The 2013-14 PGA Tour season gave us Tiger Woods getting injured, having surgery, and getting injured again. Phil Mickelson failed to win for the first time since 2003. It saw the return of Martin Kaymer and Henrik Stenson to prominence. Rory McIlroy (re)claimed the number one ranking in the world, both literally in terms of the OWGR and in the minds of fans everywhere. After the PGA Championship, there is little doubt that he is the best golfer on the planet. Then again, after the past few weeks, maybe we were asking the wrong question. Instead of wondering who will be next to rival Tiger Woods, maybe we should be wondering how good a McIlroy-Horschel rivalry can be.
In addition to the wrap up of the PGA Tour, this week also the official end of major season, as the LPGA’s Evian Championship concluded in France. The week after next, the U.S. and European squads will go head to head at Gleneagles for the 2014 Ryder Cup. Until then, let’s hit the links.
Hole #1: Karma Pays Horschel Back, Big Time
Billy Horschel laughed when he chunked a six-iron into a hazard on the 72nd hole of the Deutsche Bank Championship, despite it costing him a chance to win. Many of us might have dropped a few choice words or “disciplined” a club, but he just laughed and took his drop. The next week, Horschel cruised to a two-stroke victory over Bubba Watson in the BMW Championship at Cherry Hills. This weekend, he finished it off in huge fashion by winning the whole shooting match, the TOUR Championship and the FedExCup title. I’ve decided I need to laugh more. [Link]
Hole #2: 11.4 Million Reasons to Stay
Going into the Tour Championship, Billy Horschel and his wife Brittany had already agreed that if she went into labor, he would stay and finish the tournament. Good plan. [Link]
Hole #3: Norman Nearly Loses Hand
Two-time major winner, Greg Norman was trimming sea grapes and other trees around his Florida home on Saturday when his left hand tangled with the chain saw. Norman is recovering and should be fine. Just another reminder that golf is safer than yard work. [Link]
Hole #4: Teen Wins Evian Championship
The season’s final major goes to Hyo-Joo Kim. The teenager trailed playing partner Karrie Webb by a stroke standing on the 18th tee. Kim made birdie, Webb bogey. At 19 years and 62 days, Kim is just the third youngest major winner on the LPGA Tour. [Link]
Hole #5: Lucky Number 13 for Casey
Paul Casey won the KLM Open this week, his 13th overall and first since becoming a father. [Link]
Hole #6: Ace to Send Andy Sullivan to Space
— Prim Siripipat (@ESPNPrim) September 14, 2014
Hole #7: Keegan’s Coffee
The daily struggles of Keegan Bradley…. https://t.co/AZz98pCxWB
— Golf Club Wankers (@GolfClubWankers) September 8, 2014
Hole #8: Justin Thomas Wins Nationwide Children’s Hospital Championship
It took a playoff, but Justin Thomas took the third leg of the Web .com Tour Finals in Columbus, Ohio. [Link]
HUGE congrats to my boy @JustinThomas34 on a clutch win this week!! Looking forward to celebrating in a couple weeks!
— Jordan Spieth (@JordanSpieth) September 14, 2014
Hole #9: Draft Horschel
Who wouldn’t you take off the U.S. Ryder Cup team to substitute Billy Horschel right now? [Link]
Remember that time Seve kicked Miguel Angel Martin off the Euro Ryder team with iffy wrist injury? Replaced by Jose Maria. #Hmmm
— Steve Elling (@EllingYelling) September 14, 2014
Hole #10: Keegan DQs Himself, After Being Cleared by Officials
— Srixon (@SrixonGolf) September 8, 2014
Hole #11: The (Almost) Three-Peat
Billy Horschel nearly finished the year going back-to-back-to-back in the FedEx Cup Playoffs. In fact, he was just one fat shot (and a putt) away from doing it. [Link]
Hole #12: Another Olympic-size Headache
— Morning Drive (@GCMorningDrive) September 8, 2014
Hole #13: What If You Won a Tournament and Nobody Noticed?
Somewhere in the wilds of Siberia…
— Golf Channel (@GolfChannel) September 8, 2014
Hole #14: Edelweiss (Or Ditto the Previous)
Cherry Hills provided some beautiful scenery for the BMW Championship, but for aesthetics alone the Omega European Masters had it beat (yes, that’s yet another “masters” event on the Euro Tour). American David Lipsky won the event in a playoff. [Link]
Hole #15: McIlroy Lands Drive in Fan’s Pocket
Some strange things happen to Rory McIlroy. What is the front pocket capture speed of a pair of men’s shorts, anyway? [Link]
Hole #16: Bubba’s Kind of Corny
— Global Golf Post (@GlobalGolfPost) September 8, 2014
Hole #17: Rory’s Deja Vu
I have made a lot of strange scores in strange ways, but I can’t remember ever four-putting the same green in back-to-back rounds. At least he can joke about it. [Link]
Just incase anyone missed my 4 putt yesterday, I had to do it again, decent week overall, still in a great position going to Atlanta.
— Rory Mcilroy (@McIlroyRory) September 7, 2014
Hole #18: The Backwards Single Lindy
He was going for a Henrik Stenson moment, but he ended up all wet.
Video: Golfer falls in lake http://t.co/fAJ2Jt2QHM
— Robert Walters (@Bunker<ShotGolf) September 5, 2014