Hawaii Golf Soothes Winter Blues
by Jeff Skinner
The weather forecast for the Hudson Valley today is for temperatures in single digits, wind chill below zero and a foot of snow. Not exactly golfing weather. But all is not lost as we’ll be treated to some golf, Hawaiian style as the PGA Tour starts 2014 with the Hyundai Tournament of Champions from Kapalua, Maui, Hawaii.
Thirty victorious golfers from last season will trek over the hilly Plantation course and many still feel that this is the start of the season. “What I feel isn’t exactly real, which is fine, I guess” said Zach Johnson. “This is the Tournament of Champions. This starts the year. The season is now something else. But to me, this feels like a new season.”
Fry’s.com Open winner Jimmy Walker feels the same, “I’ve always looked at Hawaii as the start of the season, and I guess that’s how I still feel deep down.”
Masters Champion Adam Scott leads the field and will be teamed with defending champion Dustin Johnson as six of the top sixteen golfers in the world spend a week on Maui.
Jordan Spieth leads a strong contingent of youngsters all under 25 years old. In addition to Spieth, Patrick Reed, Derek Ernst, Russell Henley and Harris English are all making their TOC debut.
First time winner Ken Duke makes his first start and 49 year old Woody Austin are representing the old guys of the PGA Tour. Matt Kuchar, Webb Simpson, Brandt Snedeker, Gary Woodland, Jason Dufner and Jonas Blixt are a few of the big names that will give us plenty of excitement for the next four nights.
The Golf Channel will have a prime time showcase starting on Friday and finishing on Monday so we all can watch the gorgeous shots from Hawaii.
Broadcast times: Friday, 5:30-10 p.m. ET (Golf Channel). Saturday, 2:30-7 p.m. (GC). Sunday, 3-4 p.m. (NBC), 4-10 p.m. (GC). Monday, 4-8 p.m. (GC).