Swing and Swish: PGA tour tees off new year

Sports Editor Mike Moxley discusses current events and issues in basketball and golf. Reading this column will keep you caught up with your favorite teams and players.


The 2015-16 PGA Tour season has started off in an unfamiliar way. New faces winning tournaments are just the beginning. 14 tournaments have been completed so far this season, with 13 different winners.

This season started  at the Frys.com Open from Oct. 15-18 with an unfamiliar face, Emiliano Grillo, winning his first tournament in only his eighth start in the Tour. Grillo is 23 years old and has played in the European Tour the past few seasons.

One thing that has remained constant is the play of golf’s number one, Jordan Spieth. Already with one win, Spieth is playing solid golf every time out.

Other winners so far this season include Bubba Watson, Jason Dufner, and Graeme McDowell. Watson won Tiger Woods’ Hero Challenge Dec. 3-6. Dufner, accompanied by Brandt Snedeker, won the match play in the Franklin Templeton Shootout Dec. 10-12. Dufner also won the CareerBuilder Challenge in partnership with the Clinton Foundation Jan. 21-24, and Snedeker won the Farmers Insurance Open Jan. 28-31.

Some names you haven’t heard of this year winning so far are Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy. Woods is sidelined with a back injury, and McIlroy just has not played well.

McIlroy’s first two Tour finishes are 11 at the World-Golf-Championships and 26 at the Frys.com Open. This is very unlike McIlroy and is not the start he wanted.

Another golfer who is not having the year they want is Jim Furyk. Furyk is 45 years old and recently has had pain in his wrist. According to GolfChannel, he will be out around 3 months.

This return date is close to the Masters, and it will be tough for him to get back to full strength by then. The Masters is roughly in nine weeks. Both Furyk and Woods are trying to get back by then to play in the biggest tournament of the year.

A golfer who is looking for his first win of 2016 is another 45-year-old. Phil Mickelson has competed in two events and finished third in the CareerBuilder Challenge. He also competed in the Farmers Insurance Open and failed to make the cut. Mickelson will compete in the Waste Management Open this coming weekend, and Arizona is a special place for him.

He went to Arizona State University and is always vocal about how much he loves playing this tournament. Mickelson has won twice and most recently won in 2013 by four strokes.

The season is three months young, and the top golfers, like Mickelson, consider the Masters the start of their PGA Tour season.

Mike Moxley is a Sports Editor for The Patriot and jcpatriot.com.