Equipment & Product Reviews

Rukket Sports - Golf Nets PDF Print E-mail


By Jason Bruno

If you're like me, practicing is a passion. The desire to stay competitive and continue improving

is never ending. Getting to the course or the range is often the biggest challenge for so many with

busy schedules...that's where Rukket Sports factors in. We first noticed the "Haack Net" (designed

by college coach Chris Haack) at the PGA Show in Orlando a few weeks back. Their golf nets are

really easy to construct, within minutes of unpacking the box, I was hitting golf shots.


One of the things rarely mentioned when considering purchasing a golf net for your personal

use is the amount of money saved on range balls (I only use premium urethane golf balls like

Pro V1's when I'm practicing at home) and the convenience of having it all outside your doorstep

. . . Rain or shine, indoor or out you can practice as much as you'd like. The Haack golf net is

constructed of five ply - 3/4 inch netting, steel and fiberglass frame. I especially liked the side

nets, keeps golf balls from rebounding away from the hitting area.




My personal set up at the compound sits beside my synthetic putting green. I use it to work

on fundamentals (I often use in junction with Zepp technology, that keeps track of swing plane,

swing speed, and tempo) and just the overall process without constantly getting hung up on

results. I prefer to start testing drivers here first to get a sense for how each feels before taking

to the course for further testing. The Rukket net is sturdier than the previous set up I had

installed previously, the only factor of concern is how well the frame will hold up to the South

Florida elements as compared to the PVC unit I used previously.


If you want to practice on your terms, Rukket Sports has a variety of golf nets and accessories

to help you set up your very own practice station.







Best Products - 62nd PGA Merchandise Show PDF Print E-mail

By Jason Bruno



What did we see at the 62nd PGA Merchandise Show that impressed us? Many things, really

too many to cover them all - but in this edition of our annual 'Best Of', the products we found

most suberb aren't all $400 drivers. In fact, some of the items we took notice of were the simplest

of accessories. The 2015 show was a solid outing for the golf apparel and footwear companies,

new innovations mixed in with some vintage throwback styles made for an eclectic display of golf



Of course, Hitting the ball longer and straighter is what gets the masses most excited about the

game. So lets begin with the big sticks that we believe will be most impactful this year.



The Nike Vapor line consist of 3 models, Speed/Pro/Flex (Pro model pictured above). Nike

improved on the Covert models of the past few years by making the flybeam cavity even stiffer,

this allows the front part of the club & face to flex more. Another upgrade for 2015 is the return

of the compression channel after a few years removed with the Covert line.

All three models are 460cc in size, but the profile of the Pro and Flex are more of the pear shaped

low spin variety. The Speed version is a larger rounder setup for players needing a higher launch.

The Flex model (pictured below) has a weight cartridge the golfer can insert according to their

desired launch angle by simply moving the weight to the front or back position of the port. There

were a handful of new drivers at the show that peaked our interest, none more than the Nike Vapor.


Vapor Flex





Has the industry leader improved on the highly acclaimed SLDR ... and are we still being told

to loft up? With two moveable weights (instead of one) and an even more forward CG, it's looks

like the answers are Yes and Yes. TaylorMade seems to be in a state of flux with lots of

restructuring in house, a big year for the R15 line would go a long way towards reversing the

momentum back in their favor.






Cobra's new Fly Z line has the tag line "Flip it n Rip it", incorporating multi-materials

and a new weight system that can be moved forward for penetrating flight with low

spin or back for max launch. Rickie and Jonas Blixt are already gaming the Fly Z+

(shown above). According to Cobra's Jose Miraflor: "Jonas will position the weight back

for max launch here in the states, when he travels to play in Europe where the ground is

much firmer, he'll move it forward to to get the roll out. Rickie plays his forward regardless

of the conditions, he prefers less spin." The standard Fly Z has only the rear weight cavity

for the player who wants more launch.






Mizuno, not known for their drivers, has introduced the JPX 850 with fast track

technology. The JPX 850 gives the player the ability to move weight to 5 separate

positions (3 center locations) including 2 separate ports on each side to create the

desired ball flight.




For Callaway loyalists, Big Bertha rolls along with its 815 Alpha model - once again

featuring Gravity Core technology. Their new XR model was created for max distance

(pictured below).





Fairway metals

Exotics has earned their reputation as an elite product in the world of fairway woods,

and the new E8 Tour is no exception. Perhaps the toughest clubs for good players to

find is a gamer 3 wood, this club takes no time to get used to. The E8 Tour was the only

club I hit on the range at the Media Day outing, within 3 swings I was already contemplating

the fate of my longtime gamer. Hit the E8 Tour and you'll understand the cult following that

Tour Edge/Exotics head honcho David Glod has created with his Exotics line.






Medicus introduced a new line of Kick X clubs, and the Blast fairway woods really got

our attention. The 15 gram functional rear rail is reversible, it can be put into the

head upside down for a more traditional seamless look. Along with the front rails,

this stick will handle even the toughest lies. The cavity compression chamber is something

we've never quite seen in a fairway metal before - Medicus engineer Mark Adams says:

"The whole head compresses, not only the face. At impact it stores the energy and creates

a greater C.O.R and an enhanced & larger sweetspot." Graffalloy shaft is stock equipment

in the Kick X line.








Mizuno's MP-15 is

the flagship of their

new iron line.

A 10 gram titanium insert in the muscle on the back of the iron replaces 38 grams of steel to increase the M.O.I of the club and make it 10% more forgiving than the MP-64.





TaylorMade's Rsi iron line is based on the innovation of slots built into the heel and toe of the face

of each iron (tests have shown this technology nearly eliminates the yardage loss on heel or toe

mishits). The "si" in the name stands for Slotted Iron. Rsi1  is the most forgiving model designed

for the mid/high handicapper. Rsi2 is a compact cavity back that fits the largest range of players.

The TP model is a gorgeous forging with minimal offset in a very traditional look. TMAG staffers

will game this iron on tour in 2015.







The new Nike Vapor irons feature weight moved toward the toe of each iron, which moves the CG

away from the heel and into the center for more solid and efficient strikes. Vapor is available in

three seperate models. Speed, Pro Combo & Pro.






The new Bridgestone J15DF forged irons are a two piece forging. The hidden cavity allows for what

Bridgestone calls flex action speed technology. In other words, the face flexes more for increased

distance. This iron is our sleeper of 2015.








The new Rife Switchback is a head turner. The interchangeable weights allow you options

to fine tune your feel on the greens. Their booth was stocked with great new innovations.





DGv3.3 model

DG-v2.3 model DG-v1.3

Tour Exotics is best known for their

tour quality fairway woods, but of

all the new premium milled putters

that made its debut in Orlando,

nothing looked sweeter than David

Glod's new DG-v1.3 , 2.3 & 3.3.










Nike's New Method

Matter putters feature

the same RZN

compound found in their

tour golf balls. The

material is not only in

the face insert but also

is used in the seams for

enhanced feel.

The counterflex model

features an extended

belly putter length grip

that allows the counter

weight to be adjusted

above, below or even

with the hands.


Studies showed that

golfers actually perform

better with the weight

below the hands...who









Adidas launched it's new Boost golf shoe on Wednesday morning just before the opening

of the show. According to Adidas: Thousands of their foam capsules fused together form

an energy return back to the athlete, thus providing unparalleled cushioning and

responsiveness to your feet - BOOST. I can vouch for these, I've worn my spikeless version

(shown) every active minute since the launch.






Puma Shoe guru Grant Knudson has tabbed the new Titan Tour shoe "The greatest golf

shoe we've ever created." That's a big statement coming from a guy known to be an elite

talent in the field. Titan Tour features Outlast temperature regulation technology for the ultimate

in temperature and moisture wicking control.






Nike's new Lunar Control 3 features a lower profile and a redesigned sole for more

traction. This is the shoe you will see world #1 Rory McIlroy wearing in 2015. Nike shoe

designer "Dice" Furuya showed me the sole changes vs last years model - as per Rory's

request for more traction and stability (below).


As Rory requested,

the new Lunar

control sole (left) to

be equipped with

torsional stability &

enhanced traction

(If you look closely

you can see

additional molded

spikes on the floor

of the new sole for

to resist slippage &

an extra removable

Champ Spike on the

inner front foot).




Ashworth's new Cardiff spikeless shoe is timeless and can be worn on or off the course

for any casual event. Worn on tour by Justin Rose







The Bobby Jones Collection set the bar high for everyone else on the apparel side of the show floor,

the fall line pictured here.





Waterproof outerwear with style, Bobby Jones has you even looking good in the elements






Greg Norman's line is bold, featuring primary colors, so you can attack life like the Shark himself.




Norman's ladies line is extensive and classy.






Major League Baseball great

Russ Ortiz wanted to

combine his love of golf

with giving back. 2nd Guy

Golf donates the prceeds of

all mens apparel sales to

the Feed My Starving

Children Charity.


What's better than looking

great and helping to feed

others all at the same time?


(style shown): Trinity





The new Alister Mackenzie brand looked really sharp . . . how is it that nobody owned

the rights to that name previously? Right time, right place I guess. The Mackenzie

brand will focus on having their line in high end pro shops around the world.




Maide Golf by Bonobos

makes a big move into

the performance side of

apparel with their

Flatiron polo.


Already the makers of

the world class Highland

golf pants and shorts,

designer Ian Velardi

created the Flatiron polo

with the perfect

combination of style and

performance in

mind. The innovation

includes the use of flat

lock seams to maximize

freedom of movement

and comfort, thus

enhancing the

experience on the links.






Nike's Jetsream half zip jacket is just one of the new garments from the swoosh that had

us wanting. It can't be stated enough how magnificent Nike's entire productline was at this

year's show, across the board they were our clear winner.








The folks at Zero Friction have come up with a glove that doesn't need sizing, their

compression glove fits every hand snug and you can get it in virtually any color.






Gamer Grip is the perfect accessory for those who live in humid conditions or have

to constantly dry their hands because of excessive perspiration. just a small pea sized

amount will keep your hands dry for up to 4 hours. We've already field tested Gamer

Grip, it works brilliantly.





Golf Pride found out that most of the standard grips they were sending out to the tour

players were being built up with tape in the bottom hand in an effort to eliminate

the tendency of hooking the golf ball. Hence the origin of their new Plus 4 grip, less taper

and a new softer compound for those who like to hit tons of balls on the range. By far our

choice for best new grip at the show.






Green Sleeve founder Oliver Nimenko from the UK, finally decided to check out the

game of Golf well into his 60's. Once hooked, his PGA Professional impressed upon

him to keep his golf ball clean. Tired of constantly walking around with a towel, he

came up with this ingenious portable sized ball cleaner that you can keep in your pocket

while playing. The sock like outer houses a coarse microfiber on the inside that removes

debris and soil from your ball once it is pushed through the Green Sleeve.





The GolfBuddy LR5 is equipped with three operational modes.

'Scan' provides a continuous 10-second display of all objects located, 'Flag' hones in on the
pin and factors out background objects to give precise readings, and 'Normal' provides a
single distance to any chosen target from flag to dogleg point or hazard edge. The LR5 is
more compact than most leading laser rangefinders and is a great value at $249






Eyeline's putting laser will show you not only your stroke path, but the laser can be extended

out to show where your clubface is aimed. The red putting sword acts a highlighter when used

outdoors in bright sunlight.






Kentwool socks.

Simply the best socks

in the game. Worn by

dozens of tour pros

(Augusta sock shown

right). Bubba Watson

made it a point to

visit the booth on



If you walk the

course or just need

the ultimate in foot

support, these are a









Full Swing Golf Simulators give you as close an experience to the real thing as you can get.

You can play a round with your golf buddies or practice with virtually every type of swing

analyzing technology. Having used the simulator at the Isleworth clubhouse for many years,

Tiger Woods decided on Full Swing for his own needs and at the clubhouses of courses he's

presently involved in designing. (Recently Full Swing signed Tiger Woods to endorse the product).





Is a range or practice area not within close proximity? Do want to work on your game

without ponying up your whole budget on range balls? For many the answers are Yes & Yes,

if you're one of those who answered affirmative to either, Rukket Sports has you covered.

They're products impressed us so much, that a new Chris Haack Model (pictured right) has

been ordered for the LinksNation compound.






Golf Balls




The Kick X Tour-Z golf ball from Medicus is a new 3 piece premium ball that features a

metal fusion core as well as a polymer middle layer for max power. The 318 dimple

urethane cover provides the feel and stopping power. We found the 3 line graphic marking

very easy to line up putts with.





Srixon's new Z-Star and Z-

StarXV have an improved

Spin Skin for incredible spin

and feel around the greens.

The XV has a slightly firmer

feel for players with higher

swing speeds. In my first

test round with the XV I

liked everything about it's

performance, including its






The 2015 edition of the golf ball industry leader - Pro V1 & Pro V1x got a small upgrade

for this year. The urethane elastomer cover formulation has been changed to a softer

compound for increased greenside feel & spin...all with the same distance you'd expect

from the standard in the premium golf ball market.



Another PGA Show in the books, check back for future reviews and features on these products

throughout 2015.













Gary Player - A Game For Life PDF Print E-mail

By Jason Bruno


In this three DVD set Peter Kessler narrates as 9 time major champion Gary

Player gives 60 years worth of wisdom on how to score, improve your game and

live a healthy life. The boxed set comes nicely packaged in full Black Knight theme.





In volume one - Gary Player gives the do's and don'ts of Sand Play - including

11 different bunker situations to master. Player hits bunker shots with different clubs

to demonstrate various options and feel. This disc gives you the invaluable knowledge

to glean some of Player's legendary skills to improve your up and down results from

any bunker predicament .





In volume two - Scoring, Player discusses and displays the various shots to use

around the greens and the clubs used for these shots. In the Putting portion of

this disc, GP covers all factors that contribute to getting the most out of your flatstick.





In Volume Three, Player goes through his extensive workout, his diet and discusses

what it takes to stay healthy and athletic for a lifetime. The interview portion of disc

three is a candid sit down with Peter Kessler that looks back on Player's youth and

his many decades as an international golf champion.



Gary Player's career accomplishments:

  • 1 of 5 Pro Grand Slam Champions: Player, Nicklaus, Sarazen, Woods, & Hogan
  • 9 major championships.
  • The ONLY golfer to have won the “regular” Grand Slam AND the senior Grand Slam.
  • 165 professional wins.
  • Victories in 28 consecutive years.
  • Winner of the South African Open a record 13 times.
  • Winner of the Australian Open a record 7 times.
  • Winner of the World Match Play Championship a record 5 times.
  • Winner of the World Series of Golf 3 times.
  • One of only 3 golfers to win the British Open Championship in three different decades.
  • Oldest player to make the cut at The Open Championship (age 59 in 1995).
  • Oldest player to make the cut at The Masters (age 62 in 1998).
  • Holds the records for most consecutive cuts made at the Masters with 23.
  • Named by Golf Digest and Golf Magazine to their Top 10 All-Time “Greatest Golfers Ever.”


Volume One - Sand Play, is the star of this set and is worth the cost of the set on its own.

Volume Two - Scoring, gives a few gems and anecdotes to help lower your scores from around

the green. Volume Three has some awkward moments, especially in the gym scene as Kessler

is a bystander watching Player workout, then later on as Player dances in his kitchen as Kessler

sings an Elvis tune ("Teddy Bear"). Besides those two cringing moments, "A Game for Life" is

a worthy purchase, especially if you want to improve your shortgame.



For more info or to order:








Devereux Golf Apparel - Proper Threads PDF Print E-mail


By Jason Bruno


Devereux. If you haven't heard the name before, you will. Devereux Apparel was

founded by brothers Robert and Will Brunner when they failed to find a premium mens

golf brand that inspired their classic tastes. They went back in time and brought out

the simpler elegance that once ruled the fairways.


Jahan in White/Evergreen/Navy




When a company has the tagline "Proper Threads", there is great interest on my part to

check out the product . . . and who doesn't like to have new premium golf attire? A couple

of things in regard to golf apparel - one can never have too many nice golf shirts, and the

more varied the better. I noticed immediately that Devereux's new offerings weren't your

run of mill industry default golf shirt. The Pima cotton material is a nice changeup (especially

during the cooler months in South Florida), and the quality of the garment is truly superb.

Recently we tested the Jahan and Charles polos during a golf outing in North Orlando.

The style is simple & classic, and the cut of the garment tapers the appearance from the shoulders

down to the waist (we can all use that). The feel of Pima is silky soft, and from a performance

standpoint, the material has the right amount of give when you unleash your most powerful

swings with the driver.




Rear collar logo is a nice touch





Recently we engaged in a Q & A with Devereux's Robert Brunner:

LinksNation: The 2014 line looks great. You are based in Los Angeles and yet the

threads look as much South Hampton and Palm Beach as they do Southern

Cal. Where did the inspiration for the styles come from?

Brunner: At Devereux we look to create a product that vibes well no matter the city you are in.

We are truly inspired by travel, art, cuisine, fashion etc. The “Proper Collection” for Fall 2014

was inspired by Miami in the 1950’s and 60’s.  This unique collection was inspired by the city,

the colors and the gentlemen that reigned in that era.

There is a touch of classic and casual in many of the pieces, for

example the "Joseph" has a Palmer like style while the "Arthur" will

remind many of Ben Hogan's classic sweaters. Was there a conscious

effort to capture the look of these two iconic Golfers?

Yes!  When we design our collections we like to look to the past.  Hogan, Palmer, Player,

Nicklaus etc. all had a phenomenal sense of style on the course and we strive to re-create that

proper look.  The Golden Era of golf is and inspiration in itself.


Devereux's Arthur sweater




The colors and prints are somewhat modest and subdued (Navy,

evergreen, grey, claret), what were your thoughts on the color

selection for the 2014 line?

The color selection comes from our inspiration of Miami in the 1950’s and 60’s.  We used

the color evergreen to resemble the playful mood of the people and also capture the colors

of the city. A deep claret was used to capture the mischievous mood of the Miami nights.

Our fashion colors are bridged together by our neutral color palette that consist of navy,

white and steel.

Pima cotton as the primary thread choice as opposed to the modern day

polyesters used by most golf apparel companies today. Can you

elaborate on why Pima was the preferred choice?

Cotton is having a big resurgence in the marketplace.  We chose to use Pima cotton because

we believe in the best quality in our fabrication and you can not achieve that with 100% polyester.

Cotton is a better fiber to wear day in and day out; it looks nicer when you are on the course or

off the course.


As a newer brand in the marketplace, is there a specific customer

demographic that Devereux is targeting?

We like to target anyone who plays the sport and cares to dress well.  We focus our attention

on the course and want the golfer that desires “Proper Threads”.




The Brunner incorporates an asymetrical chest pocket and button down collar






Charles in Navy/Evergreen




One of the great things about the Devereux style is that it truly is geared towards Golf

AND Lifestyle. You could wear your "Proper Threads" anywhere without looking like

some kind of pretentious super hero in a "Tour Pro" (bright shirt, big belt buckle) outfit.

Imagine that, classic golf clothing suitable not only for your best round on the links, but

for the office, at dinner or anywhere else . . . proper indeed.


For more information visit:












New Technology from SkyCaddie & BOOM PDF Print E-mail



SkyCaddie's latest GPS watch - LINX, takes GPS wrist wear to the next level. LINX provides

the usual front/middle/back distances to each green, but also will serve up layup targets on

those challenging par 4's and long par 5's. There is a membership fee to upgrade to their new

feature called IntelliGreen, which provides green maps and distance information to specific

points on the green, and up to 40 specific targets per hole. LINX features Bluetooth technology

with their new complimentary SkyGolf360 mobile app available for Iphone and Andriod.



Although our test unit came in stock black, white is also available. For fashion conscious

linksters, interchangeable colored bands and bezels are also available. I'm still holding

out for a slimmer GPS watch - the LINX like most GPS watches is about 1/2" thick, which

for many like myself is too cumbersome . Performance wise, the SkyCaddie LINX delivered

with vitually identical measurements as my trusty everyday Bushnell laser. The battery life

however, was slightly disappointing - just over 5 hrs in golf mode. If your planning on going

36 at Bandon or Streamsong, a recharge at lunch will be needed.






Although LINX is a golf specific GPS, it has some fitness features that I like: the built in odometer

tracks location, distance, time, laps, speed, pace and calories burned during your walk, run or

bike ride. The downside: in order to upload all of the fitness data, you must purchase the optional

SkyGolf membership (plans vary from $20 - $50 per year).


Overall, LINX is an upgrade over the original WATCH model, with color choices, Bluetooth app and

fitness features, SkyGolf's LINX is worth checking out. LINX retails for $249



  • No annual fees required for basic features*
  • Preloaded with over 35,000 maps, ready-to-play, WORLDWIDE*
  • Dynamic accurate distances to front, center and back of green*
  • TrueGround® layup targets, from tee to green
  • Displayed in large easy-to-read numbers
  • Bluetooth-enabled with NEW complimentary SkyGolf 360 app:
    • Digital Scorecard syncs to SkyGolf 360 app for further stat analysis**
    • Manage your SkyGolf Account through your smartphone
    • Receive Smart Notifications such as calls, email & text alerts ( IOS smartphones only)
  • Intelligent Automation features, such as auto-course recognition and auto-hole advance
  • Fitness stopwatch and odometer features***
  • Track your distance and calories burned
  • Time your rounds with pace-of-play timer
  • Fully upgradeable to access IntelliGreen™ and up to 40 targets per hole (sold separately)


For more info:







BOOM - Swimmer




BOOM is a company that grew out of the SoCal Lifestyle of X-Gamers, musicians and creative

artists. Certainly this little gadget can't be mistaken for a golf accessory, infact I know what

your thinking, it looks like a . . . well you know. Clever - to make a diminutive little speaker

with a wavy tail called "Swimmer".


The Swimmer is an on the go waterproof sound that can attach to most anything. Overall,

the speaker sound is impressive considering it's emanating from such a small object.

The mids are most impressive, the highs are pretty high, and depending on the genre

of music - the lows are clean at low to moderate volumes, but certainly not what you'd

get from a larger full size speaker, especially if your taste is bass thumping jams.


The rechargable lithium battery in our unit lasts for around 12 hours, chargeable via the

micro USB plug in (included). The durable cover resists shock and dust, so no need to

treat this speaker as some fragile instrument.




The flexible tail attaches to nearly everything, and for the objects it can't quite cling to,

there is a suction cup attachment, this is especially useful for windows and showers.

I personally enjoy listening to music with it on the range while practicing, and just recently

I used the BOOM speaker to playback dialog from the Tiger Woods World Challenge media

day event from a few weeks ago, Sir Eldrick and fellow Media came through with great

clarity . . . knew I could work in an example of some sort of Golf application.



So many uses in so many places. Swimmer by BOOM.




Boom Swimmer retails for $59 - more info:








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