Country Club New Bedford

The 2018 Waste Management Phoenix Open

The PGA Tour is headed to Arizona for the Waste Management Phoenix OpenJ from January 29-February 4. The tournament takes place at TPC Scottsdale in Scottsdale, Arizona, at the Stadium Course. This PGA stop boasts the largest attendance on tour and it is an audience participation event, especially on the 16th hole. This hole can be considered the most famous hole on the tour. And the audience? Well to get a better idea of the attendance, consider the 207,000 fans attending last year…just on Saturday.

This year’s field is as talented as its ever been, featuring five of the top 10 players in the Official World Golf Ranking, including world No. 5 Hideki Matsuyama, who with a victory can become the first player since Arnold Palmer to win the event three consecutive times. It would also make him the fifth three-time winner in the tournament’s history, joining the likes of Palmer, Phil Mickelson, Mark Calcavecchia and Gene Littler. Others include Jordan Spieth, Rickie Fowler and Justin Thomas. 

The best part about this event? 

A live 360 and VR experience will be available for all four rounds of this week’s Waste Management Phoenix Open. Similar to the TOUR’s Live VR events in 2017, this week’s coverage can be viewed globally in “360 video” on Twitter (twitter.com/PGATOUR), as well as through Samsung Gear VR via the “PGA TOUR VR Live” app.

Fans can now watch live in both 360 video and Cardboard VR via the PGA TOUR app on iOS. The “PGA TOUR VR Live” app will also launch on Daydream by Google – available on the Google Play Store – all at the Waste Management Phoenix Open. As the exclusive live virtual reality provider of the PGA TOUR, Intel will produce the live VR experience with Intel True VR technology, providing unprecedented access to areas on the course that can’t be experienced, even by fans on-site.

“The 16th hole at TPC Scottsdale during the Waste Management Phoenix Open is one of the most exciting in golf,” said Rick Anderson, PGA TOUR Chief Media Officer. “We look forward to bringing that excitement to our fans who can’t physically be at the tournament through live virtual reality. They will be able to experience all the thrills from home.” 

TV Coverage

The Golf Channel will carry live coverage on Thursday and Friday from 3 p.m. ET to 7 p.m. ET. CBS will take over on the weekend beginning at 3 p.m. ET.

The Next Vokey Wedge is Here

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In the world of golf, there are a lot of factors that come into scoring well and one of the biggest factors are wedges.

Spinning a ball into the green and putting it close to the pin is vital.

One of the best wedges for years on local courses and the PGA Tour has been Titleist’s line of Vokey wedges.

Bob Vokey has long been designing some of the best wedges to hit this earth.

The Vokey line has grown in popularity year in and year out and you see many people still playing the older Vokey’s.

The newest one is almost here. The Vokey SM7 will be getting its first look on course this week at the Shriners Hospital for Children Open at TPC Summerlin.

These are not the finished product. They are rolling out the SM7 prototypes this week and Titleist loyalists Justin Thomas, Jordan Spieth and others will have these wedges in their bags.

“We design the best product possible and take it to the tour. If the tour players accept it, then we say this must be awfully good.”- Bob Vokey.

If you own or have seen last years’ version, the SM6 it was a very sleek looking wedge.

But this year, according to prototype pictures, has a different look, but it may be a little simpler and better looking.

This year’s rendition still has the signature gear in the corner, the BV with the wings and the Titleist logo.

One noticeable difference, that may only be on the prototype is the SM7 logo is just below the BV logo and it makes it look very clean and simple. On the SM6 it was off to the side, tucked in the corner.

Another year, another inevitably great Vokey wedge.

Other companies have tried their hand at wedges, but Vokey remains at the top.

Justin Thomas is my Player of the Year

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Winning the player of the year award in any sport is pretty impressive. 

To get that, you have to do something historic or be the best player in the league by a lot. This season in the NBA we saw Russell Westbrook average a triple double and win the NBA MVP. So you could say that winning five tour events in one season would be a solid campaign for the MVP.

I think it is, and it is not disputable. Starting off the season with a few wins at the early year events seemed cool for JT. Get some wins under your belt and get geared up for a long year.But when he won the PGA Championship it opened a whole new can of worms.

Winning a major compared to a “pre season” event gives you an entire different look to your resume. In a major everybody is playing at the top of their game and the course itself are such a tough setup it takes you’re A game to win. After that, he added yet another win. In the Fed Ex Playoffs even.

To win five PGA Tour events in your life is one thing, but to do it in a year is amazing. I think Justin Thomas had the best year on the PGA Tour.

I would argue he is the unanimous player of the year, but I have Spieth a close second and I think the voters may give him a few votes. Between the unreal Open performance, we will be talking about for years. And not to mention his bunker shot in our backyard in Connecticut that may go down as the shot of the year.

Justin Thomas may not have had the most memorable shot of the year, but he has had the best year and deserves to win player of the year.

Oh and there is two events left, anything is possible.

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