But a biggest shot in golf history? Please.
That’s what Golf Channel researcher Brandel Chamblee called Johnson’s large drive, amid a sharp-witted Twitter discuss a past few days. Chamblee sparked a conversation, creatively inventory his “10 favorite shots ever strike on a PGA Tour” and putting Johnson’s during No. 1.
This was reasonable — a expostulate soared distant into a distance, took a large hop, zoomed downhill on a 433-yard par-4 and astonishingly came to rest a few inches brief of a hole. And who are we to decider Chamblee’s all-time favorite shots?
Then, prodded by doubtful tweets in response, Chamblee unquestionably called it a “greatest shot ever hit.” And that sent a whole thing spinning extravagantly into another realm.
First, some context: Chamblee is a smart, provocative analyst. He’s gallant to voice his opinion, even if it means criticizing a pitch of Tiger Woods. Chamblee, a former PGA Tour pro, clearly knows a game.
Still, he became carried divided on this one. Johnson is a energy hitter in a era tangible by crazy stretch off a tee, and he hold this expostulate positively flush. Cool, memorable, amazing, rarely entertaining.
But a “greatest shot ever” doesn’t start in a 34-man margin on a initial Sunday in January, while cruising with a five-stroke lead. This was not a final turn of a Masters or U.S. Open. This was not even tighten to a biggest theatre in golf.
Johnson showed off his energy and accuracy, yes, though his tee shot also benefited from a accessible rebound and roll. Let’s be honest: He only hoped a turn would finish adult somewhere on a green, withdrawal him an eagle putt.
Given a circumstances, Tom Watson’s chip-in on a 71st hole of a 1982 U.S. Open during Pebble Beach — to kick Jack Nicklaus — springs to mind as a biggest shot ever. Or Woods’ extraordinary chip-in on a 70th hole of a 2005 Masters. Or Larry Mize’s playoff chip-in to win a 1987 Masters.
Among full-swing candidates, Nicklaus tops my list with his final-round, wind-shaped 1-iron off a 17th flagstick to set adult a tap-in birdie and bind a ’72 Open during Pebble. Or Phil Mickelson off a hunger straw — around a tree and over a rivulet — on No. 13 in a final turn of a 2010 Masters. Or Birdie Kim’s hole-out from a fort to win a ’05 U.S. Women’s Open.
All those players faced vigour and consequences distant larger than what Johnson did on his Hawaiian stroll. His expostulate was amazing, though it’s also not a biggest shot ever. No way.
Tiger’s schedule: Woods will make his 2018 entrance this month in San Diego, though here’s another applicable doubt to consider: Will he finally play in a PGA Tour eventuality in Napa this year?
Woods, as we competence recall, announced he would play in a Safeway Open in Oct 2016. Then he abruptly withdrew on a Monday of contest week, observant his diversion was not prepared for competition.
Woods eventually had his fourth behind medicine in Apr 2017, returned for final month’s Hero World Challenge in a Bahamas and now will make his central PGA Tour lapse Jan. 25 during Torrey Pines. If he stays healthy, he’s approaching to tee it adult during Silverado Resort in October.
He’s thankful to play in a Napa contest given of a prior agreement with a PGA Tour. Woods and 7 other important players skipped a 2012 Frys.com Open during CordeValle (since renamed and changed to Silverado Resort) for a remunerative muster eventuality in Turkey. The debate postulated them a recover on a condition they play in a Frys during slightest once in a subsequent 3 years.
Those other 7 golfers — Rory McIlroy, Justin Rose, Matt Kuchar, Lee Westwood, Webb Simpson, Hunter Mahan and Charl Schwartzel — all played in Napa in 2014 or ’15.
Jon Rahm jumped to No. 3 in a universe ranking after his runner-up finish in Maui. Rahm became a fourth-youngest actor to moment a tip three, behind Woods, McIlroy and Jordan Spieth. Nice company. … Registration for a 2018 San Francisco City Championship ends Monday. Golfers can register during sfgolfchampionship.com. Qualifying starts in mid-February, and a contest (held mostly on weekends) runs by Mar 18.
Ron Kroichick is a San Francisco Chronicle staff writer. Email: email@example.com Twitter: @ronkroichick