After 2 false starts, the Hyundai Tournament of Champions at Kapalua finished Tuesday with Dustin Johnson winning with a 5-under 68 for a four-shot victory over defending champion Steve Stricker. Golf Digest’s John Strege describes Johnson’s performance saying, “He once led by five, then led by one, the result of his proclivity for not fully assessing the situation and avoiding unnavigable precincts.” Johnson played with his new Taylor Made driver and Rocketballz irons, though much was later made not about his new clubs, but his new girlfriend, Paulina Gretzky (The hockey star’s daughter).
The tournament didn’t start until the fourth day due to high winds topping 40mphs. As a result the tournament was shortened to just 54 holes. “It definitely got close out there today,” Johnson said. “Sometimes I hit a couple of bad drives, but I was always able to bounce back and do what I needed to do to stay out front.” This makes his 7th career win with Tour wins in each of his 6 straight seasons.
Stricker put a good fight, especially considering he limped around the course due to shooting pain on his left side. He finished with a 69.
“I knew it was going to be tough, but I gave it a run for a little while,” Stricker said.
Brandt Snedeker finished in third, six shots behind. He moved to No. 8 in the world ranking making him the second American behond Woods. Bubba Watson and Keegan Bradley finished T4 (-9) as they teamed up in the 2nd to last pairing. Rickie Fowler hung in there with a T6 finish with Tommy Gainey as Matt Kuchar ties Ian Poulter for T9.