Well Hello There 2017, I See You Coming…
I’ve been so bad at my annual predictions on this site that I hesitate to even attempt them again. Why bother? I’ll pick some big tournament winners, none of them will come true, and everything else I say will only give us something to laugh at by this time next year. I guess that’s worth it. Here we go.
Go West Young Man
The Tour is underway in Maui as I type this. The sights are glorious and the golf is fun, but we’re not going to care who wins. They’ll likely be first in the Fed Ex points for a week or so but who gives a shit? The West Coast swing truly starts when the big boys show up on the mainland. I’ll call some ho-hum winners for the T of C, the Sony, and the Hope, and then things get interesting at Torrey Pines when Jason Day takes his 2nd Farmers in 2 years.
In Phoenix we get a Bubba Watson/Justin Thomas showdown that ends in Bubba crying while Thomas gets the big check and big prize. Thomas is playing his ass off and is long over due for a PGA Tour win in his home hemisphere. At Pebble we get Jimmy Walker holding off Dustin Johnson while using a 35 inch driver. And then, playing his 3rd event of the season, we finally see Tiger Woods contend at Rivieria but not win. He’ll lose by two to Jordan Spieth and golf Twitter will lose its fucking mind on Sunday.
Running Up To The Masters
The WGC event that starts the Florida Swing will be played in…..Mexico? What the fuck? There’s no telling who wins on a new course. This smells like a Jason Dufner/Daniel Berger showdown and Berger gets the better of Duf-daddy. We’re right back in the WGC saddle and back in Austin for the Match Play Championship that will be won by Ryan Moore after he beats Rafael Cabrera Bello in the final match.
That music can only mean one thing, we’re getting close to Augusta. We’re already under 100 days to the first major of 2017. The buzz in Augusta will be about Spieth bouncing back from his 2016 collapse and if Rory can complete the career Grand Slam. Don’t count on either happening. With strep throat, allergies, a bad back, and a hang nail, Jason Day wins his 2nd major and first green jacket.
As the Tour moves on from the Masters, I’ll spare you the trouble of contemplating who wins anything between the Masters and the Players with one exception, the Zurich. Why’s that you ask? The Zurich announced in November that it will be a team format. 1st round alternate shot, 2nd round four ball. 80 teams cut to 35. No non-members outside some sponsor’s exemptions. To get to 35 teams there will be a playoff if necessary. I’m in!
Back to alternate shot for Saturday and 4-ball again Sunday with birdies galore. Winners takes all and the team splits the money and Fed Ex points. That’s fucking fantastic. When this was announced the bro-mances flared up all over social media. Rickie and JDay are in, Keegan Bradley will play with Brendan Steele, and gold medal winner Justin Rose will play with silver medalist Henrik Stenson. They’re the champs, book it.
The Players should be glorious and fun, there’s been a few tweaks to the course, one of which is making the short par four 12th hole drive-able. That only means someone like Jim Furyk will win to be Buzz Killington.
At the Memorial Tiger Woods is back in contention, but he fails to win again and Kevin Na of all people stands next to Jack with the trophy on Sunday. Between Na and Furyk winning I already hate 2017. Tiger’s fine play ramps up his status as a favorite at the U.S. Open at Erin Hills, but then he misses the cut after revealing that Khloe’ Kardashian is his new girlfriend. I just threw up in my mouth.
Outside of who Tiger is fucking, the story at the Open becomes the golf course. Erin Hills is majestic, but Mother Nature has other ideas and nearly rains the championship out. Instead of giving the field a firm and bumpy track the USGA has to let them play lift, clean and place. Rory shoots 14 under and wins by 6. He loves soggy turf and his nuptials are 2 months in his review mirror. Life is good for Rors.
The Home Stretch
You want to know where Big Cat gets his 1st win in his comeback? West fucking Virginia. You heard it here first. TW wins the Jim Justice Open at Greenbrier and the world barely takes notice thanks to the big 4th of July holiday blowouts. Once everyone wakes up from barbecue comas and notices he won the money in Vegas comes in hand over fist for him to win the British Open.
And then he misses the cut for the 2nd time in three 2017 majors. Poor Tiger. Who’s the winner? I see a 3 man playoff including Tommy Fleetwood, Paul Casey, and Sergio Garcia. I’d like to give Garcia an early wedding present (he announced his plans to get married this year today) but he’s too snake bit to ever get a major. This one goes to Casey. He finished 2016 strong. 2017 will be pretty quiet for him until he peaks at Royal Birkdale.
But hey, good for Garcia that he finally found a girl to marry. She must remind him of Jose Maria.
In Akron at Firestone Tiger is finally back in a WGC field thanks to his Greenbrier win. He wins by 5 and 9,568 golf publications declare he’s back. He finally makes the cut again at a major when the PGA is held at Quail Hollow but never finds his name on the first page of the leaderboard. Instead North Carolina guys like Webb Simpson and Bill Haas scare us by nearly winning until the dust settles and Patrick Reed is the last man standing.
In the Fed Ex events I’ll take Rory, Snedeker, Dustin Johnson, and Spieth as the winners, but with no one watching the Tour finally announces it’s not-so-secret plans on moving the Fed Ex events to August, the PGA to May, and the Players back to March.
The President’s Cup ends the season for all intents and purposes at Liberty National in the NYC area. Phil Mickelson misses making the team automatically and asks not to be picked for the team. Bitch Tits then replaces Woods as a vice captain as Woods makes the team and plays. He pairs with Reed to go 4-0-1 but the U.S. continues their streak of losing team events in which Tiger is a part of. Bummer.