Nike Golf will launch it’s new Nike Method Origin putter ($349.99) on April 22 at nike.com and selected retailers. Nike Golf thought about how can they achieve that the putter becomes an extension of a golfer, in such way that he will be able to focus more on the hole in front of him rather than on the putter itself. I know this sounds very marketing, but this is what I heard from Nike Golf.
The performance of a putter is not solely about the club head, but also about the shaft and the grip. As you will see below in the description of the new Nike Method Origin putter there is no mention neither of shaft nor grip or placement of weights and the Center of Gravity.
Nike Golf employed in the new putter, a unique construction comprising 3 pieces: the face, a secondary mass on the back and the RZN layer compressed in-between. Together, these pieces form the Nike Method Origin putter.
David Franklin, Nike Golf Master Modelmaker explains “The response is incremental across the face. A hit on the center of the face elicits a dampening effect. The more off-center the hit, the more the RZN compresses and the more energy is returned to the ball. The response is similar to our Compression Channel and improves consistency across the face.”
They completely reengineered the polymetallic groove technology (in 2010 the essence of this technology was that it acts like a hybrid between an insert, a sound slot, and a deep-groove milling pattern) to offer full-length grooves that are linear from heel to toe. This orientation is designed to provide a more consistent, efficient and faster forward roll. This sounds more promising than Odyssey Golf‘s Metal-X roll pattern (Odyssey Works putter line).
The newly designed face features twice the number of polymetallic grooves of previous Method putters. More grooves mean increased coefficient of friction and traction on the golf ball, creating an earlier forward roll and a smoother, softer feel at impact.
The bottom line
The Nike Method Origin putter will not be a real extension of a golfer. The new groove technology solution is promising. If Nike Golf would like to achieve its goal then they should handle the product development in its complexity that includes selecting the right shaft and grip.
One more thing that I think it is important (and it is missing also from Nike Golf press release) in every golf club is the placement of the weights and the Center of Gravity alignment within the club. Will they put the weight towards the face? Where will be the Center of Gravity?