Back in the Winner's Circle: John Daly

Posted by: mike May 19th, 2017

By Steve Trivett


John Daly is back in the winner’s circle.

And the world of professional golf just got a lot more fun.

Daly won his first tournament in 13 years when he captured the Insperity Invitational on the Champions Tour – despite trying to give it away over his final three holes, finishing bogey-bogey-bogey.

But that’s just John being John.John Daly

“It wasn’t pretty at the end,” Daly said. “But I got it done and that’s all that matters.”

Like him or not – and most folks are either one way or the other when it comes to Daly – he’s one of the guys who moves the needle in professional golf.

Yes, he has had problems.

Lots of problems.

He has had gambling problems.

He has had drinking problems.

He has had smoking problems.

He has had wife-picking problems.

He’s run off enough big-money sponsors that would have kept other guys on tour for their entire careers.

But he’s still the guy people want to watch – maybe for the same reasons many people watch motor sports.

For nothing gets one’s attention like a car wreck.

And Daly has a history of being a walking, talking, smoking, drinking car wreck waiting to happen.

But he’s also a man of the people – at least according to a lot of people.

 And when he posted his first win on the Champions Tour, it was a signal that we haven’t seen the last of Daly yet.

And – OK, go ahead and call me a fool – that’s good.

Because golf – and life in many ways - is still a game and nobody plays both like Long John.

He’s a mixture of Walter Mitty, Joe Hardy and Peter Pan.

And in a lot of ways that’s a mixture that appeals to a lot of other people.

We wish we could march to our own drummer, but we can’t.

John can, and that’s another reason we can’t stop thinking, caring and worrying about him.

And when he succeeds, we want to share in his success – because a lot of us have had our demons, too.

And overcoming demons is the biggest victory of all.


Steve is a long time veteran golf writer. He's already on the far side of 70 - which explains how Steve Trivett started covering the PGA Tour in 1963. He's an award-winning journalist who has worked for the Colorado Springs Gazette Telegraph, The late great Rocky Mountain News and The Villages Daily Sun. He once carried a single-digit handicap, but his ball striking finally reached the depth of his putting prowess.