NORTON, Mass. -- Maybe it was the disappointing round he'd just completed, bad timing with the questioning, or the implication that his position is tenuous as it relates to a certain global competition later this fall.
When Bill Haas was asked about his presumably delicate Presidents Cup predicament after the final round at the Deutsche Bank Championship on Monday, the typically low-key veteran wasn't exactly in an agreeable mood.
With the points about to be readjusted after play at TPC Boston finished, Haas ranked 10th in points on the U.S. list, the last spot where he is assured of cementing a position on the 12-man team. Players just behind him on the list were in the mix for a victory, including Jim Furyk, Brandt Snedeker and Rickie Fowler.
Haas had just signed for a 2-over 73 when he was asked whether making the team as a captain's pick might be dicey, given that his father, Jay Haas, is the assistant captain of the U.S. team. Captain Fred Couples already was excoriated in some circles for using one of his two at-large picks on Tiger Woods, who hasn’t won in two years and was considered a huge reach in the eyes of many.
"I would think it would make it easier for them to pick me because I think my dad wants me to be on the team," Haas said, who grumbled at the logic of the question.
Where to begin? Pretty clearly, picking Haas, if it comes to that, would leave the door open for charges of nepotism. Haas was offended by the suggestion that it would be secoind-guessed, because it implied that he doesn’t warrant being considered.
"They're ignorant," he said. "Then they haven’t been paying attention. To hell with them ... It would be a fair pick if they picked me."
Terse tone aside, that's all true. He had two victories in 2010 and has lost in two playoffs this year, the two-year period in which the points list is derived. But it's a bit more complicated than that, isn’t it?
Apparently, the delicacy of his situation hasn’t been broached in the House of Haas. Maybe it should be.
With Couples having already burned a controversial selection on Woods, those who are outside the U.S. automatic top 10 as the final round in Boston was concluding included two-time 2011 winner Keegan Bradley, Furyk, who is the reigning PGA Tour Player of the Year, former Ryder Cupper Fowler and Gary Woodland, who won earlier this year and is a power player in the Couples mold. Bradley is the lone American to have won a major this year.
As his post-round mood gradually brightened, Haas specifically mentioned several of those players as being equally deserving, then came full circle to the original notion that was posed -- finishing in the top 10 in points would make it a lot less complicated. Haas is assured a spot in the third FedEx event in two weeks in Chicago.
"You know, if I play well next week, it takes care of everything," he said.
Chicago marks the final week that players on either the U.S. or International squads can move into, or out of, the automatic top 10.