Photo Credit: Waste Management Phoenix Open
The Waste Management Open is here and I am very excited about it. This tournament is certainly in the conversation for the best non-major (and Players) on the PGA Tour. For those of you who aren’t familiar with this tournament, it is the highest attended event in all of golf and it is hosted annually at TPC Scottsdale which is home to one of the best holes in golf.
The 16th hole at TPC Scottsdale is the only hole in golf that is surrounded by grandstands and is basically a miniature stadium. In addition, fans at the 16th hole are allowed to be as loud as they want. Most of the fans have been boozing all day and are insanely rowdy. If you want to get a glimpse of what this hole is like, look up “1997 Phoenix Open Tiger Woods hole in one”. This is one of the coolest moments in golf history and it took place at the 16th hole here at TPC Scottsdale (before they built the stadium around the hole).
There will certainly be some great moments this week in Arizona, and if someone gets a hole in one at the 16th then you can expect to see thousands of fans screaming like crazy and throwing their beers onto the hole.
The favorite to win this week is Jon Rahm. As an Arizona State alumni, he will be one of the crowd favorites this week, and he is coming off of a great showing last week at the Farmers Insurance Open. Other common picks to win are Hideki Matsuyama, Justin Thomas, and Xander Schauffele. In addition, if reigning champ Gary Woodland can play as well as he has so far in 2019 he will have a good chance at defending his title. However, I predict Rickie Fowler to get his first PGA Tour win in almost two years this week. Rickie has been runner-up here twice before and will be eager to get back into the winner’s circle.