Punch Shot: How many majors wins for Scott?

By Golf Channel DigitalApril 16, 2013, 3:50 pm

Adam Scott earned his first - and long-awaited - major title at the 77th Masters Tournament. Will this open the major floodgates for Scott or is he one and done? GolfChannel.com writers weigh in with their thoughts on how many majors Scott will win in his career.



Adam Scott’s ball-striking will give him a chance in every tournament he enters, and it’ll be those rare weeks when he marries that long-game prowess with a hot flatstick that he’ll bag another major title. This year’s British Open, for instance, presents another ideal opportunity. But there is reason for concern. First, the potential anchoring ban could curb his upside – from 2008-10, before he switched to the broom-handle putter, he ranked no better than 178th in strokes gained-putting. An adjustment period looms. And secondly, this Masters victory will bring a new level of celebrity, and deservedly so. How he adjusts to the distractions and the attention and the new off-course opportunities will determine if he’ll be more than an immensely talented one-hit wonder. 



At the risk of dulling the shine that has been cast by Adam Scott’s inspiring victory on Sunday at Augusta National, estimates that this triumph will open the floodgates to more major glory feel greatly exaggerated.

We give the Australian one more Grand Slam, not because he’s not talented or driven enough to collect them like candy, but because golf’s competitive landscape is set to shift dramatically in the next few months, if not weeks.

The USGA and R&A are expected to rule on anchoring and the fate of the long putter seems bleak following Scott’s victory. Augusta National was perched on the fence when asked about the impending decision last week, but that indifference may change now that Scott completed the “Anchoring Slam.”

With a monsoon of respect for Scott, he did not “putt” his way to a green jacket. For the week, he finished 39th in putting and first in greens in regulation.

As good as Scott is Tee to Green, his putting with a conventional putter is suspect at best. Prior to 2011 when he switched to the broom-handle putter he had ranked outside the top 175 in strokes gained-putting the previous three seasons. This year he is 80th in that category.

Scott is talented enough to win many more majors, but he may be running out of time.



“Surely, this will open the floodgates for him.”

It feels like the de facto response anytime a top-ranked player finally breaks through with a major triumph. Adam Scott has demonstrated the ability to win multiple top-tier events, now including a major. Becoming the sixth player since 2001 to win a second major, though, may be easier said than done.

With the recency bias in full effect, it can appear as though the question for the 32-year-old Aussie is not if he will win another major, but how many he will ultimately bring home. Consider this, though – countryman Steve Elkington was 32 years old when he won the 1995 PGA Championship. Likewise, Fred Couples was 32 when his ball stopped on the bank of Rae’s Creek at the 1992 Masters. Jim Furyk, Ian Woosnam and Davis Love III were all 33 years old when they finally captured an elusive major title. At the time of their wins, each of these men appeared destined to capture multiple majors, but years later each has only his maiden triumph to his credit.

The game right now has a deeper talent pool at the top than it has in years, as evidenced by the fact that the last 18 majors have been won by 17 different players, and if anything, last year’s British Open demonstrated just how easily a win can slip away. For Scott specifically, a likely switch back to a conventional putter in the near future may also require an untold period of adjustment. So while it would not surprise me to see him add another major trophy to his green jacket, at this point I predict that when he looks back on his career, this past week will remain both his greatest achievement and his lone major title.



There's a question that gets asked anytime a talented player claims his first major championship: Now that he has one, will the floodgates open?

I've got news for those questioners. The floodgates are closed. For everyone.

In case you haven't been paying attention, 18 different players have accounted for the last 19 majors. Nobody is winning majors in bunches.

On the heels of his Masters win, expect Adam Scott to follow suit. Don't get me wrong. He's a terrific player. Just don't count on him winning, say, three of the next six.

In fact, I've got him taking just two more in his career. On the heels of Sunday's success, that may sound like an insult, but it isn't. Three career wins would put him in a class just behind Phil Mickelson and Ernie Els, equal to Vijay Singh and Padraig Harrington. A better comparison is that he may wind up being this generation's Billy Casper, which is high praise indeed.

Floodgates? Nope, they're closed – at least for now. But Scott will win a few more majors before his career is over. 



Adam Scott won’t be “one and done” winning major championships, but just how many he wins probably depends on whether anchored putting is banned.

Pencil me in for one more green jacket for Scott if anchored putting is banished, two more if he can keep using that broomstick-handle putter. He’s now in that class of players whom Augusta National anoints as regular contenders. At 32, he will keep giving himself chances. 

Since Scott began using a long putter, his major championship record has dramatically improved. He tied for second at the Masters in 2011, the first time he put a long putter into play in a major. He hasn’t finished outside the top 10 there with it. He has finished T-9 or better five times in the last nine majors with it. That’s more top-10s than he had in the previous 39 majors he played.

Given his ball-striking prowess, his age and growing confidence now, Scott looks like a guy who could win two to five major championship titles, depending on what happens with the rules governing his putting.

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More sun, dry conditions expected early at Open

By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 18, 2018, 9:14 am

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – An atypically dry Scottish summer is expected to continue this week at The Open.

There’s a possibility of a few showers Thursday and Friday, but otherwise conditions are expected to remain dry with temperatures around 70 degrees and winds in the 15-20 mph range.

The forecast for the opening round at Carnoustie is sunshine with clouds developing later in the day. The high is expected to be around 70 degrees, with winds increasing throughout the day, maxing out at 18 mph.

Full-field tee times from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

There’s a chance of rain overnight Thursday and into Friday morning, but it’s not expected to slow down the fiery conditions.

It’s been one of the driest summers in recent memory, leading to fairways that are baked out and fescue rough that is lighter and thinner than in previous years.

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How to watch The Open on TV and online

By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 18, 2018, 8:40 am

You want to watch the 147th Open? Here’s how you can do it.

Golf Channel and NBC Sports will be televising 182 hours of overall programming from the men's third major of the year at Carnoustie

In addition to the traditional coverage, the two networks will showcase three live alternate feeds: marquee groups, featured holes (our new 3-hole channel) and spotlight action. You can also watch replays of full-day coverage, Thursday-Sunday, in the Golf Channel app, NBC Sports apps, and on GolfChannel.com.  

Here’s the weekly TV schedule, with live stream links in parentheses. You can view all the action on the Golf Channel mobile, as well. Alternate coverage is noted in italics:

(All times Eastern; GC=Golf Channel; NBC=NBC Sports; GC.com=GolfChannel.com or check the GLE app)

Monday, July 16

GC: 7-9AM: Morning Drive (stream.golfchannel.com)

GC: 9-11AM: Live From The Open (www.golfchannel.com/livefromstream)

GC: 7-9PM: Live From The Open (www.golfchannel.com/livefromstream)

Tuesday, July 17

GC: 6AM-2PM: Live From The Open (www.golfchannel.com/livefromstream)

Wednesday, July 18

GC: 6AM-2PM: Live From The Open (www.golfchannel.com/livefromstream)

Thursday, July 19

GC: Midnight-1:30AM: Midnight Drive (stream.golfchannel.com)

GC: Day 1: The Open, live coverage: 1:30AM-4PM (www.golfchannel.com/theopen)

GC.com: Day 1: The Open, Spotlight: 1:30AM-4PM (www.golfchannel.com/spotlight)

GC.com: Day 1: The Open, Marquee Groups: 4AM-3PM (www.golfchannel.com/marqueegroup)

GC.com: Day 1: The Open, 3-Hole Channel: 4AM-3PM (www.golfchannel.com/3holechannel)

GC: Live From The Open: 4-5PM (www.golfchannel.com/livefromstream)

Friday, July 20

GC: Day 2: The Open, live coverage: 1:30AM-4PM (www.golfchannel.com/theopen)

GC.com: Day 2: The Open, Spotlight: 1:30AM-4PM (www.golfchannel.com/spotlight)

GC.com: Day 2: The Open, Marquee Groups: 4AM-3PM (www.golfchannel.com/marqueegroup)

GC.com: Day 2: The Open, 3-Hole Channel: 4AM-3PM (www.golfchannel.com/3holechannel)

GC: Live From The Open: 4-5PM (www.golfchannel.com/livefromstream)

Saturday, July 21

GC: Day 3: The Open, live coverage: 4:30-7AM (www.golfchannel.com/theopen)

NBC: Rd. 3: The Open, live coverage: 7AM-3PM (www.golfchannel.com/theopen)

GC.com: Day 3: The Open, Spotlight: 4:30AM-3PM (www.golfchannel.com/spotlight)

GC.com: Day 3: The Open, Marquee Groups: 5AM-3PM (www.golfchannel.com/marqueegroup)

GC.com: Day 3: The Open, 3-Hole Channel: 5AM-3PM (www.golfchannel.com/3holechannel)

GC: Live From The Open: 3-4PM (www.golfchannel.com/livefromstream)

Sunday, July 22

GC: Day 4: The Open, live coverage: 4:30-7AM (www.golfchannel.com/theopen)

NBC: Rd. 4: The Open, live coverage: 7AM-2:30PM (www.golfchannel.com/theopen)

GC.com: Day 4: The Open, Spotlight: 4:30AM-2:30PM (www.golfchannel.com/spotlight)

GC.com: Day 4: The Open, Marquee Groups: 5AM-2PM (www.golfchannel.com/marqueegroup)

GC.com: Day 4: The Open, 3-Hole Channel: 5AM-2PM (www.golfchannel.com/3holechannel)

GC: Live From The Open: 2:30-4PM (www.golfchannel.com/livefromstream)

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The Open 101: A guide to the year's third major

By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 18, 2018, 8:30 am

Take a look at some answers to frequently asked questions about The Open:

What's all this "The Open" stuff? I thought it was the British Open.

What you call it has historically depended on where you were. If you were in the U.S., you called it the British Open, just as Europeans refer to the PGA Championship as the U.S. PGA. Outside the U.S. it generally has been referred to as The Open Championship. The preferred name of the organizers is The Open.

How old is it?

It's the oldest golf championship, dating back to 1860.

Where is it played?

There is a rotation – or "rota" – of courses used. Currently there are 10: Royal Birkdale, Royal St. George's, Royal Liverpool and Royal Lytham and St. Annes, all in England; Royal Portrush in Northern Ireland and St. Andrews, Carnoustie, Royal Troon, Turnberry and Muirfield, all in Scotland. Muirfield was removed from the rota in 2016 when members voted against allowing female members, but when the vote was reversed in 2017 it was allowed back in.

Where will it be played this year?

At Carnoustie, which is located on the south-eastern shore of Scotland.

Who has won The Open on that course?

Going back to the first time Carnoustie hosted, in 1931, winners there have been Tommy Armour, Henry Cotton (1937), Ben Hogan (1953), Gary Player (1968), Tom Watson (1975), Paul Lawrie (1999), Padraig Harrington (2007).

Wasn't that the year Hogan nearly won the Slam?

Yep. He had won the Masters and U.S. Open that season, then traveled to Carnoustie and won that as well. It was the only time he ever played The Open. He was unable to play the PGA Championship that season because the dates conflicted with those of The Open.

Jean Van de Velde's name should be on that list, right?

This is true. He had a three-shot lead on the final hole in 1999 and made triple bogey. He lost in a playoff to Lawrie, which also included Justin Leonard.

Who has won this event the most?

Harry Vardon, who was from the Channel Island of Jersey, won a record six times between 1896 and 1914. Australian Peter Thomson, American Watson, Scot James Braid and Englishman J.H. Taylor each won five times.

What about the Morrises?

Tom Sr. won four times between 1861 and 1867. His son, Tom Jr., also won four times, between 1868 and 1872.

Have players from any particular country dominated?

In the early days, Scots won the first 29 Opens – not a shocker since they were all played at one of three Scottish courses, Prestwick, St. Andrews and Musselburgh. In the current era, going back to 1999 (we'll explain why that year in a minute), the scoreboard is United States, nine wins; South Africa, three wins; Ireland, two wins; Northern Ireland, two wins; and Sweden, one win. The only Scot to win in that period was Lawrie, who took advantage of one of the biggest collapses in golf history.

Who is this year's defending champion?

That would be American Jordan Spieth, who survived an adventerous final round to defeat Matt Kuchar by three strokes and earn the third leg of the career Grand Slam.

What is the trophy called?

The claret jug. It's official name is the Golf Champion Trophy, but you rarely hear that used. The claret jug replaced the original Challenge Belt in 1872. The winner of the claret jug gets to keep it for a year, then must return it (each winner gets a replica to keep).

Which Opens have been the most memorable?

Well, there was Palmer in 1961and '62; Van de Velde's collapse in 1999; Hogan's win in 1953; Tiger Woods' eight-shot domination of the 2000 Open at St. Andrews; Watson almost winning at age 59 in 2009; Doug Sanders missing what would have been a winning 3-foot putt at St. Andrews in 1970; Tony Jacklin becoming the first Briton to win the championship in 18 years; and, of course, the Duel in the Sun at Turnberry in 1977, in which Watson and Jack Nicklaus dueled head-to-head over the final 36 holes, Watson winning by shooting 65-65 to Nicklaus' 65-66.

When I watch this tournament on TV, I hear lots of unfamiliar terms, like "gorse" and "whin" and "burn." What do these terms mean?

Gorse is a prickly shrub, which sometimes is referred to as whin. Heather is also a shrub. What the scots call a burn, would also be considered a creek or stream.