AVONDALE, La. – Lucas Glover was buzzing after his opening 7-under 65 at the Zurich Classic, mostly because he made all of his short putts. Those misses have threatened to curtail his career.
He ranks 182nd in strokes gained-putting.
From inside 5 feet, he is 183rd on Tour, making only 92.76 percent of his attempts.
From 5 to 10 feet, he ranks 179th, with a 43.88 percent conversion rate.
“It’s the only reason I haven’t been playing well,” the 2009 U.S. Open champion said Thursday.
Last October, he reached out to Dave Stockton Jr. for an assist. Glover wanted to get back to basics, to putt like he had as a junior and college player, when his clubface had little rotation and he put more weight on his left foot.
For “a year and a half,” Glover said, he has struggled to convert the short ones.
Just how short?
“Short enough where you might not mark them,” he said, adding that he had missed at least one each round. “Short enough where everybody who’s been playing with me says, ‘Heh, how’d you miss that?’ Seriously, it’s been an issue.”
But there were no such worries Thursday, when he took advantage of lift, clean and place conditions and matched his low round of the year. He has only one top 10 this year (T-4 at Honda), and has missed three cuts in his last four starts.
“When you putt poorly,” he said, “it just works backward. Everything is affected. It’s hard to play golf like that.
“So I’m going to enjoy this, because I might miss some tomorrow.”