Golf in 2020: Everything to appreciate as the sport navigated a bizarre year amid COVID-19 pandemic


It is the journey season, which suggests a variety of various points to a variety of totally fully totally different individuals, nonetheless in 2020 it might successfully primarily carry out a time for gratitude and thankfulness. There’s tons to mourn nonetheless there’s furthermore tons to rejoice, and whereas it is perhaps more durable to do the latter after a 12 months like this 12 months, it furthermore might be extra essential.

In our little slice of the sports activities actions actions world — the celebration of golf — it might appear trivial to rejoice an entire lot of 1 factor on the top of 2020, and doubtless it’s. Nonetheless I furthermore take into account these weird three months between when the 2020 Gamers Championship was canceled and when the PGA Tour restarted on the Charles Schwab Disadvantage at Colonial Nation membership in June. A whole bunch was up contained in the air for these 90 days, and I am merely glad for the game I cowl to have made it to the tip of this weirdest 12 months of our lifetimes.

In delicate of that, listed under are 20 factors I am grateful for on the planet golf as one totally different 12 months — my eighth overlaying the game, and the strangest of all of them — winds down.

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1. Dustin Johnson

I’ve by no means obtained pretty a bit so as in order so as to add aside from I very slightly loads take pleasure in watching Dustin Johnson hit golf footage and win golf tournaments.

2. The ladies’s sport

It is not that I ignored it ahead of, nonetheless an entire lot of my time is spent overlaying the PGA Tour that it normally seems to be as if there’s little left to present elsewhere. That is the rationale having the U.S. Ladies’s Open in December was such a revelation — it had no fully totally different opponents inside the game. Watching the ladies’s sport, as I prompt my daughter on Sunday, is often extra pleasurable than watching the boys on account of it seems to be as in the event that they’re collaborating inside the sport extra select it was imagined to be carried out and certainly not merely attempting to bludgeon the golf ball into oblivion.

three. All that Bryson content material materials supplies

I do not know that it is intentional, nonetheless Bryson DeChambeau appears incapable of not offering solely the simplest, most elite content material materials supplies for these of us who must cowl these things each single day. From the ant battle to the romp at Winged Foot, I am eternally grateful.

four. Meritocracy

Initially of the 12 months, Sami Valimaki was ranked No. 396 on the planet and Jordan Spieth was ranked No. 44. Now the sooner is ranked forward of the latter. That type of swap could occur in a number of sports activities actions actions, too, nonetheless it’s not as harshly seen and might take varied extra years to come back again once more to fruition.

5. Villains! 

It was an fascinating 12 months for villains. Bryson DeChambeau, Patrick Reed and Brooks Koepka have all, at one second or one totally different, been in that house, and the rub of heroes within the course of the notion of villainous counterparts makes for some really intriguing golf.

6. Jordan Spieth’s battle

It is gone to some darkish areas, and simply two extreme 10s in 2020 is amongst them. Will most likely be a satisfying backdrop for his eventual return to No. 1, although. And sure, Spieth Island is being eroded by a rising tide day-after-day. In some unspecified time ultimately, I would be the one one left.

7. The PGL

I do not know if or when the Premier Golf League will ever get off the underside, nonetheless I do know that opponents — and even the specter of opponents — will push each fully totally different league to be stronger and higher than they already are. It doesn’t matter what you ponder the PGL, that might be an outstanding difficulty.

eight. Small ballparks

As slightly loads talk as there was about distance in expert golf, we bought some really pleasurable, good occasions at small tracks like Colonial and Harbour Metropolis. Whereas I am not optimistic that is the closing try you are attempting to deal with each week as the perfect league on the planet, it’s pleasurable to convey out totally fully totally different skillsets based mostly on the venue.

9. Exhibition matches

Are they sometimes foolish? Is watching Charles Barkley play golf for 3 hours aesthetically advisable? Probably not. Nonetheless nearly each match we have seen up to now has been terribly entertaining and pleasurable because of individuals. There is a system to deal with hitting on there as they get freshened up into the long run, and I am excited to cowl them.

10. Execs like us

Rory McIlroy’s sport felt relatable two instances this 12 months. Correct proper right here they’re.

11. The 48-inch shaft

The revolution is coming, if it is not already correct proper right here. Keith Mitchell acknowledged not too approach again on the “No Laying Up” podcast that everybody would play a 48-inch shaft of their driver in a couple of years, and Phil Mickelson has been saying it for some time, too. This, blended with a thousand fully totally different factors, will hopefully lead these in control of golf to lastly put together some restraint in how far the ball goes and defend the basic venues the place golf is carried out.

12. YouTube

You understand what we do not speak about sufficient? The fact that you will pop on YouTube and pull up practically any swing from any golfer in historic earlier to admire, take into account, evaluation and expertise. Proper right here is perhaps one of the best ever.

13. Outdated (and new) lions

We talked about this a bit within the midst of the PNC Championship over the weekend, nonetheless one among 1,000,000 causes golf is good is on account of it has no age bias. Constructive, there is a candy spot for a participant’s prime, nonetheless Sergio Garcia (age 40) and Collin Morikawa (age 23) each obtained in 2020. For Sergio, it was his 10th straight 12 months with a worldwide win, and for Morikawa it felt like an introduction of himself to the world. Each will seemingly be on the 2021 Ryder Cup at Whistling Straits, and I am genuinely excited to see what subsequent 12 months has in retailer for each them (and others of their programs).

14. The Open

The week of the Open Championship is at all times one I look ahead to all 12 months, and with its absence in 2020 I now acknowledge that higher than ever. Toss that and the Olympics into 2021, and the following 9 months (with a Ryder Cup!) are going to be an absolute journey.

15. Information Golf

The work from the nice people over at Information Golf has made me smarter and extra educated about what is going on on on contained in the golf world, nonetheless it has furthermore made me revenue from the sport slightly extra.

16. Justin Ray

All of that applies to J-Ray as correctly. He is well-known in our smaller golf media world, nonetheless he will need to have about 10x the next he already has. Correct proper right here was my favourite stat he pulled in 2020.

17. Jon Rahm’s facial expressions

They’re good. Take into accout how he reacted after the Memorial Match when Amanda Balionis prompt him he had been assessed a penalty and his late chip-in to seal the event was actually for bogey in its place of birdie? He’s merely the simplest.

18. The PNC

Focus, I am optimistic Charlie Woods could also be talked about correctly into the long run in each healthful and unhealthy methods, nonetheless the weekend he and Tiger shared on the PNC Championship to shut out 2020 was really cool for them to expertise (and for us to get to observe).

19. Golf Twitter

I am not ingrained in every totally different sport’s Twitter world, nonetheless it’s arduous to think about a funnier, extra pleasing group to aim to take care of with. Furthermore: My associate doesn’t need to hear my Pat Reed jokes.

20. Kapalua (and Abu Dhabi)

The beginning of any new 12 months in golf is at all times a thrill, and January — which is just some weeks away! — represents a present begin to what’s going on to hopefully be a extra common (and fewer fractured 2021).



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