The Genesis Open suffered through very long days this weekend as players worked to make up for the weather delay on Thursday. The leaders played 33 holes on Sunday, and J.B. Holmes came out on top at the end of it all. Holmes started the round 4 shots back of Justin Thomas but clipped JT by 5 over the final 18 holes. Genesis Open Leaderboard
Slow man on the totem pole
J.B. Holmes won his 5th PGA Tour event on Sunday, but it was his first since 2015. We’re all good and happy for him and his family, but Holmes’ victory put a spotlight on one of golf’s largest issues: slow play.
The pace of play on Sunday was an absolute disgrace. This issue is not specific to J.B. Holmes, but he is the poster boy and one of the worst offenders. He was caught multiple times on Sunday taking over a minute to hit the golf ball. His preparation does not start until it is his turn to play, and his conduct is noticeably detrimental to his playing partners.
JB Holmes is a disgrace. The way the rules are currently enforced fast players have no choice but to slow down and become slower players. If they don’t they are at a huge disadvantage.
— Tee-k Kelly (@teekkelly) February 18, 2019
Slow play has become a part of the fabric of professional golf over the decade. A combination of purse sizes, green speeds and conditions, and general lack of a governing body being the main contributors to the slowed pace. Players are not being penalized for their slow play, so they continue to break the rule as it relates to the amount of time they have to hit the golf ball.
All in all, nothing is going to change until the USGA or the PGA Tour steps in. Until then, J.B. Holmes is free to play as slowly as he wishes. But congrats on the win.
We have no idea what got into Justin Thomas during the final round. JT was absolutely coasting through 54 holes but made five bogies and a double on his way to a last-round 75. This is the second tournament in the last three weeks that JT has been in the final group but failed to convert. His play through the first three rounds gave him a 4-shot cushion and made it seem like he was untouchable. Hopefully this stops soon because this is not a trend that we want for one of the best players in the world.
Other Leaderboard Notes
Rory put up a nice showing at Riviera despite a first round 72. He fired 63 during the final round and got himself within sniffing distance on Sunday. The wedge game let him down over the final 36, but his game is definitely there.
Adam Scott got himself into the mix yet again but was severely let down by his putter. He missed six putts inside 10 feet over his final 18 holes on his way to a 76. Scott has been hit-or-miss this season but now has two top-3 finishes in his last three events.
Si Woo Kim shot up to 3rd place this weekend after a final-round 66. He has now finished T-4 and 3rd in his past two events. The 23-year-old still has a lot of potential and the ability to win every time he tees it up.
Tiger really looked like he was going to get it going this weekend. He started his third round five-under through four holes but was only able to muster a 65. He then got it to -3 through 7 during the final round, but four bogies led to a final-round 72 and a T-15 finish.
Jordan Spieth shot a final-round 81. He started the final round with a birdie and then made two bogies, a double, a triple, and a quad over his next 17 holes. Spieth has not been able to put together a complete tournament in quite some time, and this collapse just adds to the current state of his game.
Journeyman Mark Hubbard notched his first win since 2011 at the LECOM Suncoast Classic on the Web.com Tour. Hubbard shot four rounds of 67 or better to clip Maverick McNealy by two shots. Homeless Hubbs is one of the most down-to-earth people you’ll ever meet. His demeanor and personality are incredibly easy to root for.
Although he finished second this week, Mav McNealy has already had a solid start to the year. He now has three top-20 finishes and has been in contention multiple times. The former Stanford All-American will be a force in professional golf for years to come.
One last note on the Web. You had to average 68 this week just to notch a top 10 this week. Add that to the “so you want to play professional golf” responses. Leaderboard
Australian Country Grammar
Nelly Korda notched her second professional victory of her career on Sunday. The up-and-coming American won the Australian Women’s Open by two shots over Jin Young Ko. Korda made seven birdies over the final 18 to seal the event and win for the second time in the last four months. The strong play has led to 20-year-old Korda ascending the world rankings. Last year Korda ranked 61st in the Rolex World Golf Rankings, now she will move inside the top 15 with the win. Leaderboard
Miguel Angel Jimenez defeated Bernhard Langer and Olin Browne in a playoff to win the Chubb Classic on the Champions Tour. Leaderboard
Ryan Fox captured his first European Tour victory with the ISPS Handa World 6 Perth Championship. Leaderboard
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Shotgun Start: The Plumb-Bob Prince wins at Riv, Tiger shows signs of life, and Spieth ejects
Andy and Brendan return to discuss all things Genesis Open, but first get to shoutouts and just credit for Ryan Fox, Nelly Korda, and Mark Hubbard on their big wins Sunday. Then we get to the matter of J.B. Holmes, who made more news for his pace of play at Riviera than his victory over Justin Thomas. We discuss the slow play pandemic, what could actually force change, where JB falls on the spectrum of offenders (he’s the worst), and the ultimate nightmare slow-play foursome. The “season of championships” is now officially a thing, with graphics weaved into the broadcast, so we address that. We also discuss Tiger’s charge and future prospects as well as Jordan Spieth’s big implosion that led to his worst PGA Tour round. Andy gets angry about the Genesis Open’s new elevated status sweeping aside the event’s illustrious history. Then we wrap with a news segment on Matt Kuchar trying to make good with El Tucan, Bryson’s enraged vandalism of a Riviera bunker, and the architect of the “Live Under Par” campaign leaving the PGA Tour. Listen on iTunes, Stitcher or Spotify