Congratulations to Jason Dufner. He’s easy to make fun of, what with his expressionless face, strange twitches and “Dufnering.” But you can’t make fun of that swing. After coming close two years ago, it was good to see him pull one out.
I’m amazed to find that Dufner is thirty-six. Late bloomer. Does he have it in him to win another Major? This year he was t20 at The Masters, t4 at the US Open and t26 at the Open Championship. He was t4 at the Bridgestone. Aside from the US Open and Bridgestone performances, there really isn’t any indication of a guy who could win a Major. Every other start this year ended with him in the middle of the pack.
Dufner certainly strikes the ball well. In a post round interview, though, Dufner indicated that he has struggled with putting. He did all right this week, though.
I feel sorry for Jim Furyk. He strikes me as one of the nicer guys on tour. Furyk has suffered an inordinate amount of professional heartbreak in recent years and I wonder how anyone comes away from that without mental scars. It was noted that he added psychologist Bob Rotella to his entourage this past year. For a man who has had only one coach (his father), a change like that probably indicates he feels something is not quite right. I still think he has another Major in his future.
Question for the readers: Is Jim Furyk a Hall of Fame player? Or does he need another Major to seal that deal?
Lots of writers have questioned the PGA’s status as a Major. “It just doesn’t have that Major feel,” some have said (paraphrasing). Others have effectively (or literally) called it boring. Here’s what I like about the PGA:
1) The strongest field in the Majors. Only professionals here. Even the presence of twenty club pros does not change that.
2) It’s fair. The PGA sets up the course for playing. They’re not trying to protect par with trickery; they don’t take a sadistic pleasure at the slickness of their greens; weather typically is not a deciding factor. When watching the PGA I always feel as though I am watching players play their best on a tough, but reasonable setup. For the most part, I think players can WIN a PGA. That’s not always true at other Majors.
I do think, however, that it wouldn’t hurt the PGA to bring back match play. The 100th anniversary is coming soon. How about this: Match play for the first two days, then the survivors play 36 stroke play holes.
The PGA is also in an awkward position. It’s too close to the Open Championship. And the PGA Tour has squeezed it on the other end with that ridiculous playoff series.
I’ve got another solution. Since the PGA Tour schedule now begins in the fall, the PGA Championship should move to February or March. It could distinguish itself by being the Major that is regularly played on the West Coast—which would put it on prime time for much of the country. We could see lots of classic west coast courses that otherwise don’t get Major consideration.
They could play it at Riviera and finally force Tiger back to that classic design.
The guys on Morning Drive this morning came around to what I’ve been saying for five years. YE Yang’s win five years ago destroyed Tiger’s Mojo. They compared it to a heavyweight champion seeing his own blood for the first time.
I was correct in my prediction this past January. No Majors for Tiger this year. No Majors for him next year, either.