DJ, Gretzky grouped with Spieth at Pebble

By Will GrayFebruary 11, 2015, 1:34 pm

Dustin Johnson has had plenty of quality time recently with Wayne Gretzky, the father of his fiancee, Paulina, and grandfather to the couple's recently-born son, Tatum. The two will spend a few more hours together this week, though, as they team up again at the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am.

Johnson and Gretzky will play together in the pro-am portion of this week's event, and the pair will play the first three rounds alongside Jordan Spieth and his pro-am partner, country singer Jake Owen. The foursome will begin Thursday at 11:11 a.m. ET (8:11 a.m. local) at Monterey Peninsula, followed by rounds at Spyglass Hill and Pebble Beach Golf Links.

The format this week calls for all participants to play 54 holes, one round on each of the three courses in rotation. The final round will be played at Pebble Beach and will include the top 60 professionals and ties, plus the top 25 pro-am teams. Here is a look at a few other notable first-round tee times (all times ET). Click here for full-field tee times.

11:33 a.m. (Monterey, No. 1): Billy Hurley III/Andy Garcia, Ryan Armour/Ray Romano

Only at Pebble do you get groups where the amateurs are a bigger draw than the pros. Garcia and Romano are stars from movies and television, respectively, while Hurley and Armour have zero PGA Tour wins and 10 top-10 finishes between them.

11:55 a.m. (Monterey, No. 1): Jim Furyk/Huey Lewis, Nick Watney/Buster Posey

Furyk is making his 2014-15 season debut alongside the crooner, who will play without the help of The News. They're grouped with Watney, who grew up in Northern California, and Posey, who won his third World Series title last year with the San Francisco Giants.

11:55 a.m. (Monterey, No. 10): Ian Poulter/Kenny G, Matt Jones/Eric Close

Poulter draws Kenny G, a staple at this event who is listed this week as a 2 handicap. They'll play with Jones, who won the Shell Houston Open last year, and Close, an actor who has appeared in multiple network primetime dramas.

11:55 a.m. (Pebble Beach, No. 1): Jason Day/Jim Lentz, Michael Thompson/Bill Scannell

Fresh off his win at Torrey Pines, Day will begin with the host course this week alongside his amateur partner Lentz, an executive with Toyota. They'll be grouped with Thompson, who cracked the top 20 last week, and Scannell, a technology executive.

12:50 p.m. (Monterey, No. 1): Steven Bowditch/Larry the Cable Guy, Billy Horschel/Colt Ford

I'm not sure who I expected to pair up with Larry the Cable Guy, but the Aussie who won the Valero Texas Open in March would probably have been low on my list. Horschel pairs with Ford, who like Spieth's partner makes his living in country music.

Other notable pro-am pairings include John Daly with ESPN's Herm Edwards (11:44 a.m., Pebble), Chris Kirk with actor Josh Duhamel (12:17 p.m., Monterey), Jason Bohn with former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice (1:01 p.m., Spyglass) and D.A. Points with his regular partner, actor Bill Murray (12:06 p.m., Monterey).

@bubbawatson on Instagram

Bubba gets inked by Brooks, meets Tebow

By Grill Room TeamJune 18, 2018, 5:40 pm

Bubba Watson missed the cut at Shinnecock Hills following rounds of 77-74, but that didn't stop him from enjoying his weekend.

Watson played alongside Jason Day and eventual champion Brooks Koepka in Rounds 1 and 2, and somehow this body ink slipped by us on Thursday.

Got autographed by defending @usopengolf Champ @bkoepka!! #NeverShoweringAgain

A post shared by Bubba Watson (@bubbawatson) on

And while we're sure Bubba would have rather been in contention over the weekend, we're also sure that taking your son to meet the second most famous minor-league baseball player who ever lived was a lot more fun than getting your teeth kicked in by Shinnecock Hills over the weekend, as just about everyone not named Brooks Koepka and Tommy Fleetwood did.

Already in Hartford, Watson will be going for his third Travelers Championship trophy this week, following wins in 2010 and 2015.

Getty Images

Phil rubs fan's Donald Duck hat seven times, signs it

By Nick MentaJune 18, 2018, 3:09 pm

There is a case to be made that what Phil Mickelson did on Saturday made a mockery of a major championship and was worthy of derision.

There is also a case to be made that the USGA's setup of Shinnecock Hills made a mockery of a major championship and was worthy of derision.

Whatever you think about what Mickelson did on Saturday - and how he attempted to justify it after the fact without even a hint of remorse - watch this video.

The next time you hear someone say, "If anybody else had putted a moving ball on purpose and not apologized for it, it would get a different reaction," you can point to this video and say, "Yeah, here's why."

Here's what happened once a still-strident Mickelson was done rubbing Donald Duck hats on Sunday, per Ryan Lavner:

If you’re wondering whether Mickelson would be defiant or contrite on Sunday, we don’t know the answer. He declined to stop and speak with the media, deciding instead to sign autographs for more than a half hour and then offering a few short answers before ducking into player hospitality.

“The real question is, ‘What am I going to do next?’” he said. “I don’t know.”

The 2024 Ryder Cup at Bethpage is going to be a three-ring circus, and Mickelson, a likely choice to captain the U.S. team, will be the ringmaster.

Separately, shoutout to 2017 Latin Am champ Toto Gana, who does a terrific Donald Duck (skip to end).

Getty Images

Ryder Cup race: Mickelson out, Simpson in

By Will GrayJune 18, 2018, 2:34 pm

There's a new man at the top of the U.S. Ryder Cup race following the U.S. Open, and there's also a familiar name now on the outside looking in.

Brooks Koepka's successful title defense vaulted him to the top of the American points race, up four spots and ensuring he'll be on the team Jim Furyk takes to Paris in September. Dustin Johnson's third-place finish moved him past Patrick Reed at No. 2, while Webb Simpson entered the top eight after a a tie for 10th.

While Bryson DeChambeau remained at No. 9, Phil Mickelson dropped two spots to No. 10. Tony Finau, who finished alone in fifth, went from 16th to 13th, while Tiger Woods fell two spots to No. 37.

Here's a look at the latest U.S. standings, with the top eight after the PGA Championship qualifying automatically:

1. Brooks Koepka

2. Dustin Johnson

3. Patrick Reed

4. Justin Thomas

5. Jordan Spieth

6. Rickie Fowler

7. Bubba Watson

8. Webb Simpson


9. Bryson DeChambeau

10. Phil Mickelson

11. Matt Kuchar

12. Brian Harman

On the European side, England's Tommy Fleetwood took a big stride toward securing his first Ryder Cup appearance with a runner-up finish that included a Sunday 63 while countryman Matthew Fitzpatrick snuck into a qualifying spot after tying for 12th.

Here's a look at the updated Euro standings, with the top four from both points lists joining four picks from captain Thomas Bjorn at Le Golf National:

European Points

1. Tyrrell Hatton

2. Justin Rose

3. Tommy Fleetwood

4. Francesco Molinari


5. Thorbjorn Olesen

6. Ross Fisher

World Points

1. Jon Rahm

2. Rory McIlroy

3. Alex Noren

4. Matthew Fitzpatrick


5. Ian Poulter

6. Rafael Cabrera-Bello

@jenamsims on Instagram

Koepka autographs local kids' 'Go Brooks' sign after win

By Grill Room TeamJune 18, 2018, 2:30 pm

Brooks Koepka is a two-time U.S. Open winner, but that doesn't mean he's now too big to go sign a couple pieces of cardboard in somebody's front yard in the middle of the night.

Koepka's girlfriend, Jena Sims, posted two pictures to her Instagram story on Sunday of "Go Brooks" signs she says were put up by some local kids in the area where Koepka was staying for the week.

The first is dated prior to Koepka's final-round tee time.

The second is from Sunday night.

And here, separately, for no reason in particular (other than the fact that she posted it) is a video of Sims running over a parking cone at last year's U.S. Open at Erin Hills.

Speaking of kids, just feels those two are gonna make it.