It really does seem like time is flying in this PGA Tour season, it was just 8 months ago I was still living in Jupiter, FL playing PGA National often (when the courses were open and they didn't shut down the driving range at 5:15pm....nevermind). It's Honda Classic week! You'd think a tournament that is played within 25 min. of most of the worlds top 50 players there would be one unbelievable field...but here we are. The Honda Classic is home to the storied "Bear Trap", which is 15, 16,17 at PGA National. As many times as I played it, there could be ZERO wind all day but the second you got to the Bear Trap it was blowing directly into your face, it makes no sense. That being said, they are easily the most difficult holes on the course if the wind is blowing against you. The rest of the course is kind of bleh, good not great, especially for an annual PGA Tour stop. I am not a good golfer by any means but can navigate my way around there relatively easy...besides the previously mentioned Bear Trap.
Pictured above: My Dad (Jim Spuller), myself and the bear at the start of the Bear Trap
As I posted the picture above, it really got me realizing how much the game of golf has brought to me. Some of the coolest things I have ever been able to do in my life have revolved around the game of golf. For those that have followed the podcast, my Dad was a PGA Professional and is the main reason I got into golf in the first place. Given my temper growing up and propensity (yes, I had to google how to spell that word) to do things at full speed, golf probably wasn't the best place for me. As smooth and technically sound as my Dads game is, especially around the green....I am basically the opposite, I'd use the analogy that its like a bull in a china shop but it's more than that. The best way someone described my game is "without a doubt you will hit the worst and best shots of the day" and "sometimes I think you are better from another fairway or when you're in trouble." This stems from absolutely swinging out of my shoes and trying to kill every single drive growing up and having to learn how to get creative to not shot a 147 because if I hit a drive straight, it was usually a mistake and if it had a draw to it....look out because my swing is lost but I digress...I still have never beaten him at golf.
Back to the Honda Classic, look I loved everything about working for the PGA of America, the people were amazing, we went to some of my favorite places in the world and we were able to get a discounted membership to PGA National. That being said, PGA National (not owned or ran by the PGA of America) should not be an annual tour stop. It's an average course in Florida at best, it just happens to have space to build and the willingness to host a tournament. That is part of the reason only 6 of the top 20 players in the world are playing in it despite 8 of the top 20 living within 20 minutes of the course and Phil Mickelson just moved into town too. That being said it has produced some impressive winners over the years.
2018 - Justin Thomas (Palm Beach resident)
2017 - Rickie Fowler (Palm Beach resident)
2016- Adam Scott
2015 - Padraig Harrington
Vegas has the odds for the top 10 players as below:
Tommy Fleetwood +900
Brooks Koepka +1000
Rickie Fowler +1200
Justin Rose +2000
Gary Woodland +2000
Louis Oosthuizen +2000
Billy Horschel +2000
Viktor Holland +2500
Sungjae Im +2500
Daniel Berger +3000
Our picks will be as follows: (Big spot for Tommy Fleetwood too, I like him at +900)
Brooks Koepka +1000 - Just had that major GQ article where he basically said golf is boring, he doesn't need new friends and he'd rather be a baseball player. It is actually a great article and he makes a ton of points we agree with - https://www.gq.com/story/brooks-koepka-profile-2020
Ryan Palmer +6000 - He's been playing well recently and think he will continue in the Florida swing with a depleated field
Matthew Wolff +7000 - Just watched his College teammate Viktor get a big win in Puerto Rico and will look to continue the Oklahoma State run
Keegan Bradley +7000 - I like Keegan, always been a fan but he needs to speed up his game or I'm removing him from lists like this.
We'll make some calls as well to see if we can increase the amount of golf shots on telecast and hopefully not get stuck watching scenic shots of the gators in random ponds as opposed to iron shots.
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"No regrets that's my motto....that and everyone wang chung tonight" - Out Cold
I love me some me! - Justin Thomas