First of all, it’s because he won over 70 PGA Tour events, including 18 Majors, while married and raising kids with his wife Mrs. Nicklaus.
Think about that – by the time Nicklaus won his first major, he was already married and the Nicklauses had already had their first child, Jack Jr.
And then he won 17 more… Tiger Woods, in comparison, won 8 majors as a single man and 6 more while married, and only 2 of those following 6 majors came after his first child was born.
And it wasn’t because it was easier to win back then… it wasn’t…
Oh, did I mention Jack’s 19 runner-up finishes in the majors?
That’s 37 top-2 placings in majors over his career.
Jack was the greatest, and he did it in his spare time, between fishing trips and attending his kids’ high school sports.
Young Jack Nicklaus
That is the definition of “great.”
Now, lets get to the technical reason Jack Nicklaus is the best ever. He won the most majors, is 3rd in tournament wins, and had the best swing, all around, of any other major winner.
Byron Nelson and Ben Hogan may have been more accurate at their peak form, but no one blew away golf courses like Nicklaus did when he hit the scene.
When Jack said after Tiger’s first Masters win in ’97 that Tiger was playing a game with which he was unfamiliar, he was only repeating the exact same thing that Bobby Jones had said about him in the 60’s.
And get this address position of a young Nicklaus (the photo came with the lines, I didn’t draw them):
You could actually say that the MCS model has two components from the two best ever players of the post-war era – the address stance and leveraging action of young Jack Nicklaus, and the pivot action of Ben Hogan.
You can see the same address setup in the older Nicklaus as well:
Heck, you can look for sequences with Jack Nicklaus and see the same stance characteristics over and over:
Look at that picture above. It is the very essence of the MCS address setup and ball positions, shown face-on.
So, expect to hear a lot more about Jack Nicklaus, because just as the “floating pivot” in MCS is the same as used by Ben Hogan, the address stance of the MCS model most closely matches Jack Nicklaus’ except for the stance line, which follows Hogan’s.
Put those two swingers together, and you’ve got a swing model made for the ages…
Nicklaus, Hogan, Snead, Nelson – no modern player does what they did with a ball, showing how the modern swing is not superior to the classic one.
It isn’t, and every broken back and twisted knee from the modern players should tell you that.
And here’s the irony – no matter how good a player is, with the modern swing – he won’t last long enough to beat Jack’s record.
Tiger Woods came the closest, but he’s only gotten 3/4 of the way there, and he’s falling apart at the seams. No 15, let alone 18.
No one will play long enough and stay healthy long enough to beat Jack’s majors record – until the modern swing goes away.
Yes, I said it.