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Battle in Beantown: Deutsche Bank preview



By Pete Pappas

GolfWRX Staff Writer

The FedExCup Playoffs continue this week with the 2012 Deutsche Bank Championship, and when the last shot is fired Labor Day evening at TPC Boston only 70 players will be left standing.

The Deutsche Bank Championship is the second of four events in the PGA Tour playoffs, and has produced five different winners since the tournament became part of the playoffs in 2007. Past winners of the event include Phil Mickelson, Vijay Singh, Steve Stricker, Charley Hoffman, and the defending champion and 2012 U.S. Open winner Webb Simpson.

The FedExCup leaders will tee off together and marquee groups battling in Beantown (with their current rankings in the FedExCup) are Nick Watney (1), Brandt Snedeker (2), and Tiger Woods (3).

Last week Watney turned his season around, going from two-down to three-up in a four-hole swing to surge past Sergio Garcia on the final day and win The Barclays (and with that victory, Watney leaped 48 spots to his current first place in the FedExCup standings).

Woods, on the other hand, suffered through another troublesome and increasingly common weekend collapse.  Nevertheless — he’ll try to become the second two-time winner of the Deutsche Bank Championship (Singh won in 2004 and 2008).  And to that aim Woods comes into TPC Boston healthy.

“The back’s good,” Woods said at a press conference this week, referring to the lower back injury he suffered last week while sleeping on a soft hotel mattress.

2012 PGA Championship winner Rory McIlroy (4), Zach Johnson (5) and Jason Dufner (6) is another group worth watching.

McIlroy has only one previous FedExCup playoff appearance (finishing T37 here in 2010).  But the young Irishman’s 2012 campaign has been as impressive as anyone’s on Tour.  To go along with his second career major victory at the PGA Championship, McIlroy also won The Honda Classic and twice finished runner-up at the World Golf Championships-Accenture Match Play Championship and the Wells Fargo Championship.

Dufner also comes into Boston with two victories this year — the Zurich Classic of New Orleans and HP Byron Nelson Championship. And the native Clevelander also boasts eight top-10 finishes in this season.

“I had a good run in the regular season to get to this point, and I’m excited about the last three events, playing some great golf courses, against some obviously great fields,” Dufner said.

And after skipping last week’s playoff opener Dufner said he is fresh and focused.

“I feel good after the week off,” he said. “I had a nice week at home, just resting, and getting ready for this stretch.”

Other star-studded groupings include Bubba Watson (7), Dustin Johnson (8), and Carl Pettersson (9); Matt Kuchar (11), Hunter Mahan (12), and Keegan Bradley (13); Luke Donald (14), Justin Rose (15), and Stricker (15); and Mickelson (17), Ernie Els (18), and Rickie Fowler (19).

The top 70 players on the FedExCup points list after the Deutsche Bank Championship advance to the BMW Championship next week. And the top five after the BMW control their own destiny. They can win the FedExCup with a victory in the final event, the Tour Championship presented by Coca Cola — which turns the heat up on the 98 players in the field this week to jockey as close as possible to that magical five spot.

And to add just a little more drama to stakes this week, the 18th green at TPC Boston has been redesigned specifically for the Deutsche Bank Championship.  Scoring will be more difficult with the green raised about two feet.  And subtle changes to the surrounding area add a risk-reward dimension that could result in the tournament being won or lost on a final shot.

Click here for more discussion in the “Tour Talk” forum. 

You can follow Pete @TheGreekGrind and GolfWRX @GolfWRX

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Pete is a journalist, commentator, and interviewer covering the PGA Tour, new equipment releases, and the latest golf fashions. Pete's also a radio and television personality who's appeared multiple times on ESPN radio, and Fox Sports All Bets Are Off. And when he's not running down a story, he's at the range working on his game. Above all else, Pete's the proud son of a courageous mom who battled pancreatic cancer much longer than anyone expected. You can follow Pete on twitter @PGAPappas

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Rory McIlroy’s Winning WITB: 2018 Arnold Palmer Invitational



Driver: TaylorMade M3 460 (8.5 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Tensei Orange 70TX

3 Wood: TaylorMade M3 (15 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Tensei CK Pro White 80TX

5 Wood: TaylorMade M3 (19 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura Rombax P95X

Irons: TaylorMade P-750 (4), TaylorMade “Rors Proto” P-730 (5-9)
Shafts: Project X 7.0

Wedges: TaylorMade Milled Grind (48, 52 and 58 degrees), Taylormade Hi-Toe (60 degrees)
Shafts: Project X 6.5

Putter: TaylorMade TP Collection Black Copper Soto (with slant neck)

Golf Ball: TaylorMade TP5x


Discussion: See what GolfWRX members are saying about McIlroy’s clubs.

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Bob Parsons explains why PXG Gen2 irons cost $400, but are “probably worth $1000”



As part of the launch of its new 0311 Gen2 irons, Parsons Xtreme Golf (PXG) offered me time to interview the man himself, Bob Parsons, who’s the founder and CEO of PXG. Parsons founded in 1997, among other companies throughout his professional career, and depending on how much you trust Forbes’ Net Worth estimates, he’s worth $3 billion.

So why did he start a golf equipment company, and what makes PXG so different? In my interview with Parsons (who’s quite the character, as you’ll find out), we discuss those questions and much more.

I encourage you to watch the entire interview (obviously), but for your viewing convenience, here are the topics we covered and the timestamps from the 12-minute interview above. Enjoy!

  • Scottsdale National Golf Club upgrades and new Gen2 irons (0:37)
  • What made you start a golf company? (1:25)
  • Spending $350,000 a year on golf clubs (2:24)
  • Recruiting Mike Nicolette and breaking the mold of product releases (2:48)
  • Were you nervous it took three years to upgrade the irons? (3:45)
  • New COR2 technology and its benefits (4:33)
  • Did you set out to disrupt the industry? (5:30)
  • PXG’s growth in size and Tour presence (5:55)
  • What’s your favorite country to play golf in? (6:41)
  • What’s your relationship with the military? (6:55)
  • What’s in your bag? (8:55)
  • What’s your relationship with GolfWRX? (9:45)
  • Why are these irons $50 more expensive? (10:09)
  • When can we expect new metalwoods and Gen3 irons? (11:18)
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Kelly Tilghman leaving Golf Channel after 22 years



Kelly Tilghman is stepping away from Golf Channel after a 22-year run at the network. The Myrtle Beach native has been a less visible presence on air in recent years.

The first woman to serve as play-by-play announcer for a PGA Tour event, Tilghman announced Wednesday that this will be her last week at Golf Channel.

Tilghman began working at the network in 1996 in the tape library, starting just a year after Golf Channel’s inception. Her departure leaves Mike Ritz and Rich Lerner as the only remaining on-air talents from the channel’s early years.

Golf Channel released this statement.

Tilghman told Golfweek’s Forecaddie she’s not done with television just yet.

“This process was very peaceful for me…I can’t imagine a scenario where I would never be on television again.”

In a farewell letter published on Golf Channel’s website, Tilghman wrote about the decision to step away at Bay Hill.

“It’s the perfect spot for so many obvious reasons. Arnold’s family will be there. My Golf Channel and NBC family will be there. I know you will too, like you always have. I’ll forever cherish the memories we’ve built together.”

You can read her full letter here, which includes the Arnold Palmer anecdote below.

“Enter Arnold Palmer. I’ll never forget that day in the early years when he paid our tiny newsroom a surprise visit. It was an honor to be in his presence. One could only imagine how I felt when he put his hand on my shoulder and whispered, “I hope you believe in this place as much as I do.”

“Yes, Arnold, I did.”

See what GolfWRX members are saying about Tilghman’s departure in the forums.


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19th Hole