Michael Breed - September 11, 2012

By Morning Drive TeamSeptember 11, 2012, 12:19 pm

Michael Breed is the host of The Golf Fix on Golf Channel and is the 2012 PGA of America Teacher of the Year. He has been involved in sports for much of his life and in fact was a competitive squash player as a teenager. When he first got involved in golf, he wanted to play and then he decided to become a teacher. He has had the chance to work at Augusta National among other great clubs and it was Darrell Kestner who gave him his big break. Once he began teaching, he saw the positive impact that he was having on other people and he knew that he had made the right decision to pursue a career as a teaching professional.

The biggest change in instruction over the last 20 years is the technological advancement of video. Not only can a player now view his or her own swing, but he can also work with players exclusively by video. He now has students that he works with who he has never met as they work together exclusively by video.

Working with younger students, he finds that he receives text messages, e-mails, and phone calls from students whenever they have a problem with their swings. Everything in the world around us has become about fulfilling immediate demand and as a result many of his younger students have become conditioned to want immediate solutions whenever they have issues. It did not used to be that way as students would wait until they met in person to work out any issues.

Watching Rory McIlroy, he has not noticed any significant changes in his golf swing over the past year. Rory has his own swing and he has embraced that so he doubts that we will see Rory overhaul his swing multiple times the way that Tiger Woods has over the last 15 years. McIlroy has improved his physique, his strength, his swing width, and his acceleration through the ball. He is only about 5’9” but with the way he swings the club, it is as though he is 6’2” because of the way he has worked on his swing and his physique.

Looking at Tiger Woods’ swing, Breed feels that Tiger owns his swing on the practice range and on Thursday and Friday but not on the weekend. It seems as though Tiger still does not have enough confidence in his own swing as the weekend begins and the tournament is coming to a close. Breed likes what Tiger is doing but Tiger relies heavily on a cut instead of a draw and he also seems to have a bit of mental block on the weekend as the pressure increases. Breed has no doubt that Tiger will be able to overcome that issue because he has been able to overcome every other issue he has ever had on the course.

When asked about Phil Mickelson’s new claw grip with his putter, Breed said that the advantages of using the claw grip is that you are able to stabilize the face of the putter. If you open or close the face at impact, you have an effect on where the ball goes and many times it is the difference between making and missing a putt. As you stabilize the face, the ball goes on a better line and you begin to make more putts. When you get your wrist in line the back of your hand, you are able to keep the putter face perpendicular to the ground and there have been a number of great putters over the years whose only goal was to keep their putter on a consistent angle throughout the stroke.

As anchored putters have increased in popularity and notoriety, he sees a lot of players who are struggling with the yips turning to that method. When he is working with students who have those problems, Breed does not advise them to start anchoring their putters. Instead, he advices players to keep their standard putters and use the claw grip.

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Watch: Moore does impressions of Tiger, Poults, Bubba

By Grill Room TeamJuly 16, 2018, 10:36 pm
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Johnson begins Open week as 12/1 betting favorite

By Will GrayJuly 16, 2018, 5:15 pm

Dustin Johnson heads into The Open as the top-ranked player in the world, and he's also an understandable betting favorite as he looks to win a second career major.

Johnson has not played since the U.S. Open, where he led by four shots at the halfway point and eventually finished third. He has three top-10 finishes in nine Open appearances, notably a T-2 finish at Royal St. George's in 2011.

Johnson opened as a 12/1 favorite when the Westgate Las Vegas Superbook first published odds for Carnoustie after the U.S. Open, and he remains at that number with the first round just three days away.

Here's a look at the latest odds on some of the other top contenders, according to the Westgate:

12/1: Dustin Johnson

16/1: Rory McIlroy, Rickie Fowler, Justin Rose

20/1: Jordan Spieth, Justin Thomas, Tommy Fleetwood, Brooks Koepka, Jon Rahm

25/1: Jason Day, Henrik Stenson, Tiger Woods

30/1: Sergio Garcia, Francesco Molinari, Paul Casey, Alex Noren, Patrick Reed

40/1: Hideki Matsuyama, Marc Leishman, Branden Grace, Tyrrell Hatton

50/1: Phil Mickelson, Ian Poulter, Matthew Fitzpatrick

60/1: Russell Knox, Louis Oosthuizen, Matt Kuchar, Bryson DeChambeau, Zach Johnson, Tony Finau, Bubba Watson

80/1: Lee Westwood, Adam Scott, Patrick Cantlay, Rafael Cabrera-Bello, Thomas Pieters, Xander Schauffele

100/1: Shane Lowry, Webb Simpson, Brandt Snedeker, Ryan Fox, Thorbjorn Olesen

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Woods needs top-10 at Open to qualify for WGC

By Will GrayJuly 16, 2018, 4:34 pm

If Tiger Woods is going to qualify for the final WGC-Bridgestone Invitational at Firestone Country Club, he'll need to do something he hasn't done in five years this week at The Open.

Woods has won eight times at Firestone, including his most recent PGA Tour victory in 2013, and has openly stated that he would like to qualify for the no-cut event in Akron before it shifts to Memphis next year. But in order to do so, Woods will need to move into the top 50 in the Official World Golf Ranking after this week's event at Carnoustie.

Woods is currently ranked No. 71 in the world, down two spots from last week, and based on projections it means that he'll need to finish no worse than a tie for eighth to have a chance of cracking the top 50. Woods' last top-10 finish at a major came at the 2013 Open at Muirfield, where he tied for sixth.

Updated Official World Golf Ranking

There are actually two OWGR cutoffs for the Bridgestone, July 23 and July 30. That means that Woods could theoretically still add a start at next week's RBC Canadian Open to chase a spot in the top 50, but he has said on multiple occasions that this week will be his last start of the month. The WGC-Bridgestone Invitational will be played Aug. 2-5.

There wasn't much movement in the world rankings last week, with the top 10 staying the same heading into the season's third major. Dustin Johnson remains world No. 1, followed by Justin Thomas, Justin Rose, Brooks Koepka and Jon Rahm. Defending Open champ Jordan Spieth is ranked sixth, with Rickie Fowler, Rory McIlroy, Jason Day and Tommy Fleetwood rounding out the top 10.

Despite taking the week off, Sweden's Alex Noren moved up three spots from No. 14 to No. 11, passing Patrick Reed, Bubba Watson and Paul Casey.

John Deere Classic champ Michael Kim went from No. 473 to No. 215 in the latest rankings, while South African Brandon Stone jumped from 371st to 110th with his win at the Scottish Open.

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Spieth takes familiar break ahead of Open defense

By Rex HoggardJuly 16, 2018, 3:50 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – As his title chances seemed to be slipping away during the final round of last year’s Open Championship, Jordan Spieth’s caddie took a moment to remind him who he was.

Following a bogey at No. 13, Michael Greller referenced a recent vacation he’d taken to Mexico where he’d spent time with Michael Phelps and Michael Jordan and why he deserved to be among that group of singular athletes.

Spieth, who won last year’s Open, decided to continue the tradition, spending time in Cabo again before this week’s championship.

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

“I kind of went through the same schedule,” Spieth said on Monday at Carnoustie. “It was nice to have a little vacation.”

Spieth hasn’t played since the Travelers Championship; instead he attended the Special Olympics USA Games earlier this month in Seattle with his sister. It was Spieth’s first time back to the Pacific Northwest since he won the 2015 U.S. Open.

“I went out to Chambers Bay with [Greller],” Spieth said. “We kind of walked down the 18th hole. It was cool reliving those memories.”

But most of all Spieth said he needed a break after a particularly tough season.

“I had the itch to get back to it after a couple weeks of not really working,” he said. “It was nice to kind of have that itch to get back.”