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Michael Phelps… The Next Great Golfer?

130319190452-phelps-pool-swing-vertical-galleryMichael Phelps is the most decorated Olympic athlete of all time having won 18 gold and 22 total medals throughout his career. Phelps has always competed at the highest level and is not accustom to losing, which is what probably makes his post-retirement transition into golf so frustrating.

In an interview with CNN last month, Phelps was quoted saying:

“I don’t get how hitting a little object — a little white ball, that isn’t moving — is so hard. Why can’t I just hit this in a straight line? Or hook it, or draw it, or fade it — I can’t do it.”

This tends to be the response from all non-golfers who don’t understand how technical and mentally challenging the game is. Phelps, someone who claims he’s always been good at picking up sports, is slowly realizing how humbling golf can be; even more so for someone who was previously diagnosed with Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD).

Luckily for Phelps, he’s famous and rich! This has allowed him to learn golf the right way with Tiger Woods’ former coach, Hank Haney, who has been tutoring the Olympian in the latest season of his Golf Channel reality TV show, The Haney Project.

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Only 27-years-old, Haney says that Phelps has a lot of “potential,” especially taking into account that he’s 6’4 and has the wingspan of a pterodactyl (6’8) . However when it comes to relearning a new sport that requires you to stand in awkward position, “potential” doesn’t mean sh*t as seen in the video below of Phelps melting down after topping his tee shot.

Phelps’ journey to the the PGA Tour will be extremely long and difficult. More likely than not, he’ll find himself in the same boat as retired tennis player, Andy Roddick, who plays off a 6-handicap in the pro-am circuit. Regardless whether he makes it as a pro or sucks for the rest of his like, he’ll still get paid… at least in the interim…

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Though just a 26-handicapper, Phelps has already landed a club deal with PING, which just goes to show what a marketing powerhouse he is. (Sponsor me PING… I’m an awesome swimmer!!! ) Rumors are already circulating that the club maker intends to relaunch or even create a leisure brand line extension with Phelps as the main endorser.

Damn it must feel good to be a gangsta!!!

photos taken from CNN.com

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