AUGUSTA, Ga. – Jon Rahm has gleaned some significant advice about Augusta National over the years from a few of his elders, most notably Phil Mickelson and Jose Maria Olazabal.
Tiger Woods? Not so much.
“I think there's only one man in this field that hears advice from Tiger because I've asked before and I get nothing,” Rahm said. “So, you might need to ask Justin Thomas…”
Rahm’s playful accusation of Woods playing favorites, especially when it comes to the Masters, might not be off base. Woods usually plays his practice rounds alongside Thomas and Fred Couples and even brought Thomas to Augusta last Tuesday for a scouting trip. Rahm, meanwhile, hasn’t had much luck in the past picking the brain of the 15-time major winner.
“I remember asking him at East Lake the year he won, before on the putting green in the practice round, ‘Hey, man, any tips for Bermuda? Or this and that,’” Rahm recalled. “He turned around and said, ‘It's all about feel,’ and just kept going. I was like, ‘Cool, thank you.’
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“I asked him at Albany once about chipping into the grain. ‘You just got to be shallow.’ Okay. Meanwhile, I turn around and JT's there with him, and he's getting a whole dissertation on what to do.”
Thomas was later asked about his relationship with Woods, and he downplayed how much Woods actually reveals to him.
“I'm not necessarily asking him a lot of specifics about here,” Thomas said. “When I'm asking him stuff at home, it's just like I would ask Jon Rahm a question or ask Jordan [Spieth] a question. Any person or buddy that I respect their game and I think that they are really good and they maybe are a little bit better at something that I am not as consistently good at, like I want to learn, so I'm going to ask a question.
“I feel like Tiger's been a good person for me to do that. But, yeah, I guess I'm very fortunate in that regard.”