Golf's 8 Quirkiest Major Winners of All-Time

Mike DudurichContributor IAugust 23, 2012

Golf's 8 Quirkiest Major Winners of All-Time

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    A major winner is a major winner.

    Regardless of the circumstances, unexpected happenings or unusual breaks, a major championship is a major championship.

    We sometimes forget about of the quirkiness of some of golf's great champions.

    The following is a short compilation of some of the greats and some of their quirky ways.

"The Merry Mex," Lee Trevino, Stood for What He Believed

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    Lee Trevino was one of golf's great champions, winning six major titles: two U.S. Opens, two Open Championships and two PGA Championships.

    You may notice there is one major championship missing: the Masters.

    Trevino figured out quickly that Augusta National Golf Club did not suit his highly-educated fade. The course was famous for its right-to-left doglegs, and Trevino had very limited success there. His best finish was a tie for 12th.

    "The Merry Mex" also had a real problem with Augusta National's policies and its wealth. He never changed his shoes in the locker room, opting to do so in the parking lot.

    It took some heart-to-heart talks with Jack Nicklaus after Trevino boycotted the Masters three times to get him to come back.

Bubba Watson's Always Throwing a Curveball

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    Bubba Watson is spelled Q-U-I-R-K-Y.

    From his pink driver that regularly launches golf balls over 300 yards to his strident refusal to hit a ball straight, Watson is out there.

    He was at his most "out there" when he won the Masters back in April, carving a shot from the trees that turned 40 yards and crawled up onto the green in a playoff. He hasn't been much of a factor since then, however.

    He's a guy who spent $110,000 to buy a car that greatly resembled the General Lee, the famous orange car that was featured on the television show The Dukes of Hazzard.

Don't Mess with Success. That's Been Jim Furyk's Motto

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    Jim Furyk's has heard it all before: "He could make that swing in a phone booth." Or, "he has more moves than Mae West."

    Furyk's self-taught swing, with some help along the way from his father, Mike, is indeed different.

    Over the top, looping, dropping it back on line and producing some of the most accurate ball-striking in the history of the game.

    He won the 2003 U.S. Open at Olympia Fields outside of Chicago but has had chances to win the 2007 Open at Oakmont and the 2011 Open at Olympic.

    Certainly not a swing you would teach, but one that definitely works for him.

Arnold Palmer Brought Golf to the World of Television

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    Arnold Palmer's legacy will include his bringing professional golf to the masses through the medium of television.

    That happened because he was a young man; athletic,charismatic and able to hit the ball a long way in his prime.

    But there was more. Palmer had a go-for-broke attitude, a gambler's brazen outlook that fans loved.

    There was the hitching up of his pants before he stepped up to address the ball. There was that whirly-bird swing that was hardly textbook.

    Textbook or not, Palmer won seven majors, the sixth-highest total in history.

Hubert Green Had Unusual Ways but Won Two Majors

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    Hubert Green won 23 times on the PGA and Champions Tour and also won a U.S. Open and PGA Championship.

    You may have watched him or have seen clips of him using what was the shortest putter in the game at the time. He had to bend over a great deal to get down to the ball, but was comfortable with it.

    He also had what may have been the shortest and quickest backswing in the game, but was one of the straightest hitters of his time.

    He started to battle oral cancer in 2003 and continues that battle.

Keegan Bradley's Maddening Pre-Putt Routine Definitely Makes Him Quirky

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    Keegan Bradley was spectacular in winning the PGA Championship last year, but there are those who would say his pre-putt routine is something less than that.

    He walks around his putt, sometimes multiple times. He then addresses the ball, backs away a couple times, gets behind the ball again, takes a step forward, then at least one backward and repeats that until he is comfortable with the putt and his chances.

There Haven't Been Many Like John Daly

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    John Daly is a two-time major champion, but bring up his name and people most likely will remember him more for his off-course antics: divorces, gambling debts, torn-up hotel rooms, etc.

    He has become the prototypical guy for a backswing that goes far too far, and for many years that backswing made him the longest player on the PGA Tour.

    Daly smokes constantly and always has a Diet Coke in his hand.

    And Daly has a bit of a stubborn streak on the golf course. He's had a couple instances where he repeatedly tries to cross lakes or hazards and either finally does so or runs out of golf balls. Remember the 16 he had at the Arnold Palmer Invitational?

Sometimes Phil Mickelson Might Be Too Smart for His Own Good

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    Sometimes Phil Mickelson's very active imagination exceeds his vast array of talent.

    He's been compared with Arnold Palmer in the way he attacks golf courses with little regard for the penalties he might have to play.

    But he does things his way. Like showing up at the Masters one year with two drivers...and playing with the same round.

    Like taking long-to-mid irons out of his bag in order to have four wedges available.

    And, of course, surrounding himself with a busload of coaches, therapists, advisers and hand-holders as he continues his futile chase of Tiger Woods.