The group of Keegan Bradley, Webb Simpson, and Phil Mickelson combined for 0 bogeys on the day. Their bestball scorecard of -12 is especially efficient with only 14 birdies total. Quite a difference from the bestball card of the week last week.
Speaking of Phil, glad to see that his love handles are feeling better. Also interesting to note that he spent Tuesday and Wednesday over at Augusta preparing for the Masters. Not sure when that information came out, but that’s a damn good timing for skipping the pro am. But hey, by the time you’re Phil’s age (I’m assuming) you know exactly what you have to do to play well, so I’m all for him doing what it takes to play well when it counts even if it’s at the expense of the Shell executives.
How about the “return” of J.B. Holmes (if you can call T1 after 1 round a return). After breaking his ankle while rollerblading a little over a year ago in March, 2013 he’s been playing well lately with his first top 10 in over a year at the API. In fact, if you’re wondering why you haven’t really heard from him in a while, that might be because he also had something called Chiari malformations back in 2011. Hopefully this is a sign of good things to come and hopefully he isn’t distracted by his Kentucky Wildcats in the final four on Saturday.
Dustin Johnson looked like he was thinking of his fiancée, Paulina Gretzky, a little too much during the round. Coming home to her might take some of the pain out of shooting and 80. Super glad I picked him in fantasy this week /s.
Johnson started off poorly, +9 through 6 holes. Even by birdieing 7 and 8, he still was solidly in last place by 3 shots for most of the broadcast. And the Golf Channel showed pretty much every one of his shots. Granted part of that was because he How often does a guy solidly in last place get their round televised? Actually, I should probably change that to “how often is a guy ranked 10th in the world in dead last by 3 shots”?
One other thing I haven’t realized was how much a viewer is bombarded with golf tips during the Golf Channel’s coverage. Here’s a sample of the golf aids that there were commercials for: The CS2 putting device (Ian Poulter endorsed if you couldn’t tell by the website), Ernest Sports swing something (looks like it gives you swing stats), a FootJoy shoe that has a “precise fit” to make you play better, and the Tour Angle 144 (some chipping thing that looks like it makes you hinge your wrist). That last one also featured quite a few where did the soda go clips. Besides the products, the Golf Channel also pushed it’s prime time lineup which featured only segments where you can learn to be a better putter, at 8pm and 9pm eastern time. And even during the coverage the announcers talk about stances and shot types that the players are using and how you can apply them at home.
Last thing, I’m really curious to see how much having a morning tee time makes. Or I should probably say, how much of a difference the late-early / early-late draw is. Look for an analysis in the coming weeks.