2022 Players Championship

Don Wassall

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It starts today, the near-major that leads into four straight months with a major.

Tiger Woods was inducted into the Golf Hall of Fame last night. I watched some of his remarks, he has some humility to him now so it's hard to dislike him. It's the likes of Golf Channel Propaganda Minister Rich Lerner that are hard to stomach. Lerner poses as Woods' biggest fan in the world, which is saying something given how the media has lionized him over the years. From what I could tell, almost all of the "Live From The Players" last night was about Richie's faux-hero, however I turned it off for good when I flicked back just as Lerner was narrating a segment showing brief footage of different top players and saying, "They come here because they want to win for Him." Not God or Jesus Christ, but Tiger Woods. (Sorry for the basphemous spelling of "him" but it's meant sarcastically.) His fellow analysts at the network must be truly cucked to be able to suppress their gag reflex around Lerner.

But Tiger isn't playing, and at 46 and coming off a serious leg injury from his latest driving-while-high adventure, on top of all the other injuries he's had, he's finished as a threat to win majors.

There's no clear favorite to win. Jon Rahm is still number one in the world but there is no dominant player currently, just some really good ones. There's been quite a shuffle the last few years as Jordan Spieth, Jason Day, Rory McIlroy and Justin Thomas failed miserably to become a "big four." Thomas has had the best run, while McIlroy is going on eight years without a major now, Spieth five. Collin Morikawa has been the best young player, winning majors in 2020 and 2021. Meanwhile, the talented Scottie Scheffler has won two of the past three tournaments.

This is always an enjoyable event on a tough course with a great field and huge galleries of very enthusiastic fans so I'm looking forward to it.
 
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I'll definitely be watching. I did see Wood's HOF induction. He had some good back stories which helped provide some context on his mental fortitude, competitiveness and formula for his future success. His father was relentless and instilled in him a strong work ethic and a no excuses type of philosophy. That being said I was pretty disappointed when he played the race card "victim" approach stating that he couldn't get into the clubhouses of country clubs he was playing a tourney at. I grew up in the same area in CA, a decade earlier and play golf . I have never seen this "faux" racism he mentions. Not sure if this is revisionist history or his days of not being a race baiter and apologist are finished.
 

Don Wassall

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Yes, I heard that part too and my bs detector immediately went off, just as it did when one of Woods' first Nike commercials claimed he was barred from some golf courses for racial reasons, which Woods retracted after it was scrutinized and found to be fictitious. Letting him play in tournaments but barring him afterward from entering clubhouses sounds like the kind of fable from the Jim Crow South leftists love to hear and instantly believe, but claiming it happened in California in the 1990s fails the common sense test, and if false is little different than the hoaxes underlying so many "hate crime" allegations.
 

Don Wassall

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Today should be the third round, but there were guys still finishing their first round due to over 4.5 inches of rain the past two days. It's sunny today but the wind is howling, making the course play like it's the British Open on a bad weather day, lots of high scores.

The tournament won't finish until Monday, the first time that's happened since 2005.
 

Carolina Speed

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There's no clear favorite to win. Jon Rahm is still number one in the world but there is no dominant player currently, just some really good ones. There's been quite a shuffle the last few years as Jordan Spieth, Jason Day, Rory McIlroy and Justin Thomas failed miserably to become a "big four." Thomas has had the best run, while McIlroy is going on eight years without a major now, Spieth five. Collin Morikawa has been the best young player, winning majors in 2020 and 2021. Meanwhile, the talented Scottie Scheffler has won two of the past three tournaments.
You got that right. It looks like the following big name players are in danger or will miss the cut:
Rory McIlroy
Patick Reed-Possibly
Jason Day
Webb Simpson-Possibly
Justin Rose
Collin Morikawa
Jordan Spieth +7 today
Xander Schauffele +6 today
Adam Scott
Lee Westwood +8 today
Brooks Koepka +9 today
I would like to watch this tournament, but it has eliminated just about any player I'm pulling for, Maybe Dustin Johnson or Justin Thomas. How about Harold Varner III?
 

BeyondFedUp

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Thanks for the info Carolina Speed. That's a lot of big names in danger of missing the cut. Absolutely nuts. Maybe they must be fighting the slower greens because of the heavy rains or something? I don't know. Very much a letdown probably for the fans there too.
 

Don Wassall

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Justin Thomas shot a remarkable bogey-free three under today in the brutal conditions. I'll be rooting for him to become the first-ever defending champion in The Players to repeat.

The conditions for Sunday won't be much better -- a high only in the low to mid 50s and windy again but not blowing super-hard as happened today. It'll only be in the high 30s when the first players tee off in the morning, quite cold for this time of year in Florida with the wind making it feel even colder.
 

Don Wassall

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Irishman Shane Lowry gets an ace at the 17th, the famous island hole, just the tenth ace ever at that hole during The Players. His reaction and that of the huge gallery is fun to watch:

 
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BeyondFedUp

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What an ace! I'm surprised he didn't keep the ball. Nice souvenir for that lucky guy.
 

Don Wassall

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The final round is only now getting underway. The last threesome to tee off consists of Lahiri (born in India), Munoz (dark-skinned Colombian), and Ghim (South Korean immigrant). However none of them have won anything of note and the leaderboard is very tightly bunched with over two dozen competitors still right in the hunt. But the symbolism of it undoubtedly sent tingles up and down Rich Lerner's legs.
 

icsept

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Came home for lunch and have watched the leaders all collapsing. Paul Casey just tied Cam Smith at -9, starting the back nine.
 

Don Wassall

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Four solid players currently tied for the lead at -9 as many of the pretenders have fallen back -- Viktor Hovland, Cameron Smith, Paul Casey and Keegan Bradley. But it's still a very bunched leaderboard with a couple dozen players still in contention.
 

Don Wassall

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Cameron Smith, the mullet-wearing Aussie, shoots a brilliant final round 66 and wins The Players by a shot. He had a few sketchy holes but his putting was flawless and his iron play nearly so, especially under the pressure of a huge tournament. Smith wins $3.6 million, the biggest first place prize ever on the PGA Tour. He may not be well-known but he was the 10th ranked golfer in the world even before winning today.
 
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Carolina Speed

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Happy for Cameron Smith. It was his 5th PGA Tour victory at 28 years old. I tried watching some of the tournament this afternoon, but the weather was fantastic here in North Carolina, so I went out and played nine holes thus missing Smith's win.
It doesn't look like anyone wants to try and dominate the PGA the Woods did for years, so at every Major Tournament we're going to have here how Tiger is the greatest golfer of all time. As ya'll know my opinion is Jack Nicklaus is the GOAT and I believe his record speaks for itself. I would put Tiger in a tie for second or third behind Ben Hogan.
There are a handful of players I thought might win 10 or more Majors and approach Woods' 15, but it seems players like McIlroy and Spieth who started quickly, won't challenge Tigers' Majors. Mickelson had his chances, but blew six US Open leads. Dustin Johnson has all the tools, but his laid back attitude doesn't speak to breaking any record anytime soon. Maybe there's just so much money being thrown at these guys, they've just become complacent and satisfied getting rich from the sponsors.
I will say unlike in Tigers' prime, there is a ton of talented players, so winning 10 or more Majors may be a thing of the past or possibly in another era. So, for now I guess we'll have to keep watching Lerner salivate over Woods' accomplishments.
I'll give Woods credit, although he has earned more money than any other golfer ever, he wanted to win tournaments more than anyone else in his era or anyone in the current era, apparently.
 
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