The past few trips around the clock have been busy days and long nights for The Mouth That Roars and I haven’t been able to fully think or comment on what happened at the 2011 PGA Championship. That means it’s time for another round of quick hits….
~ I think we need to start redefining who we consider a no-name and a star on tour. Keegan Bradley is not a no-name. He won a strong tour event earlier this season, he contended at the World Golf Championship event the week prior and he’s the nephew of a hall-of-famer. If people tuning in Sunday had never heard of him, they probably don’t follow golf that close. That doesn’t make Bradley a no-namer.
~ Bradley was a major championship rookie though and I can’t imagine being able to show up and win the first major you’ve ever teed it up in. Kudos times a million to Bradley who seems to have the head, skill and guts to win more than one or two of these things.
~ Another note on Bradley, I don’t think he choked at all during the back 9 Sunday. He hit his shot on the 15th a bit long and had a devilish chip shot back down the hill. From all accounts, the lie was a bit beyond penal. The ball came out a bit differently than he expected, it rolled in the water and he carded a triple. Then, he went on to play three of the toughest closing holes you can find in two-under par. Only to play them again in one-under par during the playoff. Choking isn’t hitting a tough shot poorly and instantly charging back…choking would have occurred had Bradley blown up after the triple and tried to hide in the lake on 18.
~ Jason Dufner’s a tough guy to figure out. He shows no emotion and it was hard to tell if he was upset or mildly content after he lost in the playoff. The guy leaked shots over the closing stretch but also found ways to par and birdie 18 over the two times he played it Sunday. An odd fellow…I wonder if we’ll ever see him again on an important Sunday afternoon.
~ Mo Golf wrote a heck of an article on the closing stretch at Atlantic Athletic Club and how it enters itself into a huge debate about golf architecture. I’m not as knowledgeable or as well-versed in the subject as Mo, but I didn’t like what some of those holes did to players. I love seeing players struggle and have to battle for pars, but the 18th hole seemed a bit ridiculous. Guys were throwing two balls in the water. That shouldn’t happen to pros at that level. We also don’t need 240+ Par 3’s. It takes a bit of creativity out of the game.
~ Another year, another zero for Sergio Garcia in major wins. He did make all four cuts though and had the second or third best cumulative score of anyone who achieved that feat. His day is still coming – I believe that.
~ Do fans care about the FEDEX Playoffs? I ask that honestly. I can’t get excited for them anymore than I’d be excited for a ho-hum tour event in February. They’re might lucrative, but does winning them mean anything more than a big check?
~ Still can’t erase the memory of watching Patrick Rodgers charge from 8-shots back on the closing 9 at Niagara Falls Country Club during the Porter Cup earlier this summer from my brain. One of the most impressive stretches of golf I’ve seen. I look forward to following his amateur and professional career.
That’s all I got guys. Keep trying to hit them straight.