We all have various thresholds for tolerance that some might consider irrational. Pet peeves. Small things that can make our neurons explode over something others might consider irrelevant. The kind of triviality that drags you into a Twitter argument while others look on and think, “really?”
I’ll confess there are too many of these insignificant traps laid inside my head. One of them is baited to go off in two months when someone will inevitably refer to top-15 players Xander Schauffele or Tony Finau or Viktor Hovland as “one of the best players never to have won a major.” When that happens, I’m going to snap.
That phrase gets used so often that it cheapens the concept. At the same time, it is grossly unfair to many of the golfers to which it is directed as a combination of compliment and slur. Aside from accepted facts – they’re ranked high in the world and they haven’t won a major championship to date – players such as Schauffele, Finau and Hovland couldn’t be more different. Schauffele has only played in 14 majors; Finau still hasn’t won a non-opposite-field PGA Tour event; Hovland hasn’t even played in every major yet.
Whether the argument is semantic or subjective, there needs to be a codified definition of what qualifies as “greatest” or “best” when it comes to players without majors and when it is fair to judge them for it. Having spent way too much time worrying about such things, I’ve sorted it into two fraternities – GNOMEs (Greatest NO Major Ever) and BP-WAMYs (Best Players Without A Major Yet). One category is a fixed historical achievement. The other is an active registry based on a set of various prerequisite parameters.
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