There are exceptions to every cliche, including this one: Nobody remembers who finished second. Adam Scott’s collapse down the stretch in Sunday’s final round of the British Open will be one of those unforgettable moments in golf.
Scott, a former UNLV standout, had a four-stroke lead with four holes to go. But the claret jug proved to be a greased pig as Scott let his first major championship slip away.
“Nobody saw this coming,” wrote Los Angeles Times columnist Bill Dwyre, who described the “incredible turn of events and a shocking finish.”
How unlikely was the victory by Ernie Els, who trailed Scott by seven shots early in the round? The odds against Els winning soared to 469-1 at one point during the round on live wagering at Betfair.com, an offshore trading book. A $70 bet was made at those odds and paid off $32,830.
According to RJ Bell of Pregame.com, “At his highest point Sunday, if you wanted to back Scott, you had to risk $70 to win $1, implying a 98.6 percent chance of winning.”
So, to twist another cliche, sometimes numbers do lie.
■ HAIR-RAISING ROUTE – New England Patriots wide receiver Wes Welker is battling male pattern baldness at age 31, but he refuses to sit on the sideline while his hair blows away in the wind.
Welker had a hair transplant and will appear in TV and print ads for the Rhode Island doctor who performed it. The doctor said Welker should start to see new hair growth in about four months, and in the meantime he can resume normal activities such as playing football, wearing a helmet and looking in a mirror every morning.
By January, with some luck, Welker hopes to have more hair than Fabio and Troy Polamalu.
■ THE COUNTRY-WESTERN QB – Fans attending a Kenny Chesney concert Saturday at Sports Authority Field at Mile High were treated to a big surprise when Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning and coach John Fox joined the corny country crooner onstage.
Manning and Fox sidled up next to Chesney to sing “Boys of Fall.” A different song had been scripted, but Manning stepped up at the last second, waved his arms and changed the play list.
■ THE NATURAL DISASTER –
While rookie outfielders Mike Trout of the Los Angeles Angels and Bryce Harper of the Washington Nationals grab headlines in the major leagues, another phenomenal story comes from the minors.
But Shaq Thompson is not earning any comparisons to Willie Mays, Mickey Mantle or Roy Hobbs.
Thompson committed to Washington to play college football, and he will follow through with that plan after learning he’s not destined to be a two-sport star.
Thompson spent part of the summer in the Boston Red Sox farm system after receiving a $45,000 signing bonus. His baseball experiment was a bust, to say the least.
In his short season with the Gulf Coast Red Sox, Thompson finished 0-for-39 with 37 strikeouts.
He did produce a flyout in his last game, however, so he left the sport on a positive note.
COMPILED BY MATT YOUMANS
LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL