— PGA TOUR Communications (@PGATOURComms) March 15, 2017
Yeah, Yeah, I know were a tad late on this one, but it’s never too late to honor The King himself. In case you guys missed it, the Arnold Palmer invitational at Bayhill was this past weekend. This is the first year, the traditionally early on annual tournament took place since the death of Arnold Palmer last year. One of the way too many greats taken from us in the bloodbath that was 2016.
A lot of people don’t realize how much of an impact Arnold Palmer had on the game of golf. We don’t have golf and the PGA Tour the way we know it today without Arnold Palmer. He was one of the first big personalities and he had the game to back it up. There is no Tiger Woods without Arnold Palmer. By every measurable statistic, Palmer is a top 3 golfer of all time. Yes, there’s Ben Hogan, Sam Sneed, Byron Nelson, Billy Casper, Phil Mickelson and Bobby Jones, all legendary in their own right. The golf Holy Grail, if you will, is set and its a club of 3. In no specific order, Jack Nicklaus, Tiger Woods and Arnold Palmer.
Arnold Palmer was always someone who connected with younger players as he got older. He was a guiding light and a beacon for success for any young golfer trying to climb the ranks. There isn’t a guy on tour that doesn’t have a fantastic thing to say about Arnie and a story to match. That’s what makes this video and gesture so great.
Palmer was a guy who beloved tradition and had the utmost respect for the game and the integrity that went along with it. This is the golf world’s version of the 21 gun salute or the touching of the ice in hockey.
Sam Saunders, Arnold Palmer’s grandson, fittingly hit the first shot to start the domino effect.
I would be remiss if I didn’t also pay proper honor to Arnie for creating the single greatest soft beverage on the planet. Half lemonade, half iced tea, back then? It can be described the same way Arnold Palmer lived his entire life, fucking revolutionary.