Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Another sad chapter to John Daly story

The John Daly story, which has become a series of increasingly sad chapters seemingly headed for an even sadder ending, took another twist Wednesday morning at Bay Hill when Big John missed his pro-am tee time for the Arnold Palmer Invitational.

Unless there are extenuating circumstances that excuse Daly’s absence from the first tee – that seems unlikely given his track record – he’s disqualified this week and in an even deeper mess than he’d already found himself for various misdeed including reports of a drunken weekend in Tampa just days ago.

Daly’s self-destructive tendencies appear to be in full flower – again.

That’s too bad.

But it’s not surprising.

And it’s become almost impossible to feel sorry for the guy.

Butch Harmon, who took on Daly as a student late last year, essentially fired Daly this week and ripped him in the process.

Harmon told Doug Ferguson of the Associated Press that Daly needs to “show me golf is the most important thing in his life … and the most important thing in his life is getting drunk.”

There were already reports that Daly was a mess at the Bob Hope Chrysler Classic earlier this year and now there are reports – and video evidence – of Daly getting hammered at a hospitality tent adjacent to Innisbrook last week after he missed the cut in the PODS Championship there.

On Friday, Daly ducked into the Hooters Owl Nest tent during a rain delay and emerged later with Tampa Bay Bucs coach Jon Gruden as his caddie. After missing the cut – something Daly does well these days if he makes it through 36 holes – he showed up Saturday at the Hooters tent again and spent his day drinking.

There is even a video showing Daly being Daly.

On a professional level, Daly is sure to get whacked pretty hard by the PGA Tour, though commissioner Tim Finchem declined to discuss specifics Wednesday until he’s had an opportunity to talk with Daly. A sledgehammer – and an extended vacation from the tour – would work nicely.

Daly is an embarrassment to himself and the PGA Tour.

On a personal level, he needs help. That’s been obvious for years.

What used to be endearing – there was a time when Daly’s flaws made him a blue-collar hero – has become ugly.

It’s hard to believe his story has a happy ending.


Adam Butler said...

Why's it hard to believe this could have a happy ending?

So many athletes through the years have fallen only to succeed later on.

Michael Irvin and Cris Carter come to mind. Both have had substance abuse issues and are now Hall of Famers.

There's no reason John Daly couldn't change again, this time for good.

Anonymous said...

the only reason john daly couldn't change is that he has a disease. the good news is: there is a very effective treatment! let's hope he, and many others, take advantage of it.

Anonymous said...

He's had more than his 15 minutes...the only thing bigger than his belly is his enourmous ego.

Time to fade away into the bunker he almots crawled out of.

Anonymous said...

I've been close enough to John's self-destruction to know that he hurts more people than he benefits. Personal friends have had their lives wrecked by his actions and it's horrific to watch.

Unfortunately the media equation that allows Tiger Woods forgiveness - when his missteps are combined with all his success and benevolence - also labels John Daly a clown-esque joke among the golf greats of this era.

He needs a life coach. Someone with the power to dictate his every move... because the control his addictions and bad habits have over his legacy have become too strong for his own (and the PGA tour's) well-being.