Whether your weekend consists of a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Augusta National, a long stint in front of the television, or sporadic tournament check-ins for a nice conversation piece, here are a few things that might help you in your journey through Masters week.
The Talk of the Tourney
5. Bryson DeChambeau – He’s an amateur on a course designed by the all-time greatest amateur golfer, Bobby Jones, and some believe he could contend or even win. The SMU student plans to turn pro after The Masters.
4. No Tiger — Tiger Woods pulled out of the Masters Tournament due to a lingering back issue. He did attend Tuesday night’s Champions Dinner, and Augusta National Chairman Billy Payne said Wednesday, “I’d suspect Tiger’s going to be back fairly quickly, and I’m looking forward to it.”
3. Remembering ’86 — Jack Nicklaus put on his epic second nine finish 30 years ago at the age of 46 to win his record-setting 18th major championship. To this day, The Golden Bear remains the oldest Masters winner.
2. Watson’s final stroll — 1977 and 1981 Masters Champion Tom Watson has announced that this will be his final Masters tournament. The 66-year-old last made the Masters cut with a T-18 finish in 2010.
1. The future is now — Jordan Spieth. Jason Day. Rory McIlroy. The young guns of golf have the sport’s future looking as bright as ever. Now, we’re ready to see an epic showdown.
New to The Masters
5. For the first time ever, Masters.com will stream live coverage of Amen Corner using 4K technology.
4. Rumors are swirling about plans to lengthen the 13th hole. Chairman Billy Payne says the club is looking into several options.
3. Though you can’t see it without a green jacket, the Champion’s locker room has been renovated, with reigning champion Spieth sharing a locker with Arnold Palmer.
2. You can now watch complete rounds of two featured groups daily on Masters.com and the Masters app.
1. The Masters Gnome. It’s a strange creature and a new addition to the Augusta National Gift Shop. I purchased one.
Home of the Roars (Places on the course where the most celebrations occur).
5. The 2nd hole green. The par 5 is a player’s best chance at an early-round birdie, and if the player can fly the fairway bunker off of the tee, the second shot can offer a dramatic shot into the green.
4. The 12th hole. Rae’s Creek and swirling winds, players say the par 3 is a birdie hole some days and a let-me-escape hole on others.
3. The 13th hole approach. The club is looking into making this hole more difficult for a reason. Players have a chance at eagle, and most every player attacks the green with his second shot.
2. The 18th hole green. This is nothing but stating the obvious. The pressure, and perhaps the tournament, boils over and culminates Sunday afternoon at this difficult green.
1. The 16th hole. Stands and hillsides of people surround this historic par 3. If the pin is nestled on the left side of the green, player will aim right and let the ball roll toward the pin (and the water).
They said what? (Quotes from 2016 Masters week)
5. “Some of my favorite memories were certainly back home, having a bunch of my friends over, and just kind of having the jacket on while you’re grilling out.” Jordan Spieth, on wearing the green jacket.
4. “As a fan, yes, as a player, no. I don’t like getting beat by Tiger all the time. I mean, it sucked.” Jason Day, on Tiger Woods’ absence from golf.
3. “As far as green jacket stories, for me, it’s just a great way to give the other guys grief, kind of give them a little jab here or there. I always like to rough up Dustin (Johnson). He’s just a great target.” — Phil Mickelson
2. “It won’t affect our ticket sales, I promise you that.” — Billy Payne, on the possibility of the PGA Championship moving to February in 2020 to make room for the Olympics.
1. Bryson DeChambeau, on naming his clubs: “So 1960, who won the Masters? (Arnold Palmer, nicknamed The King) So King is the name of my 60-degree wedge ... 1950, 50-degree wedge, Jimmy Demaret won in 1950, so I call him Jimmy. Kind of funny when you ask, hey, give me the Jimmy.”
My Picks To Win
5. Bubba Watson — He won in 2012 and 2014, could 2016 be in the cards?
4. Jason Day — He’s the world’s top-ranked player, and he’s played well in past Masters Tournaments.
3. Phil Mickelson — In his 24th Masters Tournament, he’s the beneficiary if the greens get fast on the weekend.
2. Rory McIlroy — Has the game suited for Augusta National.
1. Jordan Spieth — The next Augusta legend.