A guy who was named to the Hockey Hall of Fame and appointed head coach of the Washington Capitals on Tuesday has a background in golf, as well.
Adam Oates was on the bag for Brett Quigley during the 2010 RBC Canadian Open at St. George’s Golf and Country Club. I wrote the following story for Sun Media back then:
By Ian Hutchinson
In a game in which steely nerves and calm demeanors are positive traits, the coming together of two type A personalities may seem a little counterproductive and potentially explosive, but apparently there’s peace between Brett Quigley and his caddie.
With the RBC Canadian Open being played in Toronto, Quigley’s caddie may be better known than he is this one week of the year.
“We have similar personalities,” said five-time NHL all-star Adam Oates at St. George’s Golf and Country Club yesterday. “I like to say we’re East Coast guys. He’s from Providence, R.I., and I’m a Toronto boy. We’re both city boys – uptight, aggressive, in your face.”
“It works out well for both of us. We’re both a little more east coast-ish. He’s a big A personality.
To have 19 years in the NHL is pretty amazing,” said Quigley, who had a couple of top 10s in his previous three starts with Oates on the bag before arriving at St. George’s Golf and Country Club this week.
Oates, a long time friend of Mike Weir, first met Quigley when he was playing in Boston in the ‘90s and says Titleist tour rep Jim Curran was a catalyst to bring the two back together on tour this summer.
“Jim said, `You guys should get together. You guys are the same guy.’ He kind of re-introduced us,” said Oates, who scored 341 goals with Detroit, St. Louis, Boston, Washington, Philadelphia, Anaheim and Edmonton.
“(Quigley) asked me a year ago, would you like to work for me? Sure. I’m like every other jock. I love this game,” said Oates. “It’s fun to be in the hunt. It’s fun to be out there in the action. It’s very exciting. You feel for your man and it’s very enjoyable.”
As tempting as it may be to give in to his A personality, Oates realizes he has to resist his competitive side and respect Quigley’s knowledge when he’s working the bag.
“He’s 40 years old. He’s been on tour 14 years. If he was a younger guy, maybe,” said Oates, 47, who retired in 2004. “We just do the math together. He talks out his shots to me. I don’t contribute that much other than being supportive, but I’m there if he needs me for anything.
“These guys are the best at what they do and they see certain things. We all feel the wind and we all see the water, but they see it different than the amateurs, so you’re really there for support,” said Oates.
For his part, Quigley says Oates isn’t giving himself enough credit.
“We go through yardage and what we think (each shot) is playing and we try to pick a club. We both discuss it. For the most part, we’ve been on the same page, but we’ll talk through it and figure it out,” he said.
“He’s great. He’s very supportive as far as club and what we’re doing. We kind of talk through everything, so it’s been good and I actually played great this week. I just didn’t chip and putt very well,” said Quigley, who was even par over two rounds at St. George’s and just missed the cut.
Oates’ tenure as Quigley’s caddie will soon expire with hockey season approaching. He recently signed on as an assistant coach with the New Jersey Devils, so he’ll be back in more familiar surroundings.
“Obviously, the Devils have been a great franchise for the longest time – a lot of tradition there. Lou Lamoriello is one of the premier GMs in the league. Playing on other teams, you’re always wondering about the Devils organization and having an opportunity to be there, I’m very excited,” he said.