As I’ve done the last couple of years (with varying degrees of success), and although golf is an impossible game to predict, here are a few thoughts and guesses on the upcoming year, with results from last year’s predictions also included.
There’s something about this year that makes it seem different than the last few. Professional golf, on the men’s and women’s side, seems very healthy. The LPGA had a banner year in 2014, with it’s biggest stars shining brightly. The PGA Tour saw Rory McIlroy ascend to the throne of no.1 with two major championship victories, but, his competition is healthy.
Speaking of healthy, a constant storyline this year will be whether Tiger’s back will hold up for a full season. There’s no denying he wants to play, and he wants to play well, but it’s a matter of whether his 39-year-old body will allow for it, while the younger crop of professionals have no fear anymore.
Regardless of what happens, it should be a very fun year in the world of professional golf.
Stay tuned to this space – and iTunes – as I’ll be releasing a bi-monthly podcast. Really looking forward to getting that going through 2015, along with continuing to write for a number of publications. I’ll be continuing my freelance duties for outlets like the Globe & Mail, SCOREGolf, Ontario Golf News and the Canadian Press, so keep your eyes out for my work.
As always, thanks for reading. Happy New Year!
Who will be no.1 in the world at this time next year?
2014 prediction: Rory McIlroy (correct!)
2015 prediction: Rory McIlroy (except I don’t think he’ll hold it for the full calendar year)
How many times will Tiger win?
2014 prediction: Three times, including the PGA Championship (very wrong!)
2015 prediction: Twice
Will any of the ‘Best to Never Win a Major’ win a major?
2014 prediction: Yes (wrong!) – Bubba Watson won his second Masters title, Martin Kaymer won his second major at the U.S. Open, and Rory won the other two
2015 prediction: Yes (see below)
The winners of the Majors will be?
2014 prediction: Henrik Stenson, Adam Scott, Sergio Garcia, Tiger Woods (oh, so wrong!)
2015 prediction: Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Rickie Fowler, Henrik Stenson
2014 prediction: Europe (correct!)
2015 Presidents Cup prediction: U.S.
PGA TOUR Player of the Year
2014 prediction: Adam Scott (wrong!)
2015 prediction: Rory McIlroy
Major I want to attend the most?
This wasn’t so much a prediction as a statement, but I said the U.S. Open, and I actually got to go there! (For a practice round, but still, it was very cool). This year I’d have to say The Masters. So many storylines, and I’m excited for Canadian amateur Corey Conners, who, on the heels of his runner-up finish at the U.S. Amateur will get to play.
- Half of Team Canada’s Men’s team will turn professional before the end of the summer next year
- 50% correct. Taylor Pendrith and Chris Hemmerich have turned pro, while Adam Svensson & Corey Conners remain amateurs.
- Atlantic Canada will host one of the most impressive Canadian golf events ever next year
- The Nova Scotia Open and GOLFest were both excellent events. I’ll give myself this one
- Graham DeLaet will win on the PGA Tour. My money is an early-season event. He’ll make the cut at two of the four majors
- He didn’t win, but he earned $2.6M and finished second at two early-season events. He made the cut at the PGA Championship, and finished T15
- Meanwhile, Nick Taylor captured a late-season event, becoming the first Canadian in five years to find the winner’s circle
- An unexpected name will be low Canadian at the Canadian Open.
- Close, but no cigar. Taylor Pendrith was T1 after the first round, but it was Graham DeLaet who secured the honour
- Brooke Henderson will challenge at an LPGA event
- She finished T10 at the U.S. Women’s Open, and turned professional a few weeks ago.
- A Canadian will once again be Player of the Year on PGA Tour Canada. Maybe Cory Renfrew.
- Nope, it was American Joel Dahmen who won twice yearly and rode that success to the money title and PoY honours
This year’s random predictions —
- Stephen Ames will win on the Champions Tour
- Brad Fritsch will not win on the Web.com Tour, but he’ll finish within the top-25 and get his PGA Tour Card for 2015-16
- Adam Hadwin will challenge at more than one PGA Tour event
- At least one Canadian will make the Presidents Cup team
- If Mike Weir doesn’t qualify for the British Open, he will play for Canada at the Pan-Am Games in July
- PGA TOUR Canada will add at least one tournament to its schedule this year
- I’m going to recycle my 2014 prediction again, and say a Canadian will be PGATC’s PoY
- A course that’s never hosted the Canadian Open will be announced to do so for 2016
- There will only be one female Canadian golfer with full LPGA status at the end of 2015