The point made was that the mainstream coverage generally didn't focus on things gamers find valuable, and he's actually right. We don't just watch the front page of the leaderboard, we follow larger trends and look for signs of returns to form or fades. If anything, and I've said this before, I'm convinced that those of you who frequent this blog are generally among the most knowledgeable and avid golf fans. That's what makes this fun. I've played BuzzDraft and PGATOUR.com fantasy with you, and you know your stuff.
With all of that as a backdrop, here we go with first round thoughts from the Shell Houston Open.
- I'm not buying D.A. Points (leader/8-under) yet. It's important to see if he can put three or four good rounds together, as he hasn't all year.
- I am a believer in Cameron Tringale and John Rollins this week. Tringale was seventh in our power rankings and I mentioned that he should be considered for a one-and-done this week. Rollins is always a possibility in Texas, and he's having a solid year.
- Angel Cabrera switches back to old irons this week and shoots a 6-under. Masters dark horse anyone?
- Brian Davis' 67 was his lowest of the year. He's been showing signs of snapping a cold-spell lately, but like Points needs to put more than one hot round together.
- Bud Cauley's 4-under was refreshing. He's struggled this year.
- Others at 4-under of note include the red-hot Jimmy Walker train, Bill Haas bouncing back from a rough weekend at Bay Hill and Lee Westwood showing up just in time for some Masters buzz.
- I like Dustin Johnson's afternoon 3-under. I mentioned that he was some stock to buy in the 8th spot in this week's power rankings. Wonder what his odds at Augusta are?
- Keep an eye on Louis Oosthuizen tomorrow after a 70 today.
- Brendan Steele shot a 70 as well, and his best tournament is the Valero Texas Open. Form looking good ahead of that.
- Keegan Bradley shot a 70 in the afternoon. I like him to improve his position tomorrow.
- Jonathan Byrd opened his year with an even-par 72 that included several short birdie misses. Irons looked dialed in. I'd like to see him play the weekend to see how he holds up over 72 holes, but the early returns aren't bad.
- Mickelson looked like he was going to lead the tournament early, but fell to a 72. Remember, a mediocre finish this week is probably a good sign for the Masters.
- Rory shot a 73, but made some birdies on the back nine. He opened with the same score at Doral before reeling in a top 10. Tomorrow morning's round will be a big deal. At worst, he needs to make the cut for two more round of live bullets over the weekend.
- Stricker's 73 was a surprise and Mahan's morning 74 was as well.
- Snedeker's 74 tells us the rust remains.
- Raise your hand if you had Thorbjorn Olesen shooting an 82. Headscratcher. Could be a really bad sign for Augusta. I didn't look at his round to know, but it makes me wonder if he struggled on the slick greens.
Yahoo! lineup for Friday is Kirk, D Johnson, K Bradley and Spieth.
I don't know that these will always be this lengthy, but let me know what you think.