Rory McIlroy Is About to Redefine Dominance
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This is some pretty special golf we’re watching here.
Not just because the young man from Holywood, Northern Ireland, is treating the FedEx Cup playoffs and its select field like a run of Web.com Tour events.
No, Rory McIlroy has been beating down the best players at a time when many of them are playing their best.
Phil Mickelson, Robert Garrigus, Lee Westwood, Dustin Johnson, Adam Scott, Ryan Moore? When was the last time that group of guys was playing this well and congregating near the top of a leaderboard?
They were non-factors as McIlroy capped off a three-win in four starts stretch that has him firmly entrenched as the game’s best player with just the Tour Championship remaining on the 2012 schedule.
Think about that for a minute. Three wins in four starts, starting with the PGA Championship, followed by an off-week at the Barclays and then wins in the Deutsche Bank and BMW Championship.
In recent years, when Lee Westwood and Luke Donald ascended to the top spot in the World Golf Rankings, there was always a temporary feeling about the placement of those two. That feeling isn’t there with McIlroy.
This is the real deal, boys and guys. While the conservative approach might be that he’s only 23, he still has a lot to prove.
Well, that seems to be a bit silly at this point. The kid can play golf like very few other people on the planet. If you don’t think so, ask Robert Garrigus, who had the pleasure of playing with McIlroy Sunday.
"He's pretty awesome, isn't he?" Garrigus said in the media center after shooting 69 and finishing fourth. “It's kind of tough to sum up something like that. You make putts like that and hit it as straight as he does and got a good short game…It's kind of like Tiger was doing back in the day. It's pretty impressive.”
It’s difficult to compare eras in any sport. Heck, it’s difficult to compare what happened a dozen years ago to what’s happening now, but follow along for a minute.
This has been a great year for McIlroy with four wins, a pair of seconds and nine top-10 finishes. He’s made nearly $8 million and is definitely the Player of the Year on the PGA Tour.
Think about this, however.
Back in 2000, Woods teed it up in 20 events on Tour and made the cut in all 20. He won nine times for $9.1 million. He had a stretch during which he won seven of nine times. He won back-to-back once and won four in a row.
Those tidbits of information are not to diminish what McIlroy has accomplished this year. They are to display how dominance has been re-defined in the modern era. Byron Nelson won 11 straight tournaments and 18 times total in 1945. That was then, however, this is now.
Tiger showed us all what dominance means on today’s PGA Tour.
Here’s hoping Rory’s is in the early stages of yet another redefinition.
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