It was a good day for the old guys.
Ray Floyd won the most money, $290,000. Lee Trevino mastered his favorite hole again. Jack Nicklaus resurrected his golfing life at the Skins Game.For 33-year-old Curtis Strange, it was a lost weekend.
"I got what I deserved," Strange, the reigning U.S. Open champion, said after he was shut out of the money-winnings.
Earlier, Strange had praised Nicklaus, Trevino and Floyd as "three of the greatest players the game has known. Each has been or will be my Ryder Cup captain.
"And," he jibed, "each is old enough to be my father. After saying that, I get shut out so I guess I got what I deserved," Strange said Sunday.
Strange, the 1988 Player of the Year and the first man to go over $1 million in single-season earnings on the PGA Tour, was a heavy favorite in the two-day, four-man, made-for-television Skins Game.
But for 17 holes he didn't make a birdie and didn't win a hole. On the 18th at PGA West, he rolled in a 40-footer for birdie, but Trevino dropped a shorter one in on top of it to tie the hole and send the Skins Game into overtime.
Floyd, 46, won the first extra hole with a 15-foot birdie putt that was worth $35,000. That went with $165,000 he picked up on the 16th hole and the $90,000 he won Saturday to make him the winner in his first Skins Game appearance and assure him of a spot in the four-man field next year.
"From tee to green, that's the best I've played in several years," Floyd said. "I made several birdies and I made them at the right time. But I think the important thing was that I was in a lot of holes. It seemed like every time I was over a putt, it was to tie or win the hole," Floyd said.
With the carry-overs, he won 12 of the 18 skins. Nicklaus won five, Trevino one.
Trevino, 48, who won the Skins Game in 1987 with the highlight of a hole-in-one on the 17th, was in danger of being shut out this time until he made an across-the-green putt for birdie-2 on the same 17th hole. It was worth $35,000.
Nicklaus, 48, won a total of $125,000, including $50,000 for a birdie on the 11th hole.
It really didn't matter, Nicklaus said.
"We all want to win, to be first," he said. "For maybe the first time in my life, I didn't care if I won a hole. I was just happy to be playing.
"A month ago," said Nicklaus, who has been plagued by increasing trouble with his back, "I didn't know what my future was.
"When you're hurting, your mind isn't rational. I was thinking `what if I can't play againd? What if it's over?' I didn't know what was going to happen," he said. Treatment and exercises have solved the problem, he said.
"The last two days I played without pain for the first time in a long, long time."