After two-time National Basketball Association champion Stephen Curry received a sponsor's exemption to participate in the Web.com Tour's Ellie Mae Classic, some golf die-hards felt it was wrong to guarantee a spot in the field to a part-time golfer.
Whether you're betting on the tournament or not, tee times start Thursday morning at TPC Stonebrae in Hawyard, California.
Despite handwringing in some corners over Curry receiving an exemption over a more qualified professional - though it is common for sponsors to give exemptions to amateurs - the Warriors star more than held his own on the course and silenced many of his doubters. On the backside, Curry again carded a 37 - making two more birdies to go along with two bogeys and a costly double bogey on the par 4-fifth hole. Fellow American Brandon Harkins is two shots back after rounds of 64 and 65.
"To be honest, I think it's pretty special for a two-time MVP to be able to shoot 74 at a pro event and beat other pros", former PGA champion Jason Day said.
Steph Curry shoots 74-74 in Web Tour debut.
A bogey on the last was not the ideal way to end his day, but Curry was already looking ahead to Friday's second round. "It could have been all that 80s-90s talk I heard coming into the tournament". He scrambled for a bogey and a couple of pars later was laughing and joking with playing partners Stephen Jaeger and Sam Ryder. Shooting two 74s, I'll take that.
"Clearly, he is [a good golfer]", Zach Johnson said.
"I think he showed a lot of people that didn't know a lot about his golf game - I unfortunately know it all too well - that he's got the talent", he said. Someone said they shoot pretty low there often, but it doesn't matter. While Curry is not fooling anyone into thinking he can win this week, he is now sitting above eight golfers on the live leaderboard and is generating huge viewing interest in this event.