Tag Archives: PGA Championship

Wanamaker Yours?

Contrary to popular belief, Stevie Williams cannot win the Wanamaker Trophy this weekend. Yes, Adam Scott his player could, and if he does will his caddie be over shadowing the biggest win of his career? Maybe, but that’s up to the media to decide. Some say he’s the most famous caddie out there, but I’d counter that argument saying Danny Noonan is much more of a household name than Williams. It’s been an interesting week for Stevie and Adam regardless. Fortunately all of golf slowly turns thier attention to the PGA Championship at Atlanta Athletic Club. I’ve been trying to focus on the tournament more than the catty fight. One main reason for caring about this week more than others is I’m back to playing fantasy golf. Yes, thanks to Barstool sports, and the Sportschump, I’ve been playing the daily fantasy sports league that is, Draftstreet. This is their inaugural week for PGA fantasy golf on their site. I must say I’m excited about this, maybe a little too much, because I’ve been out of the fantasy golf game for a couple of years. Anyways, here’s a few thoughts I had on some of the players in the mix this weekend and why I will or won’t be picking them.

The Irish major winners. Rory McIlroy looked pretty good last week. I’ve been somewhat puzzled by how few tournaments he’s been playing in, and feel like it’s a bad thing he hasn’t consistently been in competition. For some reason I’m not buying him winning his second major or really coming all that close at a course that isn’t favorable to the over the pond playing style. Darren Clarke is probably still drinking out of the Claret Jug, which makes me weary of picking him as well. That being said, some of my personal best rounds came under the influence!

The old farts. David Toms won this tournament the last time it was at the Atlanta Athletic Club, so why not again? Sure the course was about 270 yards shorter and the holes have changed A LOT, but he did set a course record for fewest strokes in a major that still stands today (265). Maybe that magic will all come back to him this weekend. Phil Mickelson might be in the hunt, but we all know he’ll take too many risks on a course where it’s necessary to stay in the fairway. Then there’s the 47 year old Davis Love III. His season hasn’t been exactly exciting so far, but he seems to step it up in the majors. DL3 finished 12th at the Players, 11th at the US Open, and 9th in the Brittish Open. He’s still got the tools to get it done, and get you some nice fantasy points for relatively cheap. Lee Westwood is the young gun of the old farts group at 38. From what I’ve read it sounds like he’s in a good state of mind. We all know he has the tools to win this major, but will that ever happen? The Magic 8 ball told me no, so I’m rolling with that scientific strategy.

The young guns. Dustin Johnson is no doubt my favorite current golfer at the moment. Aside from his run at the Brittish Open he hasn’t had nearly as good a year as he had last year in the majors, but that doesn’t mean he can’t come crazy this week and pull out a victory or come close. Jason Day is my favorite to win this event. He’s performed the best at majors out of any player on the tour (finishing 2nd at the US Open and Masters). An added bonus to him being in contention is getting to see his wife as the TV cameras can’t seem to help themselves, not that I’m complaining. Rickie Fowler is one of the American favorites, wearing 80’s neon colors everytime out. He’s done well in his last two tourney’s, so maybe he can parlay that success into another strong performance.

The Stevie Williams pair. Tiger Woods pretty much has to be mentioned in any golf post. I don’t see him doing much in this tourney. A moral victory for him and his fans would have him on the leaderboard Sunday, but I don’t expect that to happen in this tourney. Adam Scott is playing out of his mind since Stevie took over his bag. Maybe he knows people aren’t even paying attention to him so he’s in a no pressure situation. He’s already taken Tigers old swing coach, his caddie, now he needs to find a way to take the swagger that Tiger brings to the course.

The Asains. Ryo Ishikawa hasn’t even figured out what he can and can’t do at the age of 19. We all see his potential, and finishing 2nd at the US Open only showed us a tip of the proverbial iceberg of his talent. There’s one main reason to root for him though, and it’s because he’s giving all his earnings this year to the Japan relief. KJ Choi is often overlooked, but he’s always grinding away.  Ever since winning the Players Championship he hasn’t fared too well. I’m not picking him because he has struggled lately. Y.E. Yang is more known as the first guy to beat Tiger heads up on a Sunday, but he’s quietly put together a solid season. None of his stats stand out this year, but he’s not out of the top 30 in most tournaments.

My final lineup is; 

Dustin Johnson

Jason Day

Rickie Fowler

Adam Scott

Y.E. Yang

Steve Stricker

Kaymer Wins the PGA Championship, But Dustin Johnson’s Mishap Gained the Intrigue

I’ve been a Dustin Johnson fan for about two years now, and today when he sunk his birdie on the 17th/71st hole at Whistling Straights, I thought for sure he’d be the winner of his first major at the PGA Championship. I was really excited for the guy that I’d been pulling for to break through over the last couple seasons. I met him when he was first coming onto the scene, and he was a very likable guy. Really easy going, and someone you truly want to see succeed. He had more Phil than Tiger in him. I thought his coming out party was going to happen when he was leading in the US Open at Pebble Beach heading into the final round, but he choked hard on the 2nd and 3rd holes, and was never able to recover. Even MCeezy, who never watches golf was pulling for him in the US Open. He was right there at the Brittish Open, but Louie had an insurmountable lead after getting favorable playing conditions for each of his rounds, so DJ was an after thought on the leader board as was everyone else on that Sunday. I thought today was DJ’s day since he was one shot up with only one hole to go, but it wasn’t to be as he was once again a victim of himself.

Is it a bunker? I wouldn't call it one, unless the green fees were only $1 for that course....

His tee shot was bad, but the disaster wasn’t even him hitting his second shot from the middle of a hoard of onlookers. You’ve probably heard about it by now. His ball was sitting in what looked like a cart path like area that was trampled from numerous spectators walking on it all weekend. I’m not saying that it didn’t look like a bunker, but it was one f***ed up bunker that looked worse than any municipal course bunker I’ve seen. In the heat of the moment, it was tough to really confirm that he was in a bunker. When he addressed the ball in the f***ed up bunker, he ended up touching his club to the ground, and that cost him any chance at the major. There were boos raining down from the crowd as the ruling was made shortly after he putted out and was on his way to what seemed to be a three way playoff. The ruling honestly killed my enthusiasm for the playoff and the rest of the tourney. I can’t say I don’t agree with the ruling, since a rule is a rule, and they did post it in the locker rooms. The only winner in this situation was CBS, because all the drama at the end had to add to their ratings.

All in all, it was Johnson’s fault for not taking the time to check it out with a rules official or anyone just to make sure that it wasn’t a hazard. Actually if I was DJ, I’d probably have some choice words for Bobby Brown (his caddy) for not noticing that it was a hazard. Every players caddy should be reminding their player of rules on any particular course. The caddies sure make enough to be held accountable for that (10% of the winnings usually). DJ handled it classy though. He didn’t scream injustice or cry about it. He solemnly faced the reporters the same way he did after his implosion at Pebble, and gave them the disappointed answers they were looking for. As an avid golf fan, I’m happy that we will have a better storyline for the major news networks to talk about than how Phil and Tiger did. Hopefully this will be a tipping point to where we can start talking about all the great up and coming golfers in the mainstream media like McIllroy, Johnson, Watson, Ishikawa, Kaymer, and Day.

The Decline of Tiger Doin Work Roundtable

There has been much press recently on the first time Tiger Woods has looked like a mortal. Many are stating that Tiger’s career may be over, but ESPN writer Gene Wojekowski thinks differently. We decided to discuss the “meltdown” Tiger suffered on the way to losing his first major.

Tiger Woods angry club toss

Tony: I think implying that he choked is stretching a bit. He played GREAT golf, but the variables to putting can be complex and sometimes it just doesn’t click. A choke is Harrington carding a snowman on 12 (or whatever hole it was), or the week previously when he imploded late, or Watson sending an easy 8 iron 15 yrds long to win a major a choke. I believe tiger had one three putt all day…I don’t buy the idea he totally choked, did he have a crappy day on the greens? TOTALLY. His putts were close all day…how many edge burners did he have….he started with a nasty putt that set the tone for the rest of the day. It didn’t click for him and he lost…but I think “choke” is a strong word. Downside at 33? To even suggest that is totally ignorant IMHO. Haters!!

Brian: Yeah, it’s not like he had that terrible of a round. By his standards it may have been terrible, but overall he wasn’t that bad on Sunday. I think the idea of his career being on the downslide is ridiculous. Every golfer has bad putting days, we just aren’t used to seeing it from Tiger on a Sunday of a major. This is the main reasons he has been the best golfer in the world, because he doesn’t have many days like this! I think he comes back next year pissed off and wins a minimum of two majors.

Andre: Seriously, I almost vomited when I read that one line filler. Tiger played great all week tee to green, and until Sunday was making putts as well.  It doesn’t matter if he only 3-putt once or twice, he had several birdie putts in the 8-12 ft range that he usually makes on his way to victory while leading by two, starting off with his miss on the first hole, and his timely three putt on the 17th hole.  That’s not the way Tiger, the best putter under pressure in the game, does on a Major Sunday.   He shot 75 for christ sake!!  He made 5 bogeys, and we know he hates to make even 1!

Tony: I agree with everything…(I was waiting for you to mention the 75!)….but putting is complex…if it doesn’t click I don’t think it equates automatically to a “choke” situation. But really this is all semantics; he will silence everybody about this hiccup sooner rather then later…and have the real last laugh when he nips Snead and Jack respectively down the road.

Andre: I think we need to hold Tiger to a higher standard.  Why would we stop now?  That’s why I keep referencing he’s THE BEST PUTTER EVER, especially IN THE CLUTCH.  He’s not you or me where putting comes an goes.  After his re-hab from knee surgery, his short game was supposed to be so strong.  And he had gotten it into really good shape the past three tourneys.  Why let him off for the biggest round of all 12 previous rounds?  Sunday at a Major!!  Don’t let him off so easy I tell you!!

Brian: I have to say that I am a hater, but in the end golf wouldn’t be nearly as fun to watch without him at the top of his game. We might have more likable guys on tour to root for, but it’s much different than watching a player that is obviously the best. He’s far from done, and I don’t think you could convince any of his peers that he’s on the downside of his career either…
This is pretty funny…

Yang Tames a Tiger

YE Yang Fist Pump Tiger

Somehow, Y.E. Yang did all the fist pumping and dancing around the greens in front of a stunned Tiger on his huge Sunday charge that made him the winner of the PGA Championship. The ultimate fist pump came when he chipped in an eagle on the 14th hole to take the lead away from Tiger for the first time in this major championship.YE Yang Fist Pump Yang took down the seemingly unbeatable Woods! It was Tiger’s first loss in a major when leading or having a share of the lead in the final round. This was Yang’s first major win, and it was only his second PGA Tour win of his career. It was the second time he beat Woods though, as he took him down in China a couple of years ago. This was far different and there was much more pressure. What made it more amazing was the fact he took down the worlds #1 golfer by playing in the final pairing with Woods, and shot an amazing 5 shots better than Tiger for the day!

During the whole telecast the CBS crew kept waiting and talking about when Tiger would do his usual thing, which is come back and win. This was the first time that it wasn’t his day as the announcers kept inquiring”Is this the putt that gets Tiger going? Was that the drive?” As they hoped they would see some historical shot by Tiger none of them conceded that Yang could really win this tournament, until Tiger missed the green badly on the 18th hole. Honestly, I didn’t really think he’d win either, but on the par 3 17th hole when Yang hit his tee shot it landed inches from a hillside that would have kicked his ball into the water it felt like it was his day.YE Yang PGA Championship Instead of his ball going out of bounds, his ball landed about 10 feet from the hole giving him a birdie opportunity. He had luck on his side, as there were a few other bounces that went his way, but this one was the most pivotal!

Although Tiger was missing putts that he usually makes, Yang was the more aggressive player on the course as he went for all he could on every shot. Meanwhile Woods seemed to lay up on holes, and take the safe route. He looked like he was playing not to win, but just trying to not lose. I think Woods thought Yang would just fade away the same way Harrington did last week. That was not the case, as Yang didn’t care about the huge gallery following Tiger, and played his game aggressively from start to finish!

Yang marks the first time a Major Championship has been won by an Asian, well, I guess the first full Asian winner, because Tiger is a halfer. I along with many felt that KJ Choi would be the first Asian to win a major, but Yang took those honors! The win can only help golf as they are always trying to expand their horizons across the globe. Go asian people!

If Tiger is Superman, does Padraig Harrington have any Kryptonite in his bag?

Tiger Woods drives a Buick Enclave!?! You'd think with all that money he'd drive something better!

Tiger Woods drives a Buick Enclave!?! You'd think with all that money he'd drive something better!

Is Padriag Harrington the next in line on the PGA’s attempt to find a rival for Tiger? With Woods looking about ready to wrap up his 15th major, there has been a buzz around Harrington (the defending champion of the event) playing very well for a second week in a row. Phil Mickelson and all of his troubles this year hasn’t put together much of a challenge on Tiger’s thrown, but he has been in and out of golf all season for obvious family reasons. Truthfully what can you expect from Phil if he isn’t able to properly practice and prepare himself to play at the highest level. Today, Harrington was quoted saying he wanted to play with Tiger in the final group. Harrington unfortunately didn’t get his wish as Y.E. Yang will play with him in the final group Sunday. Yang actually beat Tiger when he was in China at a tournament, but I have a feeling this will be a little different. Every player that gets paired with Tiger shoots an average of three shots higher than him, so I don’t see tomorrow playing out differently. It has to be tough playing with a gallery of Tiger’s size surrounding you all over the course.

I’m all for Paddy being the next contender to Tiger though, because last weekend he was paired with Tiger in the final round of the Buick Open, and held his lead after the 15th hole lead by 1 stroke.

Not everybody is intimidated by Tiger all the time.

Not everybody is intimidated by Tiger all the time.

Something weird happened on the 16th hole though, as even Woods came off the course furious about what happened on the 16th hole, eventhough he was the beneficiary of the occurrence. Harrington had a triple bogey on the 16th hole, and it was later revealed that Harrington was pushed by one of the rules officials John Paramor, for exceeding time limits. This would be understandable if they were in an earlier group, but they were the final group playing for a tournament and a million dollars! It was completely ridiculous.

Tiger later stated “He (rules official) got in the way of a great battle. It was such a great battle for 16 holes, and we’re going at it head to head, and unfortunately that happened. I don’t know why we were put on the clock.”

Hopefully Paramor didn’t put them on the clock so they’d finish in time for the CBS to broadcast their rerularly scheduled program! Well guess what? They finished at 6 p.m. on the dot.

Either way I like Paddy’s confidence around Tiger, because it’s basically the opposite of nearly every other player on the tour. Harrington went on to say that he felt comfortable playing with Tiger. He feels that Tiger forces him to not take too cautious of an approach, and go for more aggressive shots than he normally would. Harrington struggled early this year as he’s made major changes to his swing.Padraig Harrington PGA Championship It looks like the last two weeks have shown that he is finding his groove with that new swing. If he becomes the next player to challenge Tiger, I’d like that. He seems to feel like he can win, and has fun with it the same way Phil does on the course. He may not be able to take Tiger down this Sunday, mainly because Tiger has won every tournament (14-0) that he held the third round lead in, but that doesn’t mean I won’t be pulling for him. I don’t know why, but I always root against Tiger. I guess I just like to root for the least likely outcome… Go Harrington and/or Lee!