Brian Gaffney follows the old adage “Teacher, heal thyself!”

One of the very first things I teach a student who takes a three-day school with me is pre-shot routine.  Its is so critical to understand that a pre-shot routine is like the dress rehearsal before the play.  If the dress rehearsal goes badly, opening night is going to be a disaster!  Brian Gaffney, PGA Professional at Quaker Ridge Golf Club, is one of the club professionals who have qualified to play in the PGA Championship at Baltusrol this week.  He is doing exactly what he tells his students to do – breath and follow your pre-shot routine.  Good luck Brian!  Thanks to  of Golf Digest for this interesting article!

One of the coolest things about the field at the PGA Championship is that your local PGA pro could be in it. That is, if he happens to be ridiculously good and makes it through qualifying. The 20 PGA pros in the field this year at Baltusrol aren’t just great players, they’re great teachers, too. Each day this week, we’re asking them what advice they give their students that they’re going to use themselves while taking on the best in the world.

One of the more notable PGA pros in the field this year is Brian Gaffney. Last year, Gaffney of Quaker Ridge Golf Club became the first club pro in four years to make the cut at the PGA Championship. After that performance, it’d be easy to feel the pressure this year.

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“Something I tell my students is when you’re nervous, make sure you breathe. You want to slow your heart rate down and get rid of the tension. This is important because tension messes with your tempo and the timing of your swing. Tension is the last thing I want this week.”

To see what else Brian Gaffney teaches his students that he is doing this week, go here!

Source :    Golf Digest

Pictures : Getty Images    robert.fitzpatrick8523

An entrance song for the first tee? Sounds like fun!

The LPGA’s UL International Crown offered a fun wrinkle at this year’s event, with the teams arriving at the first tee via entrance music!  What would your song of choice be?  I know mine would be “The eye of the Tiger!” from the Rocky movie.  Here is a list put together by  of Golf Digest, of what he thought your top 14 golfers would choose.  Check it out!

Jordan Spieth — “Barefoot Blue Jean Night,” Jake Owen

Patrick Reed — “You’re The Best Around,” Joe Esposito

Patrick-Reed-song

Beef Johnston — “Cheeseburger in Paradise,” Jimmy Buffett

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Adam Scott — “Brown Eyed Handsome Man,” Chuck Berry

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Dustin Johnson — “Nuthin’ But a ‘G’ Thang,” Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg

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  To see the rest of this group and their entrance songs, go here! Source :  of Golf Digest Pictures : Golf Digest  

Baltusrol is ready for the World’s Best!

Baltustrol is one of the iconic Championship Golf Courses in the USA. It has hosted 7 US Opens, 4 US Amateurs, 2 US Women’s Opens, and 2 US Women’s Amateurs. Quite a resume.  This year, the PGA along with longtime greenkeeper Mark Kuhns is setting the course up for a grandstand finish.  With the rough over 4″ high and the greens running at 14 on the stimpmeter, the winner here will have to have all the shots!  Thanks go to Ron Whitten writing for GolfWorld on all the details!
Who can forget Phil Mickelson's chip on the 18th to seal the win in 2005!

Who can forget Phil Mickelson’s chip on the 18th to seal the win in 2005!

It’s a different Baltusrol for this year’s PGA Championship, with different dates and a different finish. Yet the Lower Course at Baltusrol Golf Club in Springfield, N.J., is poised to deliver what the PGA has consistently delivered over the past decade: the most exciting and entertaining competition, year in and year out, of any of the four majors. Let’s start with the different dates. The PGA has been bumped from its traditional hot-and-humid mid-August slot by the Olympic golf competition. So this year it will be contested July 28-31, just 11 days after the Open Championship wrapped up in thrilling fashion at Troon. That could bode well for the winner of the claret jug, Henrik Stenson, if one believes in momentum. Or it could spell trouble, if jetlag and fatigue are factored in. How the date change impacts the tournament from a weather standpoint is similarly uncertain. The earlier dates don’t guarantee there won’t be dog-day afternoons at Baltusrol; as the current forecast would suggest. “During our PGA Championship here in August 2005,” says Mark Kuhns, the club’s veteran course superintendent, “the temperature hit 100 degrees every day. July can’t be any worse. It’s a crapshoot. There are some Julys where the temperature never exceeds 80. But some years, we’ve seen it hit 100.” It can also be stormy in New Jersey in July, but indeed no worse than it was at Baltusrol’s last PGA in 2005, when an early Sunday evening lightning storm delayed the tournament conclusion until Monday morning, when 12 players had to return to finish their final rounds. One of the lucky ones to finish before the storm was Tiger Woods, who posted a two-under 278 late Sunday afternoon to trail leader Phil Mickelson, then on the 13th hole, by two shots. Unbeknownst to tournament officials, Woods flew home to Orlando that evening rather than stay over for a possible playoff. His reasoning was that there were five players between him and a win and it was unlikely all five would collapse with less than half a dozen holes remaining. In retrospect, that stands as perhaps Woods’ first acknowledgement that his intimidation factor was starting to wane. It conjures up the amazing possibility that Mickelson, or one of the other four, could have been declared a playoff winner by default, merely over the price of a hotel room.
To read how Mark Kuhns, the club’s veteran course superintendent, is setting up the course this week, go here! Source : Ron Whitten   GolfWorld Pictures : GolfWorld   Corn Farmer

The Best Bet to Win the PGA Championship? Take a Guess!

There are the usual suspects on this list, but there are some surprises as well.  But Sergio Garcia at 30/1 is a pretty good bet.  I think it’s time to get the monkey off his back and take home a major trophy to Spain!  With 3 first time winners of Majors in 2016, I’m not going to buck the trend.  Second will be Branden Grace and third Dustin Johnson.  Who do you like? Comments below, please!  

1.) Jason Day

Source :    Golf Digest  Pictures : Golf Digest 

Some of the Greatest Moments in PGA Championship History!

There have been some spectacular moments in the history of the PGA Championship.  They are indelibly etched into our brains and we watched with awe as these amazing moments transpired.  T.J. Auclair of PGA.com describes these moments with the aid of some great video footage! Major championships provide the best drama we see all year in golf. Next week’s PGA Championship at Baltusrol, sadly marks the last major of the season in men’s golf. Without question, there will be shots hit and stories told that will become a part of golf lore. It always happens that way.  And with that, here are five great moments in PGA Championship history.  
  5. Sergio Garcia’s shot from behind the tree on No. 16 at Medinah in 1999. Garcia, then just 19 years old, pulled off one of the most memorable shots in PGA Championship history with this masterful shot from behind a tree. On the 452-yard par 4, Garcia faced an approach shot of 189 yards from the green in the exposed roots behind a large tree. Garcia elected to hit the ball instead of chipping safely back into the fairway. He opened the face of a 6-iron and as he swung, closed his eyes at impact. The ball soared into a high left-to-right trajectory, landing on the green some 60 feet from the hole. Garcia sprinted up the fairway and did a scissors kick leap to see the green. He two-putted for par, but no one will forget that remarkable shot.  
  4. Shaun Micheel’s 72nd hole 7-iron at Oak Hill in 2003. Not many were familiar with Micheel before the start of the 2003 PGA Championship. But, by the time it was over, he left a mark on his lone major victory with a shot for the ages. Micheel, showing incredible composure in a situation he’d never been in before, closed out his magical week with this magical 7-iron on the final hole. The ball soared in the air and settled within inches of the hole after Micheel ordered it to, “Be right!” A tap-in birdie and the PGA Championship was Micheel’s. And let’s be honest, the fact that the ball stayed out of the hole is almost better than it going in. It would have been a fantastic shot either way, but since it stopped just inches from the cup, you can’t call it luck. It was an exclamation point on the best golf week of Micheel’s life. To see the other 3 great moments in PGA Championship history, go here! Source :  T.J. Auclair     PGA.com Pictures : jpellgen

It’s Canadian Open week. Let’s review one of the greatest shots EVER!

Tiger Woods’ shot on the 18th hole during the final round of the 2000 Canadian Open was one of the top 5 shots I have ever seen in my life.  The main reason being, that I have played that hole several times and know what kind of shot is needed to carry the water.  When the announcer said Tiger was taking a 6 iron, I said to my wife “This is going to be wet!”  Wow, was I wrong.  I literally jumped out of my chair with excitement!  Thanks to the PGA Tour for this video reminding us of the genius that was Tiger woods.
En route to victory in the final round of the 2000 Bell Canadian Open, Tiger Woods hit what many consider his greatest shot ever on the PGA TOUR, at the par-5, 18th hole.
Source : PGA TOUR

Graham DeLaet’s beard is a thing of the past! Thank heavens!

A few weeks ago I posted that it was time for Graham DeLaet to get rid of the Grissley Adams beard.  It made him look 20 years older and not like a professional golfer but a lumberjack!  Thank heavens he must have read my post and said: “Mel is right, the beard needs to go!”  Thak a look at the two pictures below and tell me he does not look 20 years younger!  Maybe now his golf game will get back to the “Pre-beard” era! It certainly looked that way last week.  Thanks to  of Golf Digest for reporting on this fun fact!
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PALM HARBOR, FL – MARCH 13: Graham DeLaet of Canada hits off the third tee during the final round of the Valspar Championship at Innisbrook Resort Copperhead Course on March 13, 2016 in Palm Harbor, Florida. (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)

Canada has given society four gifts, and four gifts only: Basketball (inventor James Naismith hailed from the Great White North), Ryan Gosling, Bloody Caesars and Graham DeLaet’s beard. Sadly, that list has been whittled down to three.

After taking a month-long sabbatical from the PGA Tour to deal with anxiety issues over his short game, DeLaet has returned, and in strong fashion, finishing T-8 at last week’s Barbasol Championship. But I noticed something amiss from DeLaet; chiefly, his world-renowned whiskers were gone:

Source :       Golf Digest
Pictures : Getty Images

Would you change your putting grip mid round in a Major?

Changing putting grips mid-round is something I certainly have done in my career.  If I am having a poor or inconsistent putting round, I will not hesitate to change my grip to get something going.  But changing grips continually between short, medium and long putts is something completely different, and Phil Mickelson did it in a Major Championship!  He certainly has his reasons, so read on as   of Golf Digest brings us this interesting article and asks the question “Would you change your putting grip mid round in a Major?
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TROON, SCOTLAND – JULY 17: Phil Mickelson of the United States putts on the 9th green during the final round on day four of the 145th Open Championship at Royal Troon on July 17, 2016 in Troon, Scotland. (Photo by Matthew Lewis/Getty Images)

Whatever the reason was for Phil Mickelson’s second-place finish to Henrik Stenson, it wasn’t the putter.

Mickelson one-putted 35 out of 72 holes — second best in the field — and made only four bogies the entire week to go with 19 birdies and an eagle. His final score of 267 would have won every other major in history with the exception of one.

He did introduce an interesting quirk on the back nine Sunday, moving from the claw putting grip — with his lower hand turned sideways on the bottom of the grip — he had used for the entire tournament to that point to a conventional grip. Standing over a mid-length putt on the 16th, he started with a conventional grip and turned his hand around to the claw before pulling the trigger.

To read on about how Phil Mickelson changes his putting grip during the round and why, go here!

Source :    Golf Digest

Pictures : Getty Images   Matthew Lewis/Getty Images   Julie Campbell

The swing that almost won the Open (again) Phil the Thrill!

They don’t call him “Phil the Thrill” for nothing.  Phil Mickelson and Henrik Stenson just provided one of the most thrilling final rounds in a Major Championship since Jack Nicklaus and Tom Watson at Turnberry in 1977.  Take a look at this swing sequence that has Phil playing great golf again.  I think his new coach, Andrew Getson, has done an amazing job of tightening up Phil’s swing and has certainly made him a contender in Majors once again.  Thanks to   of Golf Digest for the swing analysis and to  for the great pictures!
Try as he might to inject technical excellence into his golf swing, Phil Mickelson remains a feel player at heart. His driver swing is in many ways an extension of his magical execution with the wedges—long on imagination, inspiration and innovation, and short on textbook regimentation. But even as his driver swing strays from the biomechanical ideal, it exhibits traits well worth adopting. When Phil is running well, his driver is a formidable weapon that has helped him win 42 PGA Tour events, including five majors. A massively long hitter for most of his career, Mickelson also has spells of great accuracy off the tee. And he’s a true shotmaker with the driver, drawing and fading the ball at will, shaping shots to fit any fairway. His driver swing is eye-catching and fun to watch, with athleticism from start to finish and amazing tempo and rhythm. At age 44, Mickelson still swings with a reckless freedom that exudes confidence. After a career-long quest to make his technique more efficient and reliable, Phil has emerged with a swing that average golfers should admire. Below are a few moves to copy.

SETUP AND TAKEAWAY

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A History Lesson. Learn about all 9 Open Championship Venues!

Everyone loves the beauty of Augusta National and the toughness of a US Open course, but there is none that can compare with the history of the Open Championship! These venues are hundreds of years old and are on every golfer’s bucket list!   of Golf Digest has put together the complete list of Open Championship courses that are used in the rotation. Learn a little history!
A crash course on the nine venues that comprise the current Open rota.

Royal Troon Golf Club

To see the rest of these iconic British Open venues, go here! Source :    Golf Digest Pictures : Golf Digest