Dustin Johnson seems to be inching his way back to the PGA Tour, according to his swing coach, Butch Harmon.
Harmon said he recently worked with Johnson, who hasn’t played a Tour event since last year’s Canadian Open when he announced he was taking a leave of absence from the game, and that the 30-year-old has been earnestly preparing for his 2014-15 debut.
“He seems to have his head on straight and is in great shape,” Harmon said. “I think he’s going to start at Torrey Pines (the Farmers Insurance Open in February).”
Johnson’s manager, David Winkle, told GolfChannel.com on Tuesday his player’s return would be dictated by the birth of his first child, a boy who is due this month.
“His first priority is to make sure that (fiancé Paulina Gretzky) and the baby are good,” Winkle said via text message. “He will then return to competition as soon as possible.”
Golf.com reported in August that Johnson was serving a suspension following a failed drug test, but both Johnson and the Tour have denied that report.
Johnson’s lawsuit against a former advisor is also moving forward. U.S. District Court judge Leigh Martin May ruled on Tuesday that a motion to dismiss the case filed by the law firm of Morris-Schneider-Wittstadt was “moot,” while a second motion to dismiss is still pending in the case.
Mark and Gerard Wittstadt, who are partners at the firm, were named co- defendants along with Nathan Hardwick in the suit filed in October that alleges 17 counts of racketeering and fraud.