This time last year, Paul Goydos, Bryce Molder and Alex Prugh absolutely loathed the 14th hole at Pebble Beach after they all scored dreadful nines, effectively closing the door on their chances of winning the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am.
But a year later, on the same exact hole, a door opened for D.A. Points.
The no-name native of Illinois pinged a gap-wedge from the fairway that, with a little luck and gust from the golf gods, skipped off the top of the green-side bunker and rolled into the cup for an extraordinary eagle.
Then, between sinking a 30-foot, bending birdie putt on the next hole and the relaxed atmosphere created by comedic playing partner Bill Murray, Points coasted to his first PGA Tour victory.
Unfortunately, the AT&T Pro-Am did everything golf fans despise—it confused us.
Phil Mickelson, a major champion, the highest ranked player in the field and one of the favorites to win, was unable to make a late charge as a bevy of relatively unknowns crawled up the leaderboard. Dustin Johnson, who has won this event each of the last two years, barely made it to the weekend, struggling to an even-par, T55 finish.
All this on the same weekend that Tiger Woods tanked terribly in his final round at the Dubai Desert Classic after starting Sunday within a stroke of the leader.
In 2010, parity nestled its way into the fabric of the PGA Tour, sending golf fans into their version of the twilight zone. So far this season, Byrd soared at Kapalua, there’s already been two first-time winners (Vegas, Points) and Mark Wilson has won twice. What else did we learn from Pebble?