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Thursday, March 31, 2022

This Move Sounds Familiar...

When I saw this video from Russell Heritage describing how your lead hip moves in the downswing, I was struck at how much it sounded like the classic instruction to straighten your lead leg. The drill he uses to teach this move is a little extreme -- he does say you need to adjust it to fit your abilities -- but most drills do exaggerate the feel they're trying to teach, expecting your actual move to be a bit less dramatic. To me it seems a great way to learn proper rotation that maintains your spine angle AND creates forward shaft lean without excess hand manipulation. Give it a try and see what you think!


Wednesday, March 30, 2022

The Ladies Take Center Stage

Two big women's tournaments this week, folks. Let's take a quick look.

Defending champion Patty Tavatanakit

First, the pros: The Chevron Championship is the first major of the year and Patty Tavatanakit is the defending champion. This is the last year for Rancho Mirage to host the event, the last time for the winner to leap into Poppy's Pond. There will be a mixture of emotions for players -- and fans -- as the week goes on.

GC's live coverage runs twice Thursday -- once from noon-4pm ET and then again from 7-9pm ET. (Remember: Rancho Mirage is in California and that means prime time golf.)

But that's not all. The amateurs are also teeing it up this weekend for the third Augusta National Women’s Amateur at -- where else? -- Augusta National. Well, the last day is at Augusta; the first two days are at Champions Retreat Golf Club. Then the girls get a practice round at Augusta on Friday and then the final round on Saturday.

GC's coverage of the ANWA is a bit weird. Thursday night you can watch from 6:15-8pm ET. The main coverage is on Saturday from 10am-noon ET on GC, then switches to NBC from noon-3:30pm ET.

My best advice is to keep checking at this GC link because it has all the times for both the Chevron and the ANWA, as well as giving links for the streams where you can catch both events.

Big events this weekend, folks. You don't want to miss them.

Tuesday, March 29, 2022

Twofer Tuesday: Valero Texas Open

Twofer Tuesday blows into San Antonio for the 100th edition of the Valero Texas Open.

Defending champion Jordan Spieth

And you might be surprised to learn that the Valero has ALWAYS been played in San Antonio, all 100 editions of it. TPC San Antonio’s Oaks Course is hosting the event for the 12th straight time and, if the winner isn't already in the Masters field, he'll pick up the last invite.

Of course, defending champion Jordan Spieth doesn't have to worry about that.

After last week's glorious performance by my Twofer Tuesday picks, I can't expect to be so lucky again. But that doesn't stop me from dreaming...

  • My first pick is Corey Conners. Corey Monday qualified at TPC San Antonio back in 2019 and calmly won the thing to get his first invite to Augusta. After finishing 3rd at the WGC Match Play last week, I'm hoping he'll show that winning form again this year.
  • And my other pick is Charley Hoffman. I admit I'm playing the odds this week but who could blame me? Charley has played this course 11 times and finished in the Top15 nine of them! Those finishes include a win in 2016, three runner-ups (one in 2019 and one last year) and a T3. If the event's leading money winner isn't a good bet, who is?

GC's live coverage starts Thursday at 4pm ET. The schedule for PGA TOUR LIVE's streaming coverage can be found at this link. And hopefully I can lasso myself another winner this week.

Monday, March 28, 2022

The Limerick Summary: 2022 WGC-Dell Match Play

Winner: Scottie Scheffler

Around the wider world of golf: We had a number of first time winners this week -- Chad Ramey at the Corales Puntacana Championship, the PGA Tour's alternate field event; Atthaya Thitikul at the LPGA's JTBC Classic; Ewen Ferguson at the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters on the DP World Tour; Trevor Werbylo at the Lake Charles Championship on the Korn Ferry Tour; Nitithorn Thippong at the DGC Open on the Asian tour; and Kevin Velo at the Termas de Rio Hondo Invitational on the PGA TOUR Latinoamérica. In addition, Clement Sordet won the SDC Open on the Sunshine Tour; Linnea Strom won the IOA Championship on the Epson Tour; and Mao Saigo won the JLPGA's rain-shortened AXA Ladies Golf Tournament. [Thanks, IC!]

Scottie Scheffler with the Walter Hagen Cup

FINALLY, A WINNER! My Twofer Tuesday picks showed up this week. Remember, I picked four players this time -- in an effort to pick the Final Four -- and only the players who made it out of pool play are considered to have 'made the cut.' I had Dustin Johnson (4), Paul Casey (MC), Jordan Spieth (MC) and Scottie Scheffler (1). Casey gets a pass because health problems took him out. As for the others, I'll take this kind of showing any time!

  • Top10s: 12 for 46 (8 Top5, 4 Top10)
  • Winners: 1 for 22
  • Top20s: 21 for 46

This year's edition of the Dell Match Play turned out to be a real nailbiter. Ultimately the best players did make it to the top and Sunday's matches didn't disappoint. (Unless you were rooting for the players who didn't get the Walter Hagen Cup.)

In the semifinals -- what I've been calling the Final Four -- Scottie Scheffler took down Dustin Johnson after DJ put on a late run to cut his 5up lead to only 1up before Scheffler put an end to it 3&1; and Kevin Kisner took down Corey Conners 2up. I think most of us expected this result, although we wouldn't have been too shocked if the winners had been reversed.

But the Finals and Consolation matches were a bit of a surprise. Conners took DJ rather easily 3&1 while Scheffler took Kisner 4&3. The winners weren't so surprising -- you could make solid arguments that Conners and Scheffler were playing better than anyone else this week -- but I guess we have to accept the fact that all the players just seem so tired in their final matches. The Match Play is a long week!

I suppose the biggest news out of this event is that Corey Conners appears to be on the verge of breaking out and that Scottie Scheffler has risen to World #1 in just about a month-and-a-half.  We'll have plenty of time to revisit these two as the Masters is almost upon us. In the meantime, I'll just congratulate Corey for an excellent Match Play and present Scottie with the winner's customary award, the Limerick Summary.

The Kiz almost got the job done.
His opponents fell hard in his run
To the top… except Scottie,
Whose match play karate
Made him the new World Number One!

The photo came from this page at centralmaine.com.

Sunday, March 27, 2022

5-Wood VS 3-Wood: Which Is Better? (Video)

Matt from MrShortGame has a problem. He likes both his 3-wood and 5-wood but will have to carry 15 clubs if he keeps both in the bag. Which should he keep? It's an interesting process he goes through to decide.

Just for the record, I might try a driver-length shaft in the 3-wood (leaving out the driver) and then put in a 7-wood (my fave club) with a 3-wood shaft. To each his own...


Saturday, March 26, 2022

Let's See How My Picks Are Doing...

Alright, we're past the pool play portion of the WGC-Dell Match Play. Let's see how many of my picks are still alive for the Round of 16. Remember, I picked one player from each of the four 'regions' of the bracket because the Final Four has one player from each of them.

The Walter Hagen Cup

Actually, I didn't do too bad this year.

  • Rahm region: Dustin Johnson. DJ went 3-0-0 in pool play, which I totally did NOT expect although I thought he was in good enough form to make it out. He plays Richard Bland in the Round of 16, which is a cool story all on its own.
  • Morikawa region: Paul Casey. Maybe I'm just bad luck for Casey. Back spasms caused him to concede all three matches so he ended up 0-3-0. I hope he heals up in time for the Masters.
  • Hovland region: Jordan Spieth. I was just asking too much of Jordan this time. Even with the crowd behind him, the best he could do was 1-2-0 in pool play. Not much to say about that.
  • Cantlay region: Scottie Scheffler. Scheffler went 2-1-0, which was about what I hoped for when I picked him. Scheffler gets a chance to avenge his runner-up finish from last year -- he gets defending champ Billy Horschel in the Round of 16..

So two of my picks made it through pool play. It's rare that I do that well, although I'm still a bit disappointed. DJ and Scheffler are on the same side of the bracket, which means -- if they both make it through -- they'll meet up in the Final Four rather than the Finals. And that means -- again, if they both make it that far -- I'll only have one chance to get the winner rather than two.

Still, match play is a fickle mistress. At least I've still got a couple of dogs in the fight!

Friday, March 25, 2022

Fairway Bunkers and the 50-Yard Bunker Shot (Video)

Paige Spiranac has some bunker advice for you. Her fairway bunker tips may already be familiar to you... but Paige got her 50-yard bunker tips from Gary Player so you better listen up!


Thursday, March 24, 2022

Rick Shiels VS Sir Nick Faldo in Match Play (Video)

Since this is WGC-Dell Match Play week, I just thought this would be a fun watch. Rick Shiels takes on Sir Nick Faldo in four holes of match play at Cruden Bay Golf Club in Scotland.


Wednesday, March 23, 2022

The Kia Classic Has a New Name

This year it becomes the JTBC Classic, but it's still at Aviara Golf Club in Carlsbad CA.

Defending champion Inbee Park

The girls are back in California to get their season underway in earnest after three events in Florida, a short break, two events in Asia and another brief break. While this may sound like a problem, this pattern of short runs with breaks in-between may help the LPGA keep stronger fields overall in the next few months since players get some time to rest.

While it's easy to write the JTBC Classic off as a minor tournament, it definitely serves as a warmup for the tour's first major of the year, the newly-renamed Chevron Championship (formerly the ANA Inspiration). Eight of the Rolex Top10 are in the field this week -- Jessica Korda is of course resting after that blood clot scare, and Yuka Saso is the other skipping this event.

Inbee Park is the defending champion. Also of interest is Brooke Henderson, who will be putting a 46-inch driver into play for the first time. (The Kia is putting the USGA's new maximum driver length local rule in effect. Brooke normally grips down on a 48-incher.)

GC's live coverage begins Thursday at 6:30pm ET. (California events = prime time coverage.) I admit I'm most interested to see how Brooke fares. I wonder if she'll try counterweighting the grip like Jack Nicklaus did so many years ago?

Tuesday, March 22, 2022

Twofer Tuesday: WGC-Dell Match Play

Twofer Tuesday moseys on down to Austin TX for a few days of match play.

Defending champion Billy Horschel

The WGC-Dell Match Play is one of my favorite events on the PGA Tour. We get 64 players playing a minimum of three rounds -- the winners play seven -- over the course of just five days. Austin Country Club has proven to be a great venue for this event, and... and... well, it's just a load of fun!

Billy Horschel is the defending champion. He'll definitely have his hands full this time around.

For those of you who have never seen me do a Twofer Tuesday for the match play, it's a bit different from normal. Although I'll ultimately tally my results in terms of Top10s, I don't pick two players I think will make that illustrious group.

I pick FOUR.

Since this is a bracketed event, I approach it the same way I would approach March Madness, the NCAA playoffs for college basketball. The Match Play puts the 16 groups of four players into what I'll call four 'regions' of 16 players. (That's how it's done for the NCAA playoffs.) So I'll pick one player from each of those four 'regions' to arrive at my equivalent of the NCAA playoffs' Final Four.

Those Final Four are my Twofer Tuesday picks and, when this is all over, I'll use their finishing positions to get my results. For example, the Final Four in this event get Top4 finishes. Any of the 16 players who make it out of pool play will get a T9 finish.

I'll call my regions by the top seeded player in each. That means I'm picking one each from the Rahm region, the Morikawa region, the Hovland region and the Cantlay region.

Now that you know how I'm doing it, let's make some picks!

  • Rahm region: Dustin Johnson. There are five previous winners in the field and DJ is one of them. He's a strong match players -- he was perfect at the last Ryder Cup -- and he's a great all-around ball striker and scrambler. He's been a bit erratic lately but this is the kind of competition where a few mistakes won't necessarily kill his chances.
  • Morikawa region: Paul Casey. If you've seen my previous Match Play picks you'll know that Casey is often one of my faves in this format. One year I picked him and he made it to Sunday, only to fall victim to a stomach bug that ruined his chances. But he's back on form this year.
  • Hovland region: Jordan Spieth. In my opinion, the toughest region of them all. It's loaded with players that could easily take this one, including two-time champ Kevin Kisner. But while Spieth isn't in the form I'd like, I still think the 'hometown hero' will raise his game in front of the home crowd.
  • Cantlay region: Scottie Scheffler. Scheffler was the runner-up this year and he's been playing like a madman over the last few months. I hate not to take Horschel to repeat, but I can't shake the feeling that this could be Scheffler's year.

GC's live coverage begins WEDNESDAY at 2pm ET. PGA TOUR LIVE will be doing all its regular specialized streams as well; you can see their schedule at the bottom of this page. Let the madness begin!

Monday, March 21, 2022

The Limerick Summary: 2022 Valspar Championship

Winner: Sam Burns

Around the wider world of golf: Shaun Norris won the Steyn City Championship on the DP World Tour; Carl Yuan won the Chitimacha Louisiana Open on the Korn Ferry Tour; Fatima Fernandez Cano won the Carlisle Arizona Women's Golf Classic on the Epson Tour; Harrison Crowe won the Golf Challenge NSW Open on the Australasian Tour; and Kotone Hori won the T-Point x ENEOS Golf Tournament on the JLPGA. [Thanks, IC!]

Sam Burns with Valspar trophy

My Twofer Tuesday picks are beginning to irritate me. Last week I had Justin Thomas and Matt Fitzpatrick, who couldn't even manage Top20s, and this week they were both Top5s. This week I had Louis Oosthuizen (T62) and Viktor Hovland (T33). I'm telling you, my picks are conspiring to play horribly on the weeks I pick them!

  • Top10s: 10 for 42 (6 Top5, 4 Top10s)
  • Winners: 0 for 21
  • Top20s: 19 for 42

The last day of the Valspar didn't disappoint. Things tightened up to the point that only four players had a realistic chance to win... and they were forced to battle it out in the Snake Pit. Justin Thomas, Sam Burns, Davis Riley and Matt NeSmith fought all the way to the end, with Riley having a chance to win outright over Burns after a two-shot swing at 17. They tied the first playoff hole.

Then Burns curled in a 32-foot birdie putt on the 16th to become the second back-to-back winner in a row. (Paul Casey had won the two Valspars before Burns's first win last year.)

I usually put a photo of the winner with the trophy at the top of these posts so I put the customary photo of Burns with the trophy up top. But we all know what the money shot was, don't we?

Sam Burns reacts to winning putt in playoff

As Burns told espn.com, "All through today, just trying to make sure that I never got too high or too low and just tried to stay even-keeled. And to see that go in, I mean, that's just what I felt." That, of course, being the moment caught in the photo above.

And THAT'S a photo worthy of a Limerick Summary! Congratulation, Sam!

Sam tried to just keep it all real
As he watched that long putt start to peel
‘Round the cup for the win…
But to win here again?
We’ll forgive him for wanting to squeal.

The photos came from these pages at golfweek.usatoday.com and golf.com.

Sunday, March 20, 2022

Internet Problems

This hasn't been a good week for our internet service. It went down late Wednesday night in the middle of posting for Thursday so I had to finish on Thursday morning, and yesterday the internet, cable and phones all went down in the middle of the day and were out until this morning (presumably due to the high winds we've been experiencing). Hopefully everything will work well when I post the Limerick Summary tonight. Hope all of you have a good day!

Saturday, March 19, 2022

Can a Golf Ball Guarantee a Specific Score? (Video)

Wilson claims their new Triad golf ball can help you break 80. Can it? Rick Shiels decided to test its claims and see if it lives up to them. Let's watch...


Friday, March 18, 2022

Two Ways to Play from Hardpan and Wood Chips Around the Green (Video)

Matt over at the MrShortGame channel has two different ways you can play shots around the green from hardpan. He says these shots also work from wood chips and mulch around the green, so this is a pretty good lesson. I would say his primary key to both of these shots is your weight distribution, as almost all short game shots require you to keep your weight a bit more on your lead foot to prevent reverse pivots and sways that result in mis-hits.

One interesting tip from this video: Matt says that, if you are in doubt about how to play a trouble shot around the green, you'll probably get a usable result if you just play the shot like a bunker shot. That one piece of advice might save you some heartache during a round!


Thursday, March 17, 2022

I Think I Predicted This...

Back on February 2 I posted a piece called The Asian Tour Makes Things Interesting. In that post I said that LIV Golf's investment in the Asian Tour was possibly just the beginning of problems for the PGA and DP World Tours because it gave LIV a foothold in an existing tour and they could build from that.

Now the other shoe has dropped, and it appears that LIV Golf is even smarter than I expected.

Greg Norman announces the LIV Golf Invitational Series

With the announcement of the LIV Golf Invitational Series -- 8 team events with huge purses plus bonuses for the top players and teams during the season -- it's pretty clear that this is how LIV Golf decided to force the issue. And I have to say it's a brilliant move.

It's only a slight change from their original goal of a separate league of 10 team events with $25mil purses each, and this is almost exactly the rumored amount of their investment in the Asian Tour ($300mil). But why do I say it's brilliant? Because the golf community at large still doesn't understand what has happened.

Here's what GC said about the new series:

According to a release from LIV Golf, the Saudi-backed investment fund behind the super league, the schedule will feature 54-hole, no-cut events with both an individual and team component. The 48-man fields will be split into four 12-man teams. The schedule will include $250 million in purses with $20 million earmarked for each event’s individual component. An additional $5 million will be awarded amongst the top 3 teams at each event.

On the surface it gives LIV a framework for most of the events they wanted -- I suspect there are only 8 events at this point (and their championship event is without a venue yet) simply because many of the courses LIV would like to play don't want to incur the wrath of the 'big tours' and possibly lose their chances at a major or WGC. But it does much more.

Think about this. While the current line of thought is that they don't have fields for those events, they do. Just as the Rolex Series is only a portion of the DP World Tour and, while they invite pros from other leagues to participate, most of their fields come from the DP World itself.

Even if no PGA or DP World Tour players join them, the LIV Golf Invitational Series will fill its field with players from the Asian Tour because it's merely a portion of the Asian Tour now. And that's the brilliance of it all.

You see, it doesn't matter whether other pros come or not. LIV Golf has established themselves within an existing tour and needs only to put up money and find venues on which to play. Bear in mind that they have already found one venue in England and three in America, plus three other worldwide venues. One of those venues is Trump National Golf Club Bedminster, which would have hosted a PGA Championship this year except for that little incident in Washington DC last January. Trump and the PGA Tour -- and the DP World Tour for that matter -- haven't gotten along for several years, so it's no surprise to see this deal.

Just as a sidebar to this, I wouldn't be surprised if LIV Golf eventually ended up with their final event at either Trump National Los Angeles or at Trump Turnberry, both of which have been involved in spats between Trump and the tours.

At any rate, the LIV Golf Invitational Series will be played -- it's part of the regular Asian Tour schedule, after all -- with just Asian Tour players if no one else joins them. That will be okay with LIV Golf because they're playing the long game here. If they can continue to support this series for a few years, the other tours will have to deal with a couple of potential problems I didn't bring up in my original post. Now they appear inevitable.

  1. I suspect most of the top players believe they can beat most Asian Tour players any day of the week -- after all, they'd be playing the US and European Tours (for bigger purses) if they were good enough. But what happens when the biggest names in golf realize that those 'lesser players' are making far more money they are... and doing so on an easier schedule? No matter how well the 'big tours' are doing, it's going to be difficult to match those purses week after week.
  2. And then there's the issue of players from the Asian Tour who do want to play in the West. Will their tenure on a LIV Golf-supported tour be held against them? Or will the money prove too seductive and persuade them to stay where they are, perhaps depriving established tours of upcoming players like Hideki Matsuyama once was?

These are issues the tours will now have to deal with, and those choices could completely reshape the world golf scene and affect future talent.

However, I do think that Greg Norman and LIV Golf are fooling themselves if they think any court will overthrow the existing tours' right to ban players for playing elsewhere. Tour players may consider themselves 'independent contractors' but they are STILL contractors and, while they have some freedom to choose when and where they work, they can only work at these places because they have that contract. And that contract sets conditions for work to which both have agreed, which includes for whom they are allowed to work. Functionally, they are a type of employee. And to my knowledge there are NO businesses which allow their employees to work the same job for their direct competitors.

If the courts were to rule that these contracts are invalid, they would set a precedent that would ripple throughout the business world, invalidating long accepted contracts and disrupting the world's economy at a time when such an action would be an irresponsible act. I just don't see it happening.

But it's become clear that LIV Golf truly is playing the long game here. And with the world still reeling from a pandemic, with no idea what the future may hold, that game is likely to be a very uneasy one for all involved.

Wednesday, March 16, 2022

Twofer Tuesday: Valspar Championship

Twofer Tuesday ends its long weekend at Ponte Vedra for the two-hour drive north to Palm Harbor (just north of Tampa) and the Valspar Championship.

Defending champion Sam Burns

The Copperhead Course at Innisbrook is notorious for the Snake Pit -- and not just because of that ridiculously huge snake sculpture on the 16th tee. Last year Sam Burns escaped its fangs en route to his first PGA Tour win. But the pros seem to like the course despite the Snake Pit and it will be interesting to see how they hold up after the long weekend at TPC Sawgrass. I don't think I'd want to tackle the Copperhead Course without A LOT of time to practice!

So who will I pick this week to kill the Copperhead? That's an especially valid question this week as I planned to make Paul Casey one of my picks but he withdrew on Tuesday. To be honest, I have a lot of players I like this week but can only pick two.

  • My first pick is Louis Oosthuizen. This course is one that he seems to play consistently well and, while he hasn't played all that well lately, I think this could be a good place for him to recapture some of his mojo.
  • And my other pick is Viktor Hovland. Look, this is only Viktor's second time at the Copperhead -- he finished T3 last year -- so it's hard to believe that he could do well here again with virtually no experience and virtually no time to practice. Therefore I think he may shock everybody and win. Wouldn't be the first time!

GC's live coverage begins Thursday at 2pm ET and, as usual, PGA TOUR LIVE is running a bunch of specialized streams that are listed at this link. The weather forecast is for warm and overcast conditions. Does that mean the guys will play better this week? I don't know but I'm excited to find out.

Tuesday, March 15, 2022

The Limerick Summary: 2022 THE PLAYERS

Winner: Cameron Smith

Around the wider world of golf: THE PLAYERS sucked all the air out of the room for golf this week. Nanna Koerstz Madsen got her first LPGA win at the Honda LPGA Thailand; and Pablo Larrazábal won the MyGolfLife Open on the DP World Tour. [UPDATE: Mao Saigo won the JLPGA's Daikin Orchid Ladies Golf Tournament; and Pei Ying Tsai won the Meiji Yasuda Life Insurance Ladies Yokohama Tire Golf Tournament, also on the JLPGA. Thanks, IC!]

Cameron Smith with PLAYERS trophy

At least my Twofer Tuesday picks have an excuse this week: weather. My picks were Justin Thomas (T33) and Matt Fitzpatrick (MC). Both landed on the wrong side of the draw but, ironically, JT shot his best score the day he had the worst weather. Go figure...

  • Top10s: 10 for 40 (6 Top5, 4 Top10s)
  • Winners: 0 for 20
  • Top20s: 19 for 40

All kinds of records were set at THE PLAYERS this week, and most of them bad. Things like taking over 80 hours to play the first round. Most of the big name players seem to have been on the wrong side of the draw and spent their delayed weekends heading for the Copperhead Course this week. But that didn't stop Monday's final round from being a nail-biter.

In the end it came down to Paul Casey, Cameron Smith, Keegan Bradley and Anirban Lahiri.

  • Casey dropped out first when a bad break on the 16th and a poor shot on the 17th resulted in pars; not enough to keep up.
  • Bradley fell out next with a bogey on 17 and a double on 18.
  • Smith went birdie/bogey on 17 and 18 to post in the clubhouse.
  • And Lahiri came to the 18th with a birdie chip to tie if he made it, but it slipped by.

And so Cam Smith joined the short list of multiple winners this season, jumping to second on the FedExCup points list.

It's true that Cam got lucky with the draw and that he plays TPC Sawgrass pretty often, but that's not enough to take home a trophy at THE PLAYERS. You can't deny that he simply schooled the other players down the stretch, letting them know that they had to play a lot better if they wanted to beat him. 

Especially if they wanted to lay their hands on a genuine Limerick Summary. Guys get downright feisty when one of those is on the line!

You can argue he had the best draw.
You can argue he plays lots at Saw-
Grass… and no doubt you’re right.
But on this Monday night
Cam Smith came and laid down the law!

The photo came from this page at golfweek.usatoday.com.

Monday, March 14, 2022

Chipping from Muddy Wet Lies (Video)

The first 90 seconds is an ad but I think the video is worth sitting through it. This video covers the three major things (and a handful of small details) you need to do to get the ball out of a nasty wet clumpy lie. It's the kind of instruction you can't hear often enough. The video is less than ten minutes so have at it!


Sunday, March 13, 2022

How Much Does Cold and Wind Affect Distance? (Videos)

Two videos today. The first is Justin Thomas's interview with Mike Tirico right after his round about how much the wind and cold affected his shots.


Clearly he had to make some serious guesses about how much the weather was affecting his shots, and he must have had some idea how much to adjust. But how do you get that knowledge? This video from Dan Whittaker might help. He's using a TrackMan and the iron he typically hits 155 yards to determine how much temperature and wind can affect shots. He tries several times so pay attention to the results he gets.


So it appears that the weather can easily take up to 20% of your normal distance off your shots. It's definitely something you'll want to take into account if you're playing in the cold and wind.

Saturday, March 12, 2022

Some Basic Rain Tips (Video)

Since THE PLAYERS is dealing with a lot of rain, let's take some time this weekend to learn some wet weather tricks. Today we'll start with some very basic stuff from Martin Hall and Blair O'Neal... but that doesn't mean you can ignore it. When things get too wet, the game gets too hard!


Friday, March 11, 2022

How a Proper Grip Helps Prevent Shoulder Pain (Video)

In this video Mike Malaska is helping PGA/LPGA instructor Cathy Kim work through a shoulder injury by tweaking her grip. Pay special attention to the drill he gives her in the second half of the video to teach her proper hand action -- it's much simpler than you might expect!


Thursday, March 10, 2022

The Honda LPGA Thailand Is Underway

I forgot that the LPGA event began on Wednesday night because of the time change between the US and Thailand.

Defending champion Ariya Jutanugarn

Ariya Jutanugarn is the defending champion in Thailand, and you have a couple of ways to watch the event here in the US.

  • You can catch the Honda LPGA Thailand streaming on GC's Live Stream starting at 10pm ET Wednesday and Thursday, and at 10:30pm ET on Friday and Saturday. Look for the ON NOW box with the little Live Stream Only symbol in the listing and click that program.
  • GC's main channel begins coverage at 1am ET on Wednesday and Thursday, and at 1:30am ET on Friday and Saturday.

I'm actually watching the stream as I write this post and the action looks pretty good. With THE PLAYERS taking up so much broadcast time, there aren't as many opportunities to watch the LPGA this week otherwise.

Wednesday, March 9, 2022

A New Link for You to Check Out

Among the other things that are occupying my time right now I'm slowly trying to update my site -- at least, I'd like to get rid of some of the dead links and streamline things a bit.

As part of this I'll be adding some new links and the first one is a link to a new (to me) equipment site called Daily Golf Steals. David Paxton, who operates the site, and I have been talking for a handful of months now and we're looking to do some things together. But for now I just wanted to introduce you to his site.

Daily Golf Steals header

Daily Golf Steals offers a large number of coupons for new and used golf equipment, apparel and accessories as well as links to the sites where the deals are available and instructions on how to collect on the coupons. The site seems well organized and I like how easy it is to navigate.

Plus there are nearly 2000 deals on the site. I think that gives you a pretty good selection!

As I said, David and I are exploring some possible things we can do together going forward. But that doesn't mean you have to wait before you head over and check out the site! The link to the site is currently in the sidebar under the heading NEW GOLF LINKS, down where the sidebar splits in two. And of course you can get there using any of the Daily Golf Steals links in this post.

So be sure to welcome David to my site by giving his a visit. I think you'll enjoy browsing through it.

Tuesday, March 8, 2022

Twofer Tuesday: THE PLAYERS

Twofer Tuesday makes its way to Ponte Vedra Beach FL and Pete Dye's diabolical TPC Sawgrass for THE PLAYERS, which, whether it's officially recognized as such or not, is the first major of the year.

Defending champion Justin Thomas

At a mere 7256 yards and a par of 72, the Stadium Course has become one of the most respected courses on the PGA Tour. It plays no favorites, giving no particular playing style an advantage. Any player can win THE PLAYERS provided he can play every shot in the bag when he needs it.

Because of that, THE PLAYERS routinely boasts the strongest field of any event all year.

If the weather reports play out as predicted, players will see a 20°F temperature change and just about every kind of weather except snow over the next few days. This week's winner will definitely have earned the title!

Yesterday I said I would explain the extra stat for the picks in my Limerick Summary so here it is:

Most of you are aware that in the middle of the week Golf Today does a gambling segment with Teddy G from PointsBet, where they talk about the previous week's picks and some possibly good picks for the upcoming tournament. As I was listening last week I realized that a lot of the bets concerned Top20s, so I decided to start seeing how my Top10 picks did as Top20s. Thus far in the season my picks have had NEARLY TWICE as many Top20s as Top10s!

As a result, although I'm not changing my methods for picking, I'll be adding the Top20 finishers stat to my picks each week... and, for you betters out there, you might want to start watching how your own picks are doing in the Top20 as well. Maybe you'll learn something helpful.

Anyway, let's make a couple of picks for THE PLAYERS and see if I can maybe pick a winner this time around.

  • My first pick is Justin Thomas. I have no other reason than he's the defending champion. He's been playing well but just hasn't managed to pick up a win this season. Maybe this week will be the one.
  • My other pick is Matt Fitzpatrick. He's on the verge of winning his first PGA Tour event -- I can feel it in my bones. (At least that's what I think it is. I suppose it could just be age.) At any rate this is the kind of course where he should excel.

GC's live coverage begins Thursday at noon ET. And PGA TOUR LIVE runs their normal array of featured group and featured hole streams, which are listed at the bottom of the page at this link. THE PLAYERS is always fun to watch because so many players have a chance to win. This week should be no different!

Monday, March 7, 2022

The Limerick Summary: 2022 Arnold Palmer Invitational

Winner: Scottie Scheffler

Around the greater world of golf: Ryan Brehm needed a win to keep his Tour card and he won the Puerto Rico Open (the PGA Tour alternate field event) by six shots to get it; Jin Young Ko got her sixth win in ten starts at the HSBC Women's World Championship on the LPGA; Ashun Wu won the Magical Kenya Open on the DP World Tour; Oliver Hundebøll won the Mangaung Open on the Sunshine Tour; Retief Goosen won the Hoag Classic on the Champions Tour; Jarryd Felton won the TPS Sydney on the Australasian Tour; Kum-Kang Park won the Florida’s Natural Charity Classic on the Epson Tour; Sihwan Kim won the International Series Thailand on the Asian Tour; and Wake Forest won the team event and Carolina Lopez-Chacarra won the individual title at the NCAA's Darius Rucker Intercollegiate.

Scottie Scheffler with API trophy and red sweater

Not so bad for my Twofer Tuesday picks this week. My picks were Rory McIlroy (T13) and Matt Fitzpatrick (T9). Rory fell back on Sunday but Matt held on for a Top10.

  • Top10s: 10 for 38 (6 Top5, 4 Top10s)
  • Winners: 0 for 19

This week I'm adding a Top20 picks to my stats. I'll explain why in tomorrow's Twofer Tuesday post. For now I'll just say it won't change how I make picks.

  • Top20s: 19 for 38

Rory wasn't the only player who struggled on Sunday. The field's scoring average wasn't as bad as last year but 2021 was the only Sunday that was worse. And apparently the scoring for the week was the worst in 40 years. Earlier in the week the winning score looked to be around -10 but it finished at half that.

And Scottie Scheffler made that with an even par round on Sunday.

I won't go into much detail here because, if you saw the event, you know it was basically a few amazing shots interspersed between a lot of bogeys and worse. Bay Hill dried out under all the wind and made precision shotmaking more a matter of luck than skill. The men who still contended when they reached the 18th did so by pure mental toughness because it was the kind of golf that grinds your mind to mush.

Scottie's win was unexpected because he began the day 8 shots back. Just think -- all it took from him was an even-par round. That's a tough course!

This gives Scottie his second Tour win -- and second Limerick Summary -- in only three starts. I guess the floodgates may really be opening for him!

His second Tour win in three tries
Caught most of the field by surprise.
For Scottie to do it
At Bay Hill, where wind blew its
Worst, was a shock to those guys!

The photo came from this page at pgatour.com.

Sunday, March 6, 2022

Paige's Putting Basics (Video)

This is basically a summary of how Paige Spriranac approaches putting, whether she's in close or far away from the hole. I like it because she deals with the intangibles of putting -- things like dealing with pressure, developing a consistent tempo and finding useful drills. While everybody approaches putting a bit differently, there's a good chance you'll find some strategic info here that will help your game.


Saturday, March 5, 2022

Learning to Control Your Drives (Video)

Mike Malaska has some suggestions on how you can learn to shape shots with your driver. (They should work with other clubs as well.) While there are many things you can learn from this video, here's one practice tip I want to make sure you don't miss: When you practice shaping shots, DON'T worry about distance. You can work on hitting shots farther after you learn how to create them, but your focus should first be on creating the shot shape you want when you want it!


Friday, March 4, 2022

Still More Golf to Watch!

After you've watched the 2nd round of the DP World Tour's Magical Kenya Open this morning (Friday) from 5am-10am ET, and then you've vegged out watching all the other golf events today, you can catch the Champions Tour's Hoag Classic (back after missing last year) at 6pm ET tonight. Ernie Els is the defending champ from 2020. So much golf to squeeze into one weekend!

2020 defending champion Ernie Els

Thursday, March 3, 2022

Just a Reminder...

GC is going to broadcast the PGA Tour's alternate event, the Puerto Rico Open, starting today (Thursday) at 10am ET. But if you want to see defending champion Branden Grace you'll have to tune in to the Arnold Palmer Invitational because that's where he'll be teeing it up today.

Defending champion Branden Grace

Wednesday, March 2, 2022

The Ladies Return in Singapore

The LPGA took a brief break after their own Florida Swing but now they're back in action, beginning with the first of two Asian stops, the HSBC Women's World Championship in Singapore.

Defending champion Hyo Joo Kim

This event is often referred to as 'Asia's Major' and one look at the list of past champions certainly backs that up. None of them was an unknown; most already had stellar reputations, starting with Lorena Ochoa's win at the inaugural event and followed by players like Karrie Webb, Stacy Lewis, Michelle Wie West and two-time champion InBee Park. Hyo Joo Kim is the defending champion.

And perhaps the hottest player in this week's field is Hannah Green, who just won back-to-back victories in Australia -- which included the first time a woman has beaten the men in a mixed event. Hannah was runner-up last year, so all eyes will definitely be on her.

She won't be alone, of course. Expect eight of the Top10 Rolex players to put their skills on display.

GC's live coverage begins tonight (Wednesday) at 9:30pm ET and lasts for around five hours. It's gonna be great to see a strong field back in action at a prestigious event like this!

Tuesday, March 1, 2022

Twofer Tuesday: API

Twofer Tuesday makes the drive north to Arnie's Place and the Arnold Palmer Invitational.

Defending champion Bryson DeChambeau

Ah, Bay Hill. Legendary land of Palmer pride. What can you say about the course that hasn't already been said? We always get good events there... and good champions. Bryson DeChambeau would defend this week, but he's already withdrawn because he hasn't healed up so we won't be seeing him.

We know that we won't see Phil Mickelson either. Moving on...

We WILL see Rory and Rahm, Hideki and Henrik, and a load of other big names as usual.

As for my picks, I've given up on strategy for a while. I'm just looking for some players who have played well here before. That's about as minimal a strategy as I can think of...

  • Rory McIlroy. Why not?
  • Matt Fitzpatrick. He's got three Top10s since his first appearance in 2019. Works for me!

GC's coverage starts at 2pm ET Thursday, as does PGA TOUR LIVE's streams. You can find the stream schedules at this link. Too bad that Bryson can't defend but with the API's usual great field, how can we lose?