Happy to be back Augusta National again this year. Feel super blessed and lucky every time I get to be here!
And this edition of the Masters has the potential to be one of the best ever. Most of the big names in golf are playing great heading into the first major of the season.
Here’s a list of players who’ve won events this season on the PGA Tour or WGC events on the European Tour:
Justin Thomas (2x)
Bubba Watson (2x)
All of those guys are capable of slipping on a green jacket Sunday.
And then there’s Tiger Woods.
It wasn’t long ago that golf fans were wondering if Tiger would ever play the game again. And now we’re looking at Tiger as the betting favorite to win this week.
I think that’s crazy, even if Tiger is playing well and certainly could be in the hunt to win this time. He’s won four times at Augusta, and certainly knows the nuances of the course.
Tiger played well in the Florida swing, he was runner up at Valspar and had a top five finish in the Arnold Palmer Invitational. That’s given fans hope that the Big Cat can win again, adding to his impressive mark of 14 majors and 79 PGA Tour victories.
However, the new, longer Augusta will force him to hit driver more than he did at those events, and that club has been shaky at best.
Woods short game, especially putting, has been spot on, and that gives him a chance if he can keep the ball in play off the tee.
One thing’s for sure- Tiger being in the hunt again is great for golf. No other player in any sport moves the needle like ETW does.
Sure, the Masters is probably the one event that is a huge draw because of the course/tradition by itself. But Tiger in the field with a realistic chance to win automatically makes your tournament bigger and brings in a ton more TV sets.
All that said, Tiger won’t win. He’ll contend, probably finish in the top 15, but I just don’t see him winning.
Bubba (ugh) will win. He’s playing great, his length and ball flight is perfectly tailored for Augusta, and I see the former Georgia Bulldog getting his third green jacket.
2. Justin Rose
For me, nothing will top Jack’s amazing Sunday that led to Nicklaus winning for the sixth time at Augusta in 1986.
However, this 2018 Masters is lining up to be one of the best.
Let’s hope all the heavyweights bring their best stuff and we have an amazing Sunday!