The Fringe: Zach Johnson Calls Jordan Spieth a 'Rare Talent'

By Matthew Castonguay
Thursday July 10th, 2014 11:31 am EDT

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Welcome to The Fringe, Back9Network’s daily feature created to keep you up to date on the best stories happening in golf, social media and pop culture.

Zach Johnson: Jordan Spieth is a ‘Rare Talent’ 

By now, everyone knows that Jordan Spieth is something special. He’s just 20 years old but has already accomplished more in his PGA Tour career than most ever will. Spieth’s peers took notice early and now, thanks to his meteoric rise, he has their full attention. Just ask 2007 Masters champ Zach Johnson what he thinks of Spieth and he’ll tell you just how special he is. 

“I think Jordan’s unique. There may be a couple other guys here in the near future, but for the most part, we ain’t going to see that,” Johnson said during his press conference at the John Deere Classic. “What he’s done and what he’s continuing to do is not normal.”

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Spieth entered last year with no status on the PGA Tour. By the end of it, he was a winner on the PGA Tour, had a Masters invite in the mail and was part of Fred Couples’ U.S. Presidents Cup squad. Not too shabby for a guy who can’t even legally celebrate with an adult beverage. 

“I know there’s some guys coming up that have that potential, but what he’s done is not normal by any means,” Johnson said. “I don’t know who else you’d throw in that category other than maybe like Tiger … there’s not many of them. Rory. He was in his late teens. You have Sergio. But we’re talking about three or four, four or five guys.”

Would you say, a “rare talent?”

“Rare. That quick.”

Johnson should know. He saw first-hand how good Spieth was when he lost to him in a playoff in last year’s John Deere Classic. For the first time in his career, Spieth will look to defend his title. 

Related Link: Spieth, Johnson to Race John Deere Golf Carts?


adidas Golf Shows the Importance of Freedom of Movement

It’s not uncommon to walk into a pro shop, see a shirt you like and then put it back after seeing the price. You might think to yourself, “Oh, it’s just a shirt, that’s ridiculous.” But what you don’t see is all the science that goes into developing these performance shirts. One of the leading innovators in this field is adidas Golf.

In this video, the company breaks down the science of what happens when you swing and why freedom of movement is so important: 

Ah, yes … the shirt that gets stuck. I’d be willing to bet everyone who plays golf has probably experienced this feeling. Maybe you write it off as a bad swing or refuse to blame it on something silly like your shirt. But hey, now you’ve got scientific proof that your shirt can royally mess up your swing. 

You know, unless you’re wearing adidas Golf’s Pure Motion apparel … then it’s probably just your swing. 


Michelle Wie Felt Like … A Donut? 

It’s hard to imagine what feelings you have when you become a major champion. It’s also not uncommon for that newly crowned champion to struggle to find words to describe that feeling. And, sometimes, the words they do choose can be a little, um … odd? 

In the case of Michelle Wie, I’m not really sure what she was driving at when she said “I felt like a donut fresh out of the fryer, rolling around in the sugar,” in her press conference on Wednesday.

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Umm … come again? Like a donut out fresh out of the fryer? I don’t even know that that means. It sounds more like something Ricky Bobby would say describing a win than Michelle Wie. 

Whatever she meant by the comments, you can’t take anything away from her stellar performance at Pinehurst. It seems like Wie has been around forever, a veteran at 24, and now she’s a major champion. You can’t blame her for being excited. 

Related Link: Wie Hits NYC For Epic U.S. Women’s Open Media Tour


In Case You Missed It

Paula Creamer Among Golf’s Best Nominated at the ESPYs

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Earlier this year, Paula Creamer authored one of the most clutch putts in recent memory to seal victory at the HSBC Women’s Championship. It was her first victory since her major breakthrough at the 2010 U.S. Women’s Open at Oakmont. 

Now, Creamer finds herself up for an ESPY because of it. Her 75-footer to win is in the final four in the “Best Play” category. In case you’ve forgotten about the epic putt or you just missed it, here it is. Read More

Parnevik Survives Mountain Climbing, Breaks Rib on a Segway

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Jesper Parnevik has been all over the place lately: climbing mountainshanging out with Lana Del Ray. But now it looks like he won’t be doing much for a while after breaking his rib in a freak Segway accident. 

Yes, you read that correctly: a freak Segway accident. As he’s been doing with all of his adventures, Parnevik made sure to share this one on Instagram, too. Read More


Out Of Bounds

I swore I’d never sound like my parents. “I used to walk to school uphill, both ways in a hurricane that spit fire,” or “You kids have no idea how lucky you are; when I was your age we had to play with that pingpong paddle with the rubber band and a ball on it, blah blah blah.” Well, here I am, sounding just like my parents. 

When I was a wee lad, Game Boy was the thing. Whether I was playing TecmoBowl for hours in the car going to Florida or trying to become a Pokemon master in the waiting room at the orthodontist, Game Boy was my savior. The greatest thing in the world. 

Nowadays, these punk kids got no respect, I tell ya. Spoiled by their iPhones, iPads, PSP’s and any other pocket computer, they have no idea, A) how incredible Game Boy was for its time, or B) how good they have it now. Watch these kids react to playing with the thing you and I thought was height of technology and tell me they’re not spoiled:

Unreal. I’m actually mad at these kids. I’m going to find my Game Boy tonight and play it like crazy … if I can find any AAA batteries. 

Related Link: Poulter’s ‘Moment of Truth’ & Players Prepare for Hoylake

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