Jack Nicklaus’ perfect response to Lee Trevino’s wedge dig

Has there ever been a quicker wit on the PGA Tour than Lee Trevino? The title might be up for debate after a story Trevino shared on this week’s episode of GOLF’s Subpar.

The six-time major winner is one of pro golf’s legends, and at 84 years old, Trevino is as entertaining as he’s ever been. This week, Trevino shared a number of priceless stories from his life and career with Subpar hosts Colt Knost and Drew Stoltz, including one about a dig he gave the game’s GOAT, Jack Nicklaus — and Nicklaus’ masterful response.

The story began with some back-and-forth about weaknesses.

“Golfers have weaknesses,” Trevino said. “You always have a weakness. It’s either a bunker shot, or to draw a driver or to cut a wedge. There’s weaknesses. The only guy that I’ve ever seen that didn’t have a weakness: Jack couldn’t play wedges. He was a bad wedge player.

Pro golfer Lee Trevino points his finger on the 14th hole during the first round of the PNC Championship at the Ritz Carlton Golf Club Grande Lakes on December 18, 2021
‘It’s crazy!’: Lee Trevino bashes latest golf rules controversy
By: Jessica Marksbury

“And I asked Jack one time, I said, let me ask you a question. I said, why, the way you drive it, you’re the greatest putter I’ve ever seen. I know Bobby Locke was good … but Jack is the greatest. Still can putt the same way, the method that he has is flawless. Nobody’s ever copied it and it’s flawless the way he does it. And I asked him, I said, why are you such a bad wedge player?

“And he said, ‘Well, I’ve never had to hit one.'”

A mic drop if there ever was one. As the group laughed, Trevino said Nicklaus actually had a point, because in those days, par-4s didn’t really exceed 400 yards, and Nicklaus could hit the driver 300.

“Jack was a fader,” Trevino said. “Everybody thinks he drew the ball, he never did that. He faded everything, you know, just a small fade, hit it higher than I did. But he moved it from left to right. But he couldn’t play a wedge, he couldn’t play a wedge. It was very difficult for him.”

For more from Trevino, including his thoughts on the latest hot topics in the game, check out the full episode below.

Golf.com Editor

As a four-year member of Columbia’s inaugural class of female varsity golfers, Jessica can out-birdie everyone on the masthead. She can out-hustle them in the office, too, where she’s primarily responsible for producing both print and online features, and overseeing major special projects, such as GOLF’s inaugural Style Is­sue, which debuted in February 2018. Her origi­nal interview series, “A Round With,” debuted in November of 2015, and appeared in both in the magazine and in video form on GOLF.com.