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Morning 9: Tiger: Greg has to go | Smith slams OWGR | Mickelson responds to Tiger’s claim

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By Ben Alberstadt with Gianni Magliocco and Matthew Vincenzi.

For comments: [email protected]. On Twitter: @benalberstadt

November 30, 2022

Good Wednesday morning, golf fans, with Tiger Woods stealing the show on Tuesday with a fascinating press conference at the Hero covering a number of topics.

1. Tiger: Greg Norman has to go

SkySports report…“Tiger Woods has echoed Rory McIlroy’s call for Greg Norman to quit as LIV Golf CEO to allow a peace settlement to be negotiated in golf’s civil war.”

  • “Speaking on Tuesday at a press conference ahead of the Hero World Challenge, which he has pulled out of due to injury, Woods said: “I see that there’s an opportunity out there if both organisations put a stay on their litigation, but that’s the problem, they’ve got to put a stay on it.”
  • “And whether or not they do that or not, there’s no willingness to negotiate if you have a litigation against you. So if they both have a stay and then have a break and then they can meet and figure something out, then maybe there is something to be had.
  • “But I think Greg has to go, first of all, and then obviously litigation against us and then our countersuit against them, those would then have to be at a stay as well.
  • “So then we can talk, we can all talk freely.”
Full piece.

2. Woods the dealmaker?

Golf Channel’s Rex Hoggard…”Woods has been content to let McIlroy stand for the Tour, and he appreciates how the Northern Irishman has been able to juggle being the frontman in a global divide and remain the game’s top-ranked player. But Woods’ relative silence on the issue, at least compared to McIlroy, shouldn’t be confused for indifference. He understands better than anyone that change is needed and that he’s the most likely conduit for that change.”

  • “I don’t know whether it’s going to be me, Rory, or the Tour, or other players being, I wouldn’t necessarily say a peacemaker, but I just think that there’s a window of opportunity for us from both tours to figure this out shortly,” Woods said. “That window’s closing just because the majors are coming up now, and they’re going to have their own criteria for the majors.”
  • “If all politics is local, then Woods proved how dedicated he was to the Tour’s cause by flying to Delaware in August for a player’s-only meeting. Along with McIlroy, Tiger laid out a future that would allow the game’s best players to remain loyal to the Tour and earn guaranteed money…”
  • “For a player who has largely stayed out of the Tour’s decision-making process, it was a crucial moment. His tone on Tuesday in Albany was just as crucial. In this case, in this moment, the status quo of saying much without saying anything at all just wouldn’t work.”
Full piece.

3. Woods on OWGR

Golf Digest’s Joel Beall…”Speaking to the media Tuesday at the Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas, Woods was asked his thoughts about the OWGR, which released a modernized formula for its weekly calculations this past summer. The 15-time major winner didn’t mince words when giving his opinion on the matter.”

  • “It’s a flawed system. That’s something we all here recognize,” Woods said. “The field at Dubai [the DP World Tour Championship] got less points than Sea Island [RSM Classic] and more of the top players were there in Dubai, so obviously there’s a flawed system…”
  • “How do you fix it? You know, those are meetings we’re going to have to have,” Woods continued. “We’re going to have to have it with the World Golf committee and as well as our—the main tours that are involved in it, somehow [need] to] come up with a better system than is in place now. I remember in my career, when I … I had a big lead in my career, I didn’t have to play a single tournament the next year, and I still would be ranked No. 1. We changed that system then. So it has been changed in the past and I’m sure this will be changed hopefully soon.”
Full piece.

4. Tiger’s plans

Cameron Morfit for PGATour.com…”For Woods, the winner of 82 PGA TOUR events, including 15 majors, this is the new normal.”

  • “The goal is to play just the major championships and maybe one or two more,” he said. “That’s it. I mean, physically that’s all I can do. … I don’t have much left in this leg.”
  • “When he does play, he continued, he’ll just hope to catch lightning in a bottle and remember how to close. It will be hard, he added, relegating himself to tournament hosting duties this week.”
  • “When I was at home,” he said, “I was shooting 4, 5, 6, 7 under par like it was nothing, but I was in a cart. Now you add in walking and that goes away.”
Full piece.

5. Tiger’s health

ESPN’s Mark Schlabach…”Tiger Woods on Tuesday said he had two additional surgeries this year and that the plantar fasciitis in his right foot that will prevent him from playing this week is related to his ongoing recovery from serious injuries suffered in a car wreck outside Los Angeles in February 2021.”

  • “Woods, 46, declined to disclose details about the two surgeries or the specific dates of the procedures while talking to reporters at the Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas.”
  • “Woods said he began to suffer from plantar fasciitis, inflammation that causes heel pain, while ramping up to play in the Hero World Challenge, a tournament that benefits his charity, TGR Foundation.”
  • “It was a tough decision just because I want to play,” Woods said. “I like playing, I like competing, but unfortunately, I can hit the golf ball and hit whatever shot you want, I just can’t walk. And so I’ve had a few setbacks during the year that I still was able to somehow play through, but this one I just can’t. Only time can heal this one, and stay off my feet and get a lot of treatment done.”
Full piece.

6. Westwood’s son to make pro debut

Mike Hall for Golf Monthly…“Lee Westwood is in Jakarta this week as he aims for his fourth Indonesian Masters title as the Asian Tour season concludes.”

  • “However, while much of the attention will be on the 49-year-old as he attempts to replicate his successes at Royale Jakarta Golf Club in 2011, 2012 and 2015, for another member of the Westwood family, it will be a memorable occasion too.”
  • “Westwood’s son, Samuel, is making his pro debut in the tournament – which is also part of the International Series – but his father explained he’s keen not to put too much expectation on his son. He said: “He started playing the game very late. He only took up the game seriously at age 16 and he is 21 now. I don’t really have any expectations for him this week. I just want him to enjoy himself.”
Full piece.

7. Smith slams OWGR

Our Matt Vincenzi…”Fresh off a victory at the Fortinet Australian PGA Championship, the current world number 3 will likely see a freefall in the rankings as time goes by. As it stands, golfers playing on the LIV Tour won’t receive OWGR points for the foreseeable future.”

  • “Smith told media at the Australian Open:”
  • “I’m still third on the list somehow, but as time goes on, I think those rankings become more and more irrelevant, especially with not getting world ranking points in those LIV events.”
Full piece.

8. Mickelson responds to Tiger’s ‘loan’ claim

Mike Hall for Golf Monthly…”Earlier in the year, Phil Mickelson suggested the PGA Tour could offer greater financial incentives to its players, and claimed the organisation has plenty of money at its disposal. Then, after LIV Golf was launched, the Tour appeared to prove his point by introducing a series of changes, including purses of at least $20m in several of its newly elevated events.”

  • However, Tiger Woods, who is in the Bahamas to host the Hero World Challenge, has refuted the notion that the PGA Tour is flush with money – which has inadvertently drawn a response from one of his great rivals.
  • When asked if the likes of Mickelson, who were criticised for joining LIV Golf, were owed an apology given the extra money their actions have ensured for PGA Tour players, he said: “No, absolutely not, no. We took out an enormous loan during the pandemic in which that, if we had another year of the pandemic, our Tour would only be sustained for another year. So we took out an enormous loan. It worked, it paid off in our benefit, hence we were able to use that money to make the increases that we’ve made.”
  • That led to CBS Sports golf writer Kyle Porter tweeting: “Phil: “They’re sitting on $800M.” Tiger: “We took out an enormous loan during the pandemic.””
  • It didn’t take long for Mickelson to respond. He wrote: “Pga tour IRS 990 form from 2018. 1.6 billion in stocks 700 million in cash 1.15 billion in non-liquid assets. This is from the non-profit section. The for-profit section hasn’t been stated since 2012 but was more than the non-profit part at that time. This can all be googled.”
Full piece.

9. Izzy Stricker chooses Wisconsin

Cameron Jourdan for Golfweek… “Last month, Izzy Stricker, the youngest daughter of Steve Stricker, came from behind to win an individual state championship for Waunakee High School, outside of Madison.

  • Now, she’s made her college decision and will be staying close to home. Stricker committed to the Wisconsin women’s golf program earlier this month, according to Wisconsin Golf, following a family tradition with the Badgers.
  • “I sort of always knew I wanted to go to Wisconsin so I didn’t have any other schools in mind,” Stricker told Wisconsin.Golf. “It’s always been a dream to follow my mom and sister’s footsteps and go to Wisconsin and I’ve always loved attending the football and basketball games as a kid. The university feels like home, and I could never imagine myself anywhere else.”
Full Piece.
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Morning 9: More from Phil | Josh Allen missing Pro Bowl to play golf | Bubba on Masters dinner

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By Ben Alberstadt with Gianni Magliocco and Matthew Vincenzi.

For comments: [email protected]

February 1, 2023

Good Wednesday morning, golf fans, and a happy February.

For me, Ben Hogan remains the standard of golf professionalism and respect for/dedication to the game of golf. And in his retirement from playing professionally, I respect the specificity of his focus — making golf equipment of the highest quality — rather than engaging in a broad-reaching licensing and branding business (and when he did, it was to substantive things like a development tour). Just my opinion, of course, and I welcome your rebuttals in favor of Arnie, Bobby, Byron, or Jack!

1. PGA Tour to ban non-members for a year if they play ‘unauthorized’ events

Golf Channel’s Rex Hoggard…”The PGA Tour has moved to stem the flow of players to LIV Golf even beyond its own membership with a new regulation that comes with a one-year ban.”

  • “According to the regulation, which began with the 2022-23 season, “any player who has participated in an unauthorized tournament is ineligible to compete in any event sanctioned by the PGA Tour for a period of one year.”
  • An “unauthorized tournament” is defined in the player handbook as “any golf event for which the commissioner has denied or has indicated he would deny all conflicting event releases and/or media releases or not eligible for releases because it is to be held in North America.”
Full piece.

2. Bubba on Masters dinner

Golf Channel’s Brentley Romine…”Scottie Scheffler has joked that he’ll have a “separate table” for Bubba Watson at this year’s Masters Champions Dinner.”

  • “Even if that was true, Watson says he’d have no issue.”
  • “Hey, as long as I’m in the Champions Dinner, I’m fine,” Watson said Tuesday in his pre-tournament press conference at the Saudi International. “I’ll sit wherever he tells me. It’s fine. As long as I’m allowed back, I’ll sit wherever he wants me to. I’ll sit outside and just stare in the window.”
Full piece.

3. Phil on the road ahead

A bit from (the now more restrained) Lefty’s Q&A with S.I.’s Bob Harig…

  • “SI: Do you wonder about the possibility of never playing in another PGA Tour event?”
  • “PM: If I were never to play another PGA Tour event, I’m totally at peace with it. But I believe by next year I’ll have the opportunity if I want [due to the pending litigation]. I don’t know if I’ll have the time. I’m playing 19 events and don’t know how much more. I’d actually rather scale down the number of tournaments, because I’m also in the four majors. That’s a lot of golf.”
  • “But I’m motivated and excited to get started. All of these things create new energy. Having teammates to push each other. I’m motivated, but I don’t see the benefit to playing more. The tournaments where you are going to leave a mark are the majors. That creates a life memory. If I win another Tour event, who cares? It’s not like it’s going to do anything for how I look at my career. Another major would be a unique, special moment. That’s really where I want to thrive. And sure, it would mean a lot to win some LIV events because of the role I’ve played as it’s been created.”
Full piece.

4. Rising LPGA star Linn Grant likely to miss first major of season due to U.S. vaccine travel restrictions

Golfweek’s Beth Ann Nichols…“Linn Grant will begin her 2023 season in Morocco next week on the Ladies European Tour. One of the most promising young players in the game, Grant was forced to play a limited LPGA schedule last year because U.S. travel restrictions won’t let her in the country as she is not vaccinated against COVID-19.”

  • “Grant, who is currently No. 28 in the Rolex Rankings, will be able to compete in the LPGA’s upcoming Asian swing, but her agent, Pelle Krüger said they’re not optimistic that she’ll be able to compete in the year’s first major, the Chevron Championship.”
Full piece.

5. Fitzpatrick joins TGL

Reuters report…”U.S. Open champion Matthew Fitzpatrick has agreed to participate in the tech-focused golf league that is being launched next year by Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy’s TMRW Sports in conjunction with the PGA Tour, the company said on Tuesday.”

  • “World number 10 Fitzpatrick is the seventh player to commit to competing in TGL’s inaugural season along with fellow major winners Woods, McIlroy, Justin Thomas, Jon Rahm, Adam Scott and Collin Morikawa.”
Full piece.

6. Homa celebrates Farmers win by cleaning up at Papago Skins

7. Why Josh Allen is missing the Pro Bowl

Nick Wojton for Bills Wire…“Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen is hitting the links at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am golf tournament rather than playing in the National Football League’s Pro Bowl.”

  • “The Bills QB was announced as one of the guests invited to the PGA Tour event this week. It will take place from Feb. 2-5 in California.”
  • “Allen is no stranger to the event, having taken part in it in 2022.”
Full Piece.

8. Cam Smith on OWGR situation

Elliott Heath for Golf Monthly…”Cameron Smith makes his first start of 2023 at the Asian Tour’s flagship event in Saudi Arabia this week, with the 150th Open champion entering the tournament as World No.4.”

  • Asked about how he feels about his OWGR slide, Smith said it “hurts” and also claimed the rankings were becoming more “obsolete.”
  • “I mean, I’ve tried to take it not that badly, to be honest,” he said at this week’s Saudi International. “I think when you rock up to a tournament, you know who you have to beat, whether there’s a World Ranking or not. There’s generally seven or eight guys that are in that field that you know are going to put up a pretty good fight.
  • “For sure it hurts. I feel as though I was really close to getting to No.1, and that was definitely something I wanted to tick off, but kind of the longer that this stuff goes on, I think the more obsolete those rankings become.
  • “That’s just the long and short of it, I think. Do we need them? It would be nice, but like I said, you know who you’ve got to beat when you get on the golf course.”
Full Piece.

9. AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am photos

  • Check out our galleries from this week’s tour stop!
Full Piece.
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Morning 9: Saudi Ladies Intl. attracts star names | Rory defends Reed | Full LIV schedule

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By Ben Alberstadt with Gianni Magliocco and Matthew Vincenzi.

For comments: [email protected]

January 31, 2023

Good Tuesday morning, golf fans. as we gear up for another big week at Pebble Beach.

1. Ko, Thompson, Kang headline Saudi Ladies International

Golfweek’s Beth Ann Nichols…“The Aramco Saudi Ladies International has announced that 13 major winners will be included in this year’s field, highlighted by World No. 1 Lydia Ko, Lexi Thompson, In Gee Chun, Danielle Kang and defending champ Georgia Hall.”

  • “The event, which is the presented by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund, takes place Feb. 16-19 at Royal Greens Golf and Country Club and features an upgraded purse of $5 million. More LPGA stars are expected to be announced in the coming weeks.”
  • “The 120-player field will feature 60 Ladies European Tour players, 50 from the top 300 in the Rolex Rankings and a maximum of 10 sponsor invites. The winner will receive $750,000.”
Full piece.

2. Full LIV schedule finalized

The official press release…”The first official season of the groundbreaking LIV Golf League will feature 14 events in seven different countries showcasing some of the top championship courses in the world, including a return to five venues that hosted tournaments as part of the 2022 LIV Golf Invitational Series. Centurion Club outside London, England (July 7-9), Trump National Golf Club Bedminster in Bedminster, New Jersey (August 11-13), Rich Harvest Farms outside Chicago, Illinois (September 22-24), Trump National Doral Golf Club in Miami, Florida (October 20-22) and Royal Greens Golf & Country Club near Jeddah, Saudi Arabia (November 3-5) will welcome back many of the sport’s biggest stars for the landmark season in the league’s official launch. In addition, fans in the U.S. will see LIV Golf’s innovative league at Orange County National in Orlando, Florida (March 31-April 2) and at Trump National Golf Club, Washington D.C. (May 26-28).”

  • “These seven venues, alongside the seven previously announced dates and locations complete the 2023 LIV Golf League schedule: Mayakoba’s El Camaleón Golf Course on Mexico’s Riviera Maya (February 24-26), The Gallery Golf Club in Tucson, Arizona (March 17-19), The Grange Golf Club in Adelaide, Australia (April 21-23), The Serapong at Sentosa Golf Club in Singapore (April 28-30), Cedar Ridge Country Club in Tulsa, Oklahoma (May 12-14), Real Club Valderrama in Andalucía, Spain (June 30-July 2) and The Greenbrier in the Allegheny Mountains of West Virginia (August 4-6).”
  • “We received tremendous feedback globally from fans throughout our beta-test year, with one resounding theme: LIV Golf’s team format, innovations, and festival-like events are delivering a one-of-a-kind golf experience,” said LIV Golf CEO and Commissioner Greg Norman. “Last year helped lay the foundation for the future of golf at extraordinary courses that have hosted some of the world’s top competitions. LIV Golf’s schedule features fantastic venues and championship sites for our official league launch that will carry the sport into a new era.”
Full piece.

3. Get ready for Marcus Byrd

Adam Woodard for Golfweek…”Get familiar with the name Marcus Byrd, golf fans. You’ll see a lot of him over the next month.”

  • “Last week Byrd was announced as the 2023 Charlie Sifford Memorial Exemption for the PGA Tour’s upcoming Genesis Invitational, Feb. 16-19 at Riviera Country Club, and he celebrated by winning the APGA Farmers Insurance Invitational on Sunday at Torrey Pines.”
  • “Byrd was the first-round leader after he opened with a 1-over 73 and then cruised to a five-shot win after a 3-over 75 in the final round. A former star for Middle Tennessee State and 2019 Conference USA Golfer of the Year, Byrd finished atop the standings for the APGA’s Farmers Insurance Fall Series back in November and now has three APGA Tour wins.”
Full piece.

4. Mize at the Masters

Doug Stutsman, Special to The Augusta Chronicle…”The 1987 Masters Champion has confirmed that the 2023 Masters — his 40th consecutive — will be his last.”

  • “Mize, an Augusta native who lives in Columbus, Ga., hinted last April that 2023 could be his final competitive appearance, but after missing the cut with a Friday 78, he remained noncommittal about his future.”
Full piece.

5. Tour pro’s “legendary” eBay purchase

Our Jason Daniels…”Last week we were live from the PGA Show, reporting on all the goings-on at the annual gearhead junkie extravaganza.”

  • “For those on tour, though, it’s not always about the shiny new sticks, with some preferring to stick with what works even if that means searching high-and-low for replacements.”
  • “Last week 2011 US Amateur champion Kelly Kraft, who beat Patrick Cantlay at Erin Hills, turned up at the Farmers Insurance Open with a bag full of 2013 Callaway Legacy Black irons, something he bought on the second-hand market.”
  • “During the Farmers Insurance Open, Johnny Wunder, the Tour Content Manager for Callaway Golf, posted a photo of said clubs on his Instagram account, commenting: “@kellykraftgolf went and bought these on eBay…and I respect the hell out of him.”
Full piece.

6. Trump throws weight behind LIV

Alan Blinder for the New York Times…“Former President Donald J. Trump’s golf courses will host three tournaments this year for the breakaway league that Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund is underwriting, deepening the financial ties between a candidate for the White House and top officials in Riyadh.”

  • “LIV Golf, which in the past year has cast men’s professional golf into turmoil as it lured players away from the PGA Tour, said on Monday that it would travel to Trump courses in Florida, New Jersey and Virginia during this year’s 14-stop season. Neither the league nor the Trump Organization announced the terms of their arrangement, but the schedule shows the Saudi-backed start-up will remain allied with, and beneficial to, one of its foremost defenders and political patrons as he seeks a return to power.”
Full Piece.

7. Lowry splits with caddie

Brian Keogh for the Irish Independent…”Shane Lowry is urgently searching for a new caddie in Ryder Cup year after an amicable split with Brian “Bo” Martin last weekend.”

  • The Offaly man teamed up with Martin at the Portugal Masters in 2018 and after ending a three-and-a-half-year drought at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship in 2019, the bearded duo formed a tight bond with the highlights their six-stroke win in The Open Championship at Royal Portrush in 2019 and last September’s bogey-free BWM PGA Championship win at Wentworth.
  • The split with Martin was confirmed by Lowry’s management company Horizon Sports Management last night and the Irish Independent understands the pair had been considering the move for several weeks, believing their near four-and-a-half-year relationship had lost its “spark” or “chemistry”.
Full Piece.

8. Rory defends Reed

Michael Schmitt for Planet Sport…”Reed, who has been at the center of several rules controversies throughout his career, found himself embroiled in yet another one at last week’s Dubai Desert Classic.

  • “During the third round, Reed’s drive on the 17th hole at Emirates Golf Club got stuck in a tree and required binoculars to be identified. The ball was eventually found after a long search, allowing Reed to avoid playing a third shot from the tee, but several onlookers questioned whether the ball really could have been identified via binoculars, considering there were several other balls stuck in the same tree.”
  • “I felt it was fine,” McIlroy said. “If it had been anyone else in the field it would have been a nonissue, but because of certain things in the past, people bring stuff up, which is maybe unfair in some ways. But again, it is what it is. I’ve stood and defended Patrick in some of the controversies. I don’t feel like he was trying to get any advantage.”
Full Piece.

9. JT weighs in on jogger-gate

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Morning 9: Rory conquers in Dubai | Homa’s comeback win | Reed in fresh rules controversy

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By Ben Alberstadt with Gianni Magliocco and Matthew Vincenzi.

For comments: [email protected]

January 30, 2023

Good Monday morning, golf fans. after a weekend in which golf lovers were spoiled with entertainment.

1. Rory wins in Dubai

AP report…”Rory McIlroy overcame a final-round charge from Patrick Reed to win the Dubai Desert Classic in a tense Monday duel between players who were involved in a pre-tournament spat.

  • “World No. 1 McIlroy rolled in a birdie putt from around 15 feet at No. 18 for a 4-under 68 that left him a stroke clear of Reed, who shot 65.”
  • “McIlroy captured the title for the third time and has started a year with a win for the first time in his career.”
  • “It was a battle all day. Honestly it has been a battle all week,” McIlroy said. “I really feel like I haven’t had my best all week, but I managed my game and played really smart.
Full piece.

2. Homa wins Farmer from five back

AP report…”The L.A.-area native came from 5 shots off the lead to win the Farmers Insurance Open by 2 strokes over Keegan Bradley on Saturday at Torrey Pines, where Jon Rahm imploded early and missed a shot at winning his third straight start and moving to No. 1 in the world.”

  • “Homa reeled in Sam Ryder, who was trying for a wire-to-wire win, and then held off Bradley and Collin Morikawa for his sixth PGA Tour victory and fourth in his home state. He took the Genesis at Riviera in 2021 and has won the Fortinet Championship in Napa in consecutive years.”
  • “Homa closed with a 6-under 66 to finish at 13-under 275. He made a 4-foot birdie putt on No. 18 and pumped his right fist before greeting wife Lacey and infant son Cam just off the green.”
Full piece.

3. Reed’s palm tree problem

Golf Channel’s Brentley Romine…”Two swings essentially cost Patrick Reed a spot alongside Rory McIlroy in the last group for Monday’s final round of the Hero Dubai Desert Classic.”

  • Both resulted in unplayables, at the sixth and 17th holes, as Reed settled for a 3-under 69 and now find himself in a logjam at 11 under and four shots back of McIlroy.”
  • “A little frustrating,” Reed told reporters afterward. “Felt like I actually hit the ball a little better today. Had one loose swing there on 8 that made me take an unplayable. But then I got on 17, I felt like I hit a perfect drive, looking at the line I was looking at. If anything, I was hoping it might have been a hair more right. I hit it so solid, might just go through [the fairway], next thing you know, we find it in the palm tree.”
  • “Unlike the par-4 eighth hole, where Reed yanked his drive well left and ended up carding double bogey, he appeared to have cut the corner nicely at the dogleg-right, par-4 17th. But what could’ve been a 40-yard pitch or so for his second shot turned into a 50-yard third shot from the rough; television cameras showed Reed’s drive hitting one of a cluster of palm trees and not coming down.”
Full piece.

4. Rough stuff for Rahm

Golf Channel’s Brentley Romine…”Starting the final round of the Farmers Insurance Open just two shots back of leader Sam Ryder and playing alongside Ryder in the final threesome, Rahm bogeyed his first hole before adding a costly double bogey at the par-4 fifth and going out in 3-over 39. A bogey to open his back nine then put Rahm six shots off the pace at 6 under, and he went on to shoot 2-over 74 and tie for seventh.”

  • “I got a lot of bad breaks today,” Rahm said.
  • “Rahm’s double came after he yanked his drive well left and then badly missed the green left with his approach shot.”
  • “But that wasn’t even the worst of it.”
  • “Rahm proceeded to hit not one but two chips heavy, leaving both in the rough. His third chip wasn’t great, either, though Rahm saved himself from carding triple by sinking a 9-footer.”
Full piece.

5. Homa’s post-win presser highlights

Assembled by Golf Digest’s Tod Leonard…

  • On how soon the Farmers champ will be changing diapers….“It will happen. The sun will come up tomorrow and my son will need a diaper change many times before that. So I will be changing diapers, I will enjoy every second of it as I always do. It’s going to feel even better than normal. If he screams at me, I will just be smiling ear to ear. Yeah, these tournaments are hard, man, but it puts you in the best mood ever when you come out on top. He can poop away, and I’ll just be here for him.”
  • On the experience of wearing a mic on Friday and speaking to the CBS broadcasters while he played the South’s 13th hole. It was a first for an official PGA Tour event…“I’m very excited about the idea. I’m sure if we could tweet things how other people want to do it, how other players want to do it. If they don’t want to do it, I’ll keep doing it; it didn’t bother me. I thought it was great for the fans to look into, push that envelope for the fans. …
  • “It was great. It was cool to win after doing it. You always hear people say, ‘Oh, Tiger [Woods] would never do this, [Jon] Rahm would never do this, all they care about is winning.’ I get that, but you can do both. It was definitely nice to win doing that yesterday.”
Full piece.

6. Ryder on close call

Kevin Prise for PGATour.com…”It wasn’t the ideal final few holes – Ryder finished par-bogey-par – but he remained optimistic in his post-round comments. He graciously met the media and expressed confidence that he belongs in this position and will return accordingly.”

  • “There was definitely a lot of new pressure, but it was fun,” Ryder said in the Saturday twilight on the Pacific coastline. “I was trying to just enjoy it. It was a good experience for me, and I think it’s only going to feed me. My attitude was that no matter what happens, there are going to be positives to take away.
  • “It’s hard to swallow right now, but that’s what I’m telling myself. I’ll be able to build on that. And I really feel like playing with some of the best players in the world, I hit a lot of really good shots.”
Full Piece.

7. Homa’s secret weapon?

Adam Schupak for Golfweek…”Homa began working with Julie Elion, who is best known in the golf world for working with the likes of Phil Mickelson and helping Jimmy Walker win a major, late last year and the results have been immediate.”

  • “The confidence is becoming more steady. I’ve been working with a sports psychologist, Julie, who has – I mean the last two months have opened my eyes to a lot of things,” he said in his winner’s press conference. “Having a plan each day mentally. I didn’t go into a single round this week thinking about a technical goal or a statistical goal, it was I’m going to learn something today, I’m going to put in place what I’ve been working on, and today that’s what I did. I did a great job of it.”
Full Piece.

8. Lefty aims dig at the Tour in Twitter return

9. Winning WITB: Max Homa

Driver: Titleist TSR3 (10 degrees, A1 SureFit setting)

Shaft: Mitsubishi Tensei 1K Black 65 TX

3-wood: Titleist TSR3 (16.5 degrees, C1 SureFit setting)

Shaft: Fujikura Ventus Blue TR 8 X

7-wood: Titleist TSR2 (21 degrees, C1 SureFit setting)

Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD XC 9 TX

Irons: Titleist T100S (4), T100 (5), Titleist 620 MB (6-9)

Shafts: KBS Tour $-Taper 130 X

Wedges: Vokey Design SM9 (46-10F, 50-12F, 56-14F, 60-04L)

Shafts: KBS TOUR $-Taper 130 X (46), KBS Hi Rev 2.0 125 S (56-60)

Putter: Scotty Cameron T-5.5 prototype

Ball: 2023 Titleist Pro V1

Grips: Golf Pride Tour Velvet

Full Piece.
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