotes and comments. The questions are made up. Welcome to the ARMCHAIR GOLF roundtable.

At the roundtable:
Johnny Miller – Two-time major winner and NBC lead golf analyst
Nick Faldo – Six-time major winner and CBS lead golf analyst

Q: Gentlemen, welcome to the roundtable. Johnny, let’s start with you. You’re known for speaking your mind, even saying the world’s best golfers choke.

JOHNNY MILLER:
Everyone has his own choking level, a level at which he fails to play his normal golf. As you get more experienced, your choking level rises.

Q: Nick, what’s your take on dealing with the pressure?

NICK FALDO: It’s all about the bottle, the British term meaning the ability to be in a situation and feel comfortable, be in control and have the mental toughness to get the job done.

Q: So when you were playing …


NICK FALDO: The word is control. That’s my ultimate, to have control.

Q: Johnny, what about on the greens? You struggled late in your career. How would you describe the yips
?

JOHNNY MILLER:
Basically, it’s the inability to make your hands obey the commands your mind gives them.

Q: Any other problem areas you see in other players?


JOHNNY MILLER: Too many people carry the last shot with them. It is a heavy and useless burden.

Q: What advice would you give, Nick?


NICK FALDO: Listen to your heart and gut. That small voice inside you. How often have you left the house knowing you’ve forgotten something, and it turns out you have? Intuition is very powerful, and certainly it’s true in golf.

Q: The U.S. Open is just a few weeks away. You’ve called it an exam. What did you mean by that?


NICK FALDO:
You’ve got a fairly good idea as to what the questions are going to be. But how to record the best answer is another matter.

Q: Johnny, your thoughts on the U.S. Open?

JOHNNY MILLER:
I think Darth Vader is actually a USGA official.

Q: Still, it’s a …

NICK FALDO:
The majors are what golf’s all about. The other ones you play for the prize money. These you play to get your name on a piece of silver.

Q: Actually, that’s a good segue. Talk a bit about your place in golf.


JOHNNY MILLER:
I try to be semi-humble. If I started going around saying how good I was, everything would go wrong.

Q: Who was the most talented player you ever saw?


JOHNNY MILLER:
I’m not sure the most talented player I ever saw wasn’t myself.

Q: Nick?


NICK FALDO: Years from now I want people to be able to say, “I saw Faldo play.”

Q: Anything else, fellas?


GARY MCCORD: There are two things that guys on Tour do not like: playing in the wind and me dating their sister.

Q: Oh, hey, Gary. Thanks for your time, Johnny, Nick and, um, Gary.


–The Armchair Golfer


Other ARMCHAIR GOLF roundtables:

Hogan, Snead and Nelson

(Source: The Gigantic Book of Golf Quotations, published by Skyhorse Publishing.)

5 comments :

Lancer said...

I like both Faldo and Miller, although both take some getting used to. McCord turns me off. The announcers for the European PGA seem to do so much better without trying to be comedians.

One-Eyed Golfer said...

I think Faldo threw in the 'only the majors are important' comment to remind Miller that Johnny had two, NOT fifteen like he often thinks he has...

Neil, do your interview guests visit your personal round table in West Virginia or do you find round tables wherever the interviewees are?

Ankur said...

Faldo and Miller are really great names . This questionare is really nice to read on . Miller is known for saying his heart , this conversation is solid proof of it thank you once again.

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The Armchair Golfer said...

Great question, One-Eyed. Actually, I live in Virginia. But funny you mention West Virginia, because that's where roundtable sessions take place -- at The Greenbrier in White Sulphur Springs, Sam Snead's old haunt.

Heather said...

So that's how you land these guys. A good old-fashioned junket at the Greenbrier. Sounds like a Washingtonian thing to me!