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Morning Briefing: It has been a rocky road for Mediate

Morning Briefing: It has been a rocky road for Mediate
Rocco Mediate jokes with Tiger Woods after losing to him at the 2008 U.S. Open. (Chris Carlson / AP)

Most of us remember Rocco Mediate as the golfer who put up a valiant struggle against Tiger Woods before losing to him in an 18-hole playoff at the 2008 U.S. Open.

Mediate looks back at those days and sees a golfer in trouble.

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Mediate told the Golf Channel on Wednesday that he was a "habitual alcoholic'' who would also drink while playing.

"Absolutely I have played while drinking," Mediate said. "Because it was just normal for me. It was just a daily ritual, let's say. You can put it in a lot of places. A lot of places. Was it every time? No. But most of the time when the pain came in, it wasn't not going to happen."

Mediate suffered from a back injury for many years.

Mediate, 56, also said his struggles with alcohol made him empathize with Woods when he was cited for DUI (for prescription medications) in 2017. Woods was taking the medication after having spinal fusion surgery.

"When that happened, I went, 'Mm-hmm, yeah. I just didn't get caught,' " Mediate said. "But when it comes to that type of pain, you'll basically do whatever it takes to be able to go, ‘Oh, that feels better.’ "

Mediate, who now plays on the Champions Tour, said he has been sober since Oct. 2017.

Whoops!

Former Manchester United coach Jose Mourinho, who is one of the most successful soccer coaches of all time, may want to scurry back to a grass field after he checked out the ice in Russia earlier this week.

Mourinho made the honorary first puck drop at the Kontinental Hockey League game between Avangard Omsk and SKA St. Petersburg. He dropped the puck OK, but as he turned to walk away, the carpet that was rolled out on the rink slipped from under him and he fell backward onto the ice. SKA player Pavel Datsyuk helped him up and off the ice.

Sad news

Former MMA middleweight champion Wanderlei Silva said in an interview with Brazilian website PVT that he has experienced many CTE-like symptoms.

"I was in a lecture about concussions and of the 10 symptoms the guy mentioned, I had eight," Silva, 42, said. "The symptoms would be, for example, mood swings, getting angry very fast, forgetting some things, having difficulty sleeping."

Silva also said he plans to donate his brain for research on CTE — chronic traumatic encephalopathy — after he dies and warns new fighters to be careful how they train.

"I thought a lot about it and even tried to contact people to make this donation," Silva said. "I have the most interest in donating, since I won't be using it anyway. And if I could leave a tip for the young guys, it would be don't hit yourselves every day. If you have a young student, don't let him take too many punches to the head. There's the right moment to do a hard training, but it can't be every day. A good coach takes care of your student."

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Best sports movies

As we continue our run-up to the Oscars by having Times readers pick the best sports movie of all time, we move on to baseball. We have received just over 7,000 ballots so far, and “The Bad News Bears,” “Moneyball,” “The Sandlot,” and “The Pride of the Yankees” are all within a dozen or so votes of one another for the final spots on the final ballot. So make your voice heard! You can vote by typing in or clicking on this URL: https://poll.fm/10229995 or emailing me at houston.mitchell@latimes.com. This time, we will have you pick your top seven baseball movies of all time.

So far, football and basketball movies that have made the final round of voting are:

Basketball: “Hoosiers,” “White Men Can’t Jump,” Hoop Dreams,” “Blue Chips” and “He Got Game.”

Football: “Brian’s Song,” “Remember the Titans,” The Longest Yard” (1974), “Rudy” and “Jerry Maguire.”

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