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PGA Championship News: What We Learned From Early Action

AUGUSTA, GA - APRIL 10: Dustin Johnson of the United States walks across the 18th green during the second round of the 2015 Masters Tournament at Augusta National Golf Club on April 10, 2015 in Augusta, Georgia. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

The first two rounds of the 97th PGA Championship are (almost) in the books and all we know right now is that anyone can win this tournament.

Whistling Straits is once again proving to be a formidable host, despite the weather not quite cooperating at the end of Friday’s second round.

The wind wasn’t really knocking back scores the way some have thought it would, leading to lower scores. We’ve seen some of the world’s best players make incredible shots from tough places and a relative unknown tie the major championship single-round scoring record.

The weekend will be must-see TV to say the least.

Here’s what we’ve learned — and what you may have missed:

No Visible Scar Tissue for Dustin Johnson

If Dustin Johnson ha come to Whistling Straits this week, fired 77-73, missed the cut and went home to plan for the FedEx Cup Playoffs, no one would’ve blamed the guy — but that has decidedly not been the case.

dustin-johnson-leave_anchor
Source: Back9Network

Instead showing visible scars for yet-another major disappointment at the U.S. Open (and, well, lets face it — the Open Championship, too), DJ came out firing on the first two days of the championship.

He fought and clawed on Friday to remain at 6-under where he began the day and finished at 7-under for the tournament before play was halted on Friday.

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Another Major, Another Missed Cut for Tiger

It’s already become a trend, but now it’s getting surreal — Tiger Woods will very likely miss the cut in three of the season’s four majors.

Once thought to be inconceivable, Woods missing cuts has become the norm — especially in major championships. He didn’t play as sloppily as he did in the U.S. Open or the Open Championship, but it still doesn’t look like it’ll be good enough to make it to the weekend.

For Woods, the question of whether or not he’ll make the FedEx Cup playoffs will also coms to an end. Without a win and some help at next week’s Wyndham Championship, Woods will miss out on the playoffs.

tigersadcbssports
Source: CBS Sports

And let’s be honest — Woods is more apt to start playing in the NFL than he is to win on the PGA Tour.

Hiroshi Iwata Ties Major Championship Scoring Record

Japan Tour star Hiroshi Iwata enjoyed his Friday at Whistling Straits more than anyone else — which was a good thing, considering he was in danger of missing the cut when he started.

After an opening-round 77, Iwata was left searching for answers ahead of his second round. Find answers, he did! Firing a course-record and major championship scoring record-tying 63.

Talk about a shot in the arm — the record round shot Iwata up the leaderboard and now, he’ll begin Saturday in the hunt for his first major title instead of catching a flight home.

The secret is in the dirt, boys and girls!

McIlroy, Spieth Enjoy Hole-Outs Early to Boost Rounds

Rory McIlroy and Jordan Spieth didn’t quite get off to the hottest of starts on Thursday, but they did make the highlight reel on Friday.

First, McIlroy made a sensational chip-in eagle on the par-5 second hole to kick-start what would end up being a 1-under 71 for the second consecutive day:

Then, amidst an epic 5-under 67  round to surge into contention for his third major title of the year, Jordan Spieth holed-out from a greenside bunker on the 9th hole to get his round going. At the end of the day, Spieth sat just a few shots off the lead.

Needless to say, all eyes will be on these two gentlemen over the weekend.

After Two Rounds — It’s Anyone’s Game

Usually at major championships, you see one or two guys you’ve never really heard of climb the leaderboard and duke it out with the games best. This week, there are a handful of guys looking to spoil weeks for guys like Jason Day, Jordan Spieth and Dustin Johnson.

At the end of the day on Friday, Matt Jones, Tony Finau, Hiroshi Iwata, Scott Piercy and more are all in contention with two rounds remaining.

With moving day on the horizon, it’ll be interesting to see who hangs on and ends up with a legitimate chance at contending for a major title on Sunday.

 

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