This year marks a major milestone for the Tour Championship: the 25th anniversary of Happy Gilmore’s storied victory.
That’s right, it has already been 25 years since one of the greatest performances of our generation, er — since the fictional character from Adam Sandler’s 1996 cult classic “Happy Gilmore” won the season-ending Tour Championship.
For those in need of a refresher, Gilmore overcame a 4-stroke deficit on the back nine to defeat his greatest rival, Shooter McGavin. The win cemented Gilmore’s meteoric rise from a failed hockey player with a powerful slapshot — something that translated surprisingly well into his unorthodox yet effective putting style — to a bona fide star.
It was a uniquely special moment for Gilmore, whose journey to the gold jacket was marred with controversy (he once engaged in a public fistfight with beloved TV presenter Bob Barker during a celebrity pro-am tournament), as he was playing in honor of his mentor — the late, great Chubbs Peterson.
On Wednesday, to recognize the 25-year milestone of Gilmore’s achievement, fellow Tour Championship winner Rory McIlroy presented a commemorative inscription at East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta.
“Gold Jacket. Green Jacket. Who gives a … “
— TOUR Championship (@playofffinale) September 1, 2021
McIlroy also delivered a heartfelt tribute to Gilmore (Sandler? Trying not to break character here). The enigmatic retired golfer was quick to reply with a warm message of his own.
Love you Rory. Thanks for the kind words. Look forward to playing with you all real soon. https://t.co/HhRLqvFfft
— Adam Sandler (@AdamSandler) September 1, 2021
Pro tip, Rory: Just say no to the ninth green at nine.