PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

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PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Tue 02 May 2017, 6:33 pm

First topic message reminder :

1).The Wells Fargo Championship usually means a trip to Charlotte, North Carolina, and the most excellent Quail Hollow Club, but the PGA Championship will be played there in the August heat, so the bankers at Wells Fargo are driving their stagecoach across the State to Wilmington, and the highly regarded, Tom Fazio-designed Eagle Point Golf Club. It's a Par-72, partly abutting the Intracoastal Waterway, and close to the Atlantic. For most of the field it'll be a course they haven't seen before, but it's nearly twenty years old and you'd imagine many of the local (North & South Carolina) pros have played there, and Carl Pettersson has the course record.

2).Until the age of 30, I had no idea Wells Fargo was a bank, thought it was just a black-and-white TV Western, starring Dale Robertson. Now I know better what with Wells Fargo being a poster child for scumbag practices that make you wonder why most of its 286,000 employees are not serving time. As it is, white collar crime pays and good riddance to their customers. But at least they run a good golf tournament.

3).Before we look in more detail, let's cast a butcher's at last week's "Zurich Classic of New Orleans".
I was lukewarm about the Team concept, doubted the quality of the field and wondered how the format would be embraced and show on TV.
Wrong on all counts, and the play that I watched couldn't have been much more entertaining. Hopefully more elite players will turn up next year, and maybe CBS's Jim Nantz will condescend to appear. Well done to Zurich.

4).Jonas Blixt and Cameron Smith played 76 holes without a bogey, coincidentally 43 years after Trevino became (and still is) the only player to win a PGA Tournament without a bogey on his card. (Others have gone bogeyless and not won, Charlie Howell recently at the Greenbrier for one.) Smith first entered the consciousness of Tour followers in autumn 2014 when he finished 5th in his first Tour event, the CIMB in Malaysia, followed that up with a 4th place at the Chambers Bay US Open, then was a close runner up to Spieth at the Aussie Open.

5).With all the hoopla about the 23-y-o's on Tour, Smith has pretty much stayed off the radar but there's little doubt the latest Baby-faced assassin is the real thing, a star of the future, if not present.
A down side to his share of the win is that he won't be credited with OWGR points; in fact he dropped two places in the rankings (and Blixt dipped four places), but one trusts that Nick Price was keeping his eye on someone who might not make his Presidents Cup Team on points, but should be in serious consideration for a wild card.

6).The Internationals currently in the qualifying places for Nick's Team are:
Day, Matsuyama, Scott, Schwartzel, Grace, Leishman, Oosthuizen, Grillo, Hadwin, Ikeda. If that status remained quo, I'd think Ben An and Cam Smith would be strong candidates to fill out the team.

7).The US Rankings look like this:
Dustin Johnson, Thomas, Spieth, Fowler, Kisner, Chappell, Berger, Koepka, Snedeker, Moore.
Last year's Ryder Cup winners not currently in the top ten are:
Reed (11th), Mickelson (14th), Kuchar (15th), Walker (19th), Holmes (29th), Zach Johnson (44th).

8).And: Who'd've thought when Jason Day strode into the winners enclosure at last year's Players Championship that the next five Aussies winners would be: Baddeley, Chalmers, Pampling, Leishman, Smith. Adam Scott? Who's he??
NB: Thinking cap firmly on to figure out the last five British Tour winners: mmmmm: McIlroy, Knox, Willett, McDowell, Rose perhaps? Dunno, but can't think of any others in the past three years.

9).Back to The Players next week and TPC Sawgrass's action will be followed on Tour by:
~Byron Nelson
~Colonial
~Memorial
~Memphis
~US Open
~Travelers.

10).And so to the Wells Fargo Classic, in Wilmington, NC. Also known as the ancestral home of Michael Jordan and close by some wonderful beaches.
There's a middling strength of field, highlighted by the return from injury of Dustin Johnson, a relatively local lad who's most likely played the course in College golf if nothing else. Adam Scott is here, Phil, Jon Rahm, Oosthuizen, Casey and Carolina boys including Bill Haas, Webb Simpson, Kisner & Wes Bryan.
EDIT: Oosthuizen is a non-runner.

One ironic aspect of last week's action is that Kelly Kraft and Grayson Murray each had their best finishes since their moronic tweets about Asian and European Tour members fast-tracking it up the OWGR's to qualify for WGC's. Too bad your excellent work last week was unrewarded by OWGR points then lads.
I like Wes Bryan and Bill Haas among the field this week but could be persuaded that Grayson Murray, another Carolina lad, might be good each way value - he was very streaky in breaking through last year, despite a dental deficiency, so maybe he'll go on a run. Then go straight to his dentist.


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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Fri 05 May 2017, 7:59 pm

Gonzo conjured two bogeys in his final 3 holes to possibly miss the cut by one. Another story we've seen before.

Italy leading from Ireland and Sweden as the Hammers action begins.

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by GPB on Fri 05 May 2017, 10:42 pm

Here a tweet from former GC host Kraig Kann that has Jim Nantz with Peter Oosterhuis


https://twitter.com/KraigKann/status/860605718944264194

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Fri 05 May 2017, 10:50 pm

Nice!
I used to quite like Kann.

Good to see the Spaniards in the Works.

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by GPB on Fri 05 May 2017, 11:49 pm

147 out of the 153 qualified players in the Players next week

Not playing

Tiger
Sneds (wrist)
Pieters (not sure why)
Jon Curran (not sure why)
Colt Knost (wrist)
John Senden (Very sick son)

Three more WDs before first alternate gets in, which I think is Ollie Schniederjans.

Winner this week gets an 11th hour invite, if not already qualified.

Seamus Power, Xander Schauffele, Ken Duke, JT Poston are in contention who do not have an invite yet.

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Sat 06 May 2017, 3:39 am

Curran has been out injured . . . . . .
But Pieters is a puzzler, though can't imagine Sawgrass is a course he'd much fancy.
Hope Lowry hangs on and makes the Wells Fargo cut - still think he could have a big weekend in him.
So: Fingers crossed for Shane, Keep it up Seamus.

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by GPB on Sun 07 May 2017, 2:34 pm

The Thread is very quiet considering all the Euros that are in contention in Wilmington.

Ben An, Nick Taylor, Kevin Tway would get themselves an 11th hour invite to the Players if they win.

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Shotrock on Sun 07 May 2017, 9:03 pm

Cream rising at the Wells Fargo. I look for Ryder Cup winners DJ or Reed ... But future Ryder Cupper Jon Rahm might have something to say about that.

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by GPB on Sun 07 May 2017, 10:06 pm

Dateline December 2016

Greg Norman is planning something big

He’s reportedly arranged a media summit midway through next year to announce a secret plan he expects will change the golfing landscape in a massive way. While he didn’t say what his secret plan was, he did tell eight members of the media at the recent unveiling of the Greg Norman Signature Course at Vidanta Neuvo Vallarta, Mexico, that we can expect it to have a huge impact.
“In the middle second quarter of next year, I’ll invite you guys down to my office. We will tell you exactly how we’re going to break this cast iron that’s been wrapped around golf for so long. We’re going to shatter it,” Norman said.


“The institutions (USGA, R&A, PGA of America, PGA Tour) will eventually buy into it because they will have to buy into it. They won’t have a choice."

Its May 7th, one week from being the middle of the 2nd qtr.


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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by ralphjohn69 on Sun 07 May 2017, 11:25 pm

8 years ago Scotsman Gavin Dear played Brian Harman in the lead game in the singles at the Walker Cup both days, halving on the Saturday before beating him 3&2 on the Sunday.  This weekend Brian Harman won on the PGA tour winning >$1million while Gavin Dear got to play with me in the Lothians Team Tournament at Ratho Park (he shot 1-over 70 incidentally, I had a rather miserable 77!)  zen

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by pedro on Mon 08 May 2017, 7:45 pm

Oh Dear...

And Grayson Murray did an Allenby and fired his caddy mid-round of the Wells Fargo yesterday. Maybe they were discussing OWGR points on the European Tour?

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Shotrock on Mon 08 May 2017, 7:53 pm

Greg "The Ego" Norman never lacked for bluster. Time to see the plan!

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by GPB on Mon 08 May 2017, 8:46 pm

Murray's caddie was Mike Hicks, Payne Stewart's long time caddie.

He was also in the hotel room when Matt Every got busted for smoking pot.

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by pedro on Mon 08 May 2017, 10:39 pm

Shotrock wrote:Greg "The Ego" Norman never lacked for bluster. Time to see the plan!
It almost sounds like he wants to drain the swamp..

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by beninho on Tue 09 May 2017, 10:17 am

So this Grayson Murray sounds like the biggest man sausage in golf, which takes some doing.

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by super_realist on Tue 09 May 2017, 11:17 am

beninho wrote:So this Grayson Murray sounds like the biggest man sausage in golf, which takes some doing.

and he's a bible basher

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Tue 09 May 2017, 1:14 pm

Sounds like a "Special FedEx Cup" announcement due at 8.30 ET.
Maybe Greg Norman has acquired FedEx and the PGA Tour has to be renamed the Shark Tour?

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Tue 09 May 2017, 1:24 pm

Nope, apparently not. But a 10-year extension may herald the announcement of impending changes, not necessarily related to Greg Norman:

http://www.golfchannel.com/news/golf-central-blog/fedex-extends-cup-sponsorship-changes-expected/

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by Shotrock on Tue 09 May 2017, 2:21 pm

Hope "The Ego" takes on the big tour. Hope he gets crushed. That's all.

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Tue 09 May 2017, 6:47 pm

It seems new PGA Tour Commissioner Monahan is backing off rumoured plans to move The Players from May back to March. He hasn't closed the door completely shut, but "Right now we don't have any plans to move it back to March".

Imagine robo would say there's no smoke without fire so perhaps the Tour is having difficulty in negotiating further calendar changes with the PGA of America? Either way, you'd think they might cool their jets until they have to make a decision on the worldwide schedule gets to be upheaved to accommodate the Tokyo Olympics?

Dunno. Pure speculation, but I'd be all for the current structure of top events remain essentially the same.

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Tue 09 May 2017, 9:37 pm

I see Willett and Smart have split up, Willett reportedly using Lipsky's caddie for The Players.

Willett is going to drop like a stone in the owgr's if he doesn't buck his ideas up pronto.

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by GPB on Tue 09 May 2017, 11:21 pm

Rex Hoggard of Golf Channel is reporting that existing and new players to the PGATour will NOT be allowed to play the PGATour if they sign sponsorships with FEDEX competitors

Westwood and Oosthuizen, with their UPS logos, are exempt from the banishment and can continue their membership.

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Tue 09 May 2017, 11:30 pm

HTF do they propose how to define competitors?
Absurd.

What if the Postal Service wanted to sponsor an event or golfer? Are they going to exclude the US Gov't?? What about airlines???
Would have thought this, if true, could have anti-trust implications.

Almost a challenge thrown down to plausibly competitive companies to offer golfers millions to emblazon themselves with logoes to wear in non-Tour events, Majors & WGC's. Then, what about tournament winners or top-50 players?

A bunch of entitled maroons.


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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by I'm never wrong on Tue 09 May 2017, 11:30 pm

Didn't Westwood have some grief some time ago when he tried to play St Jude?

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by GPB on Wed 10 May 2017, 12:58 am

There is some precedent.

The tour says that a player can have the name of casinos on their clothing (and bag), but not the word "casino". Several Tour pros have casinos on their shirt, but not the word "casino". Jimmy Walker and Ryan Moore have either ARIA Resort or Bellagio embroidered.

Kuchar had a deal with Grey Goose, but IIRC, it was never a logo on his shirt or golf bag.

All they have to is put in the rules and regulations handbook.

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Wed 10 May 2017, 1:23 am

Inw,
Westwood WON the St.Jude, in 2002!

GPB,
I'm suggesting sponsors competitive to FedEx could push the envelope - where do they draw the line? (Had no idea what ARIA was! But Watney is another Bellagio guy I think.)
Doesn't the Grey Goose have Grey Goose logos?

Hadn't realised that CHIII was awol this week.

Or that Jim Furyk and Mike Weir are 47-y-o twins! Happy birthday to both on Friday . . . . . . .

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by GPB on Wed 10 May 2017, 1:27 am

kwinigolfer wrote:Inw,
Westwood WON the St.Jude, in 2002!

Better check that!



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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Wed 10 May 2017, 1:44 am

GPB wrote:
kwinigolfer wrote:Inw,
Westwood WON the St.Jude, in 2002!

Better check that!


I was fact-checking and got sidetracked by CHIII!!!
Knew it was prior to a PB US Open - how's about 2010. And I quite like McDool for a longshot choice this week.

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by GPB on Wed 10 May 2017, 1:45 am

Exactly 2010.

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by robopz on Wed 10 May 2017, 1:45 am

Kwini... Saw Monahan's​ comments RE Players move... I didn't read anything into them other than we're not ready to discuss them. I like Jay, but if anyone was hoping he'd be more "forthcoming" than Finchem... Today's presser should have dashed that notion.

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by robopz on Wed 10 May 2017, 1:50 am

On the face of it I have a lot of questions if the FedEx exclusivity thing would fly legally. But I see even less chance we'll ever know cuz I can't see any player willing to challenge it.

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

Post by kwinigolfer on Wed 10 May 2017, 1:58 am

robo,
As I suggested, could have anti-trust implications.
I'm not suggesting a Tour member would have a go, but what's to stop a non-member? Someone who could get, say, seven starts?
Say a Chubby client??

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Re: PGA Tour: Wells Fargo Championship: Notes from the Ballwasher

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