CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Dustin Johnson was never going remove another golf tournament.
This was only 4 months ago.
Johnson — buoyed by his 2016 U.S. Open win, his initial career vital championship feat — won a Genesis Open in February, elevating himself to No. 1 in a world. Then he won a WGC-Mexico Championship, and afterwards a WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play.
Next adult was a Masters in April. Johnson arrived to Augusta carrying won a prior 3 tournaments he played. No one was going to kick him during a Masters. Not with Johnson on a towering run of form he was on. Not with how distant he hits a ball, and with Augusta so welcoming to a large hitters.
Johnson was staid — unfailing — to turn a two-time vital leader in a dizzying camber of 10 months.
And afterwards he slipped and fell down a stairs during a residence he was renting in Augusta, tweaking his behind and forcing him to repel from a Masters.
And we radically have not seen Johnson anywhere within a nation mile of that pre-Masters form since.
Johnson — as he tries to recapture his mojo in this week’s PGA Championship during a Quail Hollow march that is so jam-packed from sleet it will play right into his hands since it’ll play so most longer than a 7,600 yards — is a 6-foot-4 walking billboard for how variable and passing success in golf can be.
As shortly as we consider you’ve got it figured out, we don’t. That goes for all levels and all ages. The diversion does not discriminate.
“It is frustrating what happened when we was personification so well, though there’s zero we can do about that,’’ Johnson said. “Things occur [and] you’ve only got to understanding with them. we feel like a golf game’s in unequivocally good figure right now. I’ve got a lot of certainty in a diversion right now and what I’m doing. It’s tighten to being as good as it was as I’ve been in a prolonged time.
“I feel like it’s unequivocally tighten to being behind to how good it was before a Masters.’’
Johnson was asked, if his form was a “10’’ entering a Masters, where was it when he came behind after a injury?
“Three,’’ he said.
When he was reminded he indeed finished tied for second during a Wells Fargo Championship in May in his initial contest behind after a injury, Johnson pronounced a outcome was not a loyal indicator of how he played and his diversion “wasn’t that good.”
“Then,’’ he pronounced “it went down and got worse after that.’’
Johnson tied for 12th during a Players Championship, tied for 13th during a ATT Byron Nelson and afterwards missed a cut during a Memorial and a U.S. Open before a tie for 54th during a British Open, a tie for eighth during a RBC Canadian Open and a tie for 17th final week during a WGC-Bridgestone.
Asked where he would rate his form entering a PGA, Johnson said, “I feel like I’m about an eight-and-a-half right now.’’
“Obviously, we had a lot of confidence,’’ Johnson pronounced of his pre-Masters form. “I’d only won 3 large events in a quarrel and we was personification as good golf as I’ve ever played — consistently each day. we was as good as we ever felt and certainty substantially as high as it’s ever been.
“But, things happen. Just when we feel like we get on top, something happens that knocks we down.’’
This is a doctrine each golfer eventually learns, since no one — not even those who are ranked No. 1 in a universe and strike 300-yard drives with their eyes sealed — is immune.
“But I’m fighting behind right now and we feel like a game’s as good as it was before [the Masters],’’ Johnson said. “I’m going to continue to work tough on it and hopefully we’re going to have a good week [and] I’ll be there on Sunday.’’