Who is the New PGA Tour Champion, Gary Woodland?

Gary Woodland, who hasn’t managed to finish in the top 10 until 2018, successfully held off a potent charge from Brooks Koepka, a two-time defending champion, to claim victory at the 119th U.S Open for his first major win at Pebble Beach on Sunday.

Woodland, who began the final round with only a one-stroke lead, managed to go 2-under par and ended 13 under for 72 holes to claim victory by three strokes against Koepka, who was attempting to become the first golfer in 114 years to claim victory in 3 successive U.S Open titles. If you don’t know much about Gary Woodland, here are a few things that will impress you about him.

He was a viral video star earlier in the season

When Gary Woodland made his arrival at the Waste Management Phoenix Open during January, the officials of the PGA Tour asked him if he would mind playing with Amy Bockerstette, a Special Olympics golfer with Down syndrome, on the famous 16th hole par-3.

Gary Woodland was happy to go ahead and play with Amy. He met her father and Amy Bockerstette once he reached the tee box on the 16th. Amy, who recently accepted a scholarship to play golf in Phoenix at the Paradise Valley Community College, knocked her tee shot straight into a bunker, chipped it out to just over 8 feet, and then sank the ball for par. Gary Woodland stated that it was awesome.

It was also the most-watched video of the PGA Tour with over 5 million views. Gary stated that he had done quite a bit in his life, but this is something that he will never forget.

Father’s Day Comes with Special Meaning for Woodland

During March 2017, Gary announced on Instagram that his wife was expecting twins. In the same month, he unexpectedly withdraws from the prestigious WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play that took place in Austin, Texas due to personal reasons.

After a week, Gary made another announcement that informed his fans that they lost one of their babies. Jaxson, Woodland’s son, was born in June 2017, ten weeks premature and had to stay at the hospital for 40 days. Thankfully, he is healthy and managed to walk with his dad during the par-three contest in April.

Gary Initially Wanted to Play Basketball

Woodland was raised in Kansas and was considered a golf and basketball star at Shawnee Heights High School. However, Division I schools didn’t recruit him even though he averaged 18 points and was named an all-state player. He loved playing basketball but ended up playing golf instead. Woodland initially signed to play basketball and golf at Washburn University Division II.

However, after he opened his freshman season, he quickly realized that golf is the sport for his future. Once he made that realization, he decided to transfer to Kansas, where he would play golf the very next year. Woodland stated that basketball still manages to assist him on the golf course.

How Will Kevin Durant’s Injury Impact Game 6?

The Golden State Warriors are only one victory away from forcing a Game 7 during the NBA Finals. However, they need to accomplish it without Kevin Durant, the team’s All-Star forward, who went down in Game 6 due to an Achilles injury earlier this week.

What exactly does Kevin Durant’s injury mean for his team when they face the Toronto Raptors in Game 6? To answer this vital question, we asked 4 of our basketball experts to give their advice on the injury and to tell you how this will affect things in Game 6 of the NBA Finals.

Emily Thomson

The Toronto Raptors are required to win one of the next two matches and better not be sorry for it either. Winning a championship essentially means that you don’t have to say sorry for the way it happened. If Toronto is unable to do that, the last 3 minutes during Game 5 will haunt them forever. For Golden State, it means that they are on a freeroll. There isn’t anybody that anticipates that they will win this now. If they do, they are giants!

Scott Windhorst

The Golden State Warriors and Steve Kerr need to find alternative ways to score points without Kevin Durant. If you look at the Per Second Spectrum, you will realise that the two most-used plays for the Golden State Warriors were Durant isolations and Durant post-ups. He can be seen as the centrepiece for the team’s offence. He also managed to win the MVP award during the Finals in the last two seasons. He was regarded as the best scorer during the NBA playoffs, and his recent injury means that the splash brothers need to overcome the increase in defence and search for ways to score more to cover for Kevin Durant’s absence.

During Game 5, the team managed to do so with a record-breaking 3-point scoring performance. However, it’s highly unlikely that the Golden State Warriors will accumulate 30 3-pointers during Game 6. So you need to ask yourself, where will the remaining points come from now?

Timothy Lampard

The Toronto Raptors are back to being the favourites to win this year. The arrival of Kevin Durant caused a lot of havoc in the series, especially when you look at his performance before he went down due to an injury. However, without Kevin Durant, and perhaps Kevon Looney, who managed to bring new life to the game after his chest injury, it’s difficult to imagine that the Golden State Warriors will pull something magical off in the next two matches.

Kevin Snellings

The Toronto Raptors are the better team when Kevin Durant is not playing. The players are more athletic and longer than the Golden State Warriors, as they can maintain both defensive and offensive pressure which the Warriors are unable to overcome. The game was undecided while Durant was playing. However, without him, the Raptors are favourites to win this year.

The Summer of Soccer

The European Club season of 2018/19 came to an end on Saturday evening with the final of the Champions League. However, there’s no rest for football enthusiasts as there are four international men’s tournaments, including the Africa Cup of Nations, the Gold Cup, the Copa America, and the UEFA Nations League along with the Women’s World Cup taking place over the next six weeks. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the most important days to binge-watch some great soccer matches during your summer.

9 June 2019

The day begins with the Women’s World Cup where you can witness three powerhouses, including England, Brazil, and Italy, as they clash in tournament openers against Scotland, Jamaica, and Australia, respectively. This is going to be quite a test for the England team who are considered favourites in the tournament and won’t be able to slip up at all during the early stages. During the UEFA Nations League, you can expect Switzerland, Portugal, Netherlands, or England to be winners.

11 June 2019

This will be a spectacular day in the Women’s World Cup as the United States kick off against Thailand to defend their championship. Earlier on in the day, you can also watch the Netherlands clash against New Zealand.

18 June 2019

Make sure you get some sleep during the day as there will be loads of entertainment during the night. Brazil and Italy will face each other in the group stage of the Women’s World Cup before Selecao takes on Venezuela at 8:30 pm in the Copa America. You will also need to stay awake for the United States men in the Gold Cup against Guyana.

22 June 2019

In November 2017, the United States managed to lose horribly against Trinidad and Tobago. Therefore, this will be the first time they can have their revenge in the group stage of the Gold Cup. Before this match, you can also enjoy an exciting game between Peru and Brazil in the Copa America. If this is not enough, there are 5 MLS games to keep you entertained.

29 June 2019

Towards the end of June, things will get quite dangerous in all four soccer tournaments, and you’ll be able to enjoy a total of 8 matches to keep you going. You will have two quarterfinals in the Women’s World Cup, a quarterfinal in Copa America, two quarterfinals in the Gold Cup, and 3 African Nations Cup matches, including Ghana vs Cameroon. If this is not enough, you can also look forward to 9 MLS games.

2 July 2019

Three of the soccer competitions will reach a vital point as you’ll be able to look forward to 3 semifinal matches in the Gold Cup, Copa America, and Women’s World Cup. You will also have a total of 4 games in the African Nations Cup.

7 July 2019

This will be known as the Day of Finals as you’ll see the winners being crowned for the Gold Cup, Copa America, and Women’s World Cup.

Which Player Can a Football Team Not Live Without?

There’s no denying that the upcoming transfer window is going to be extremely busy. It’s for this very reason that we decided to take a look at the most indispensable players in football from some of the biggest clubs in the world. We are going to take an in-depth look at the players that have the most significant impact on the field and those that create goals and assists while showing off dribbling skills and through balls.

Fernandinho – Manchester City

Since he turned 30, Fernandinho has averaged 2,687 minutes out of 3,420 in the last four seasons in the Premier League. He is considered Manchester City’s ignition and anchor and has led the team in both interceptions and tackles this past season. He has also led all non-defenders when it comes to forward passes every 90 minutes. His incredible ability to win the ball and provide it to Man City’s playmakers is the reason. Pep can have more attackers on the field.

Virgil van Dijk – Liverpool

In 49 matches this season in both the Champions League and Premier League, he has only made 49 tackles without losing one of them. This means that no attacker, including Messi, Eden Hazard, Kylian Mbappe, or Neymar, has managed to dribble past him during the 2018/19 season successfully. Virgil van Dijk has managed to transform the defence of Liverpool from anxiety and chaos to a mind-blowing source of exceptional strength. During the first two seasons with Jurgen Klopp at the helm, the team committed 21 errors, all leading to goals. However, in the past two years, there’s only been 8. When Virgil wasn’t around, the team conceded 42 goals. However, when Virgil joined the team, that number decreased to 22.

Paul Pogba – Manchester United

Even though his goal-scoring numbers were bumped up by seven penalties and he was mostly benched during the reign of Jose Mourinho, Paul Pogba was still the most impactful player for Manchester United this season. He managed to bypass more defenders in every match with his passes than any other player at United, and the passes he received also managed to avoid more opponents than any other player in United. He also managed to register more assists, score more goals, and completed more dribbles in 90 minutes than any other player on his team.

Eden Hazard – Chelsea

There is arguably no other player within Europe who’s more vital to their club than Eden Hazard. Reports are stating that he wants to leave the club and the team cannot sign any new players until 2020. During the 2019/19 season, Hazard was performing like four players at once. He was leading his team with 16 goals, while the closest to him had 8. He was leading the team with 15 assists, while the closest to him had 6. He managed to complete 138 dribbles, while the closest to him had 45. He accumulated 240 touches in the penalty area of the opposition, while the closest to him had 113.

Why the PGA Championship on Sunday Still Matters

Brooks Koepka could not widen his lead during the third round of the PGA Championship on Saturday at Bethpage Black. However, the defending champion of the PGA Championship didn’t give anything back either.

Koepka managed to hit even-par 70 to give him a 54-hole total of -12 to successfully maintain his phenomenal 7-shot lead ahead of the final round on Sunday, along with his friend Dustin Johnson, Jazz Janewattaanond, Luke List, and Harold Varner III chasing him as the competition’s closest competitors.

Since 1934, in the era of Masters, there has only been a total of 24 times when a golfer managed to take the lead with 5 or more strokes throughout a 54 hole course in a major championship.

There have only been four times when a player failed to hold on to that lead, including Jean Van de Velde during the 1999 Open Championship, Greg Norman during the 1996 Masters, Ed Sneed during the 1979 Masters, and Tom Watson during the 1978 PGA Championship. It’s quite apparent that Koepka will not pull a Van de Velde this time around.

Koepka on the PGA Championship

Koepka recently stated to reporters that he would not give up. He loves the force on the field and will try his best to extend the lead as best he can during the championship. He also stated that it would be nice to make a ten during the final hole. However, he is just going out there to play some good golf and to see how things end up. He will be satisfied if he can have another great game on Sunday before he makes his way home.

Although it’s still too early to place his name on the prestigious Wanamaker Trophy for the 2nd consecutive year, it looks inevitable after the way he played on Saturday. There are loads of reasons to watch the final day of the PGA Championship on Sunday.

Koepka has managed to torch the entire field and has set loads of milestones during the tournament as well. For instance, he will join the list of Best Score to Par on 54 Holes and the list of Players with Multiple U.S Open and PGA Championship Wins.

Who Will Finish Second in the PGA Championship?

There is a total of 15 players on the field that are currently under par on the 54-hole course, and one of them will take second place behind Koepka. However, who will this player be? This is precisely another reason why you should watch the PGA Championship on Sunday. Dustin Johnson believes he has an excellent chance to take second place.

Koepka wasn’t playing at his best on Saturday as he has successive bogeys on both the 9th and 10th hole. However, no other player in the tournament managed to take advantage of this. This makes you think if anyone else will be able to apply the necessary pressure to make Koepka crumble?

Mercedes is Dominating Formula One in 2019

Lewis Hamilton recently stated that Mercedes could not be blamed for their excellent start in the 2019 Formula 1 season that has primarily been a one-sided affair. Lewis Hamilton assisted Mercedes to claim their fifth successive one-two finish during the Spanish Grand Prix. This inflicted more damage to Ferrari, a team that is losing grip on a two-way fight with Mercedes.

The 2019 Formula One Season for Mercedes

The performance showcased by Ferrari during offseason testing gave the impression that they would be competitive in the 2019 Formula 1 season. However, it hasn’t been the case over the last few months, and it appears that the Italian team have fallen behind Mercedes since the 2019 campaign started. Mercedes continue to win at every race, while Red Bull and Ferrari keep falling behind.

Unless Ferrari can make a remarkable comeback, it looks like Mercedes will claim their sixth consecutive ’constructor’s championship in 2019, a run that stretches back to the introduction of the V6 turbo engines that were introduced in 2014. This achievement will match the incredible record set by the Italian team between 1999 and 2004.

Lewis Hamilton has stated on numerous occasions throughout his career with Mercedes that although he enjoys winning, he wants to a lot more from his rivals in terms of competition. He also stated that staying focused is relatively easy these days. However, it’s far more entertaining for him when he needs to compete against another team. This is what Formula One is all about.

Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes

Lewis Hamilton was recently asked if he can win all 21 races this season with Mercedes. He replied that he doesn’t know. Both he and the Mercedes team didn’t realize that they would enter the season and win five consecutive races which were astonishing for everyone in the organization.

The entire Mercedes team works incredibly hard to ensure everything is perfect for every single race. Nobody in the organization is overconfident, and there are always discussions about the car and the improvements that can be made to make it even more remarkable around the track. The Mercedes team is the most reliable team in Formula 1 and the moment and thanks to all the races, it shows.

The Mercedes team continues to push the needle and push the benchmark to do better every single season. Therefore, it’s easy to understand why fans are so happy with the overall performance by Mercedes.

It’s just a shame that no other team currently provides any competition for Mercedes at the moment. We would hate to see Mercedes run away with the season so early on without anyone giving fans a genuinely nail-biting season to look forward to. Let’s hope this changes quickly.

Max Homa’s Journey to Win $1.42 Million

They are mostly just numbers, often separated by a couple of zeros and commas. In this case, these zeros and commas signify a prize pool in golf. These are numbers that have grown so much it makes you numb.

Even though it’s no longer utilized as a benchmark to regulate PGA Tour standings, money is still significant at the end. FedEx points aren’t spent, but cash on the other hand does. If you consider yourself a professional golfer who pays to go around the country from your pocket, the massive numbers will look like a dream.

Max Homa’s Victory

So, on Sunday afternoon at Quail Hollow, you could find Max Homa. He was cruising comfortably to his very first PGA Tour win with a remarkable 4-under-par at the renowned Wells Fargo Championship. However, it’s the numbers that impressed him as he managed to walk away with a jaw-dropping $1.42 million. A prize pool that he could only dream of taking home before he started playing in the championship.

Most of you will shrug at the news of Max Homa, and why not? Most professional golfers make several million during their careers. Justin Rose has managed to make over $2.5 million in 2019 and doesn’t even feature in the top 10. Matt Kuchar, currently leading the FedEx Cup points won $1.2 million and has made a total of $49 million in his golfing career.

To give you an idea of Max Homa and his winning streak we have to go back two years. In 2017, he participated in a full schedule of championship and tournaments and only managed to take home a total of $18,000.

So, the prize money he received on Sunday evening seemed a bit obscene. There’s no denying that the prize money will be eaten by travel expenses, lodging, caddie fees, and taxes, but it signifies something authentic to a golf player that was missing cuts two years ago at an alarming rate.

Max Homa’s Career

Max Homa managed to win the NCAA Individual title in 2013 at California. Within the same year, he found himself on the U.S Walker Cup team alongside Justin Thomas. Both golfers decided to turn pro after that, making their debuts in the PGA Tour at the Safeway Open. This is where Max Homa managed to tie for 9th. Both players also managed to make it to the 2015 PGA Tour.

However, while Justin Thomas managed to develop into one of the most elite players in the world, Max Homa had a difficult time to find his feet. In 2015, he lost his tour card after the season ended and had to make a return to the web.com Tour. He eventually got his card back but only made two cuts from 17 tournaments in 2017. Therefore, it’s quite phenomenal to see how Max Homa made it from the bottom right to the top in 2019.

Valtteri Bottas Might Be The Only Driver to Stop the Dominance of Lewis Hamilton

A short time ago, it looked like dominant F1 races and Mercedes were a thing of the past. However, the team’s 1-2 finish in Baku was its 4th consecutive win in the 2019 season. Ferrari was quite confident when they entered the weekend. However, things started to unravel during qualifying. Due to the unpredictable nature of the circuit and the quick racing trim, we uncovered why everything unfolded as it did.

Racing Against Bottas

This wasn’t a classic F1 race. At first, Lewis Hamilton looked like he got a phenomenal start that would place him in the lead. However, Bottas held pole position after Turn 1 and also kept Hamilton behind him during Turn 2. A horrible start cost the driver in China, and he refused to let history repeat itself.

The start of the race was mostly the critical moment for Bottas as Hamilton would get this close again for the entire Baku race. Mercedes was also never under real pressure from Ferrari in the race other than the activity that occurred during the pit-stop window. Even though the challenge from Ferrari faded, Bottas was required to keep his composure because Hamilton kept pushing until the end of the race.

Although most spectators are still sceptical about Bottas 2.0, we believe he was fantastic in Baku and Australia. However, on both occasions, Hamilton seemed to settle for the second position once he lost the first fight. One factor that shouldn’t bring any doubt to spectators is that Bottas has the innate talent to create a genuinely exceptional battle for the title. Every pole position will give Bottas a boost in confidence. This is something that was genuinely lacking during the 2018 season.

Where Exactly Was Ferrari?

Ferrari didn’t have the pace when it mattered most. It’s unusual as this weekend looked like Ferrari’s weekend until Charles Leclerc managed to misjudge his breaking point when he attempted to take Turn 8 during Saturday’s qualifying. That incident managed to shit the momentum and assisted Mercedes to take the first and second position on the grid which allowed them to dominate the race on Sunday.

For a moment, it looked like Leclerc might have raced worth mentioning as he started on medium tyres as opposed to soft tyres that all drivers at the front opted in for. If the safety car was deployed when Bottas was still over 9 second behind, Leclerc might have had a free pit-stop that would have allowed him to take the lead with a brand-new set of hard compound tyres to make it until the end. However, while each lap passed without the safety car, it assisted Bottas to get closer to the long first stint of Leclerc which eventually allowed him to retake the lead.

Magic Johnson Resigns as President of Basketball Operations

Magic Johnson managed to get the title he always dreamed of having. He had the power to successfully guide one of the most recognizable and popular franchises in the world of sports.

As the President of Basketball Operations, he could do anything he wanted when it came to the Los Angeles Lakers. He could effortlessly trade any player he wanted or fire a head coach at any time. Jeanie Buss, the owner of the Lakers, informed him about this on several occasions.

However, the only thing that Magic Johnson truly wanted is to be Magic Johnson again where he will be remembered as a Basketball ambassador, Lakers legend, international celebrity, and beloved civic leader. It’s fantastic being such a guy and there’s no denying that he was great at it.

Resigning as President of Basketball Operations

Being the president of basketball operations for the Los Angeles Lakers is undeniably hard, no one can argue that fact. And Magic Johnson could never truly figure out how to be himself in that significant role. It’s for that very reason that he decided to resign on Tuesday evening.

As astonishing as the decision was for most of the people within the national Basketball League, Magic Johnson was incredibly clear when he started to explain himself. “I was far more happier as a player as oppose to being the president,” Magic Johnson stated. “Once it comes to making trades, you are definitely not happy.”

Magic Johnson starting listing all kinds of unsavoury things regarding his position during a media session that lasted more than an hour, spilling out into the corridors and hallways of Staples Center prior to the final game of the Lakers season. Johnson didn’t appreciate the whispering and backstabbing that came with the job title. To be honest, he didn’t like anything that came with the role.

Comments from Magic Johnson

The tampering and the fines and this and that, I couldn’t assist young players who wanted me to assist them, and I couldn’t tweet about it either. Take Russel Westbrook for instance, that was a marvelous feature the other day. However, I wasn’t allowed to even tweet to congratulate him. If I decided to do that, everyone would have thought that it was tampering. I honestly don’t like that as I need to be free to do exactly what I want for myself.”

Magic Johnson also didn’t like the fact that he had to make decisions on retaining coach Luke Walton. Johnson was diagnosed with HIV during 1991 where he literally starred at death in the face. He decided to beat the illness and he eventually did. Thereafter, he decided to spend his remaining time on earth exactly the way he wanted. “I have a fantastic life. Damn, even outside this place I have a fantastic life, so what exactly am I doing here? I will be going back to my fantastic life and I’m really looking forward to it.”

South Africa Needs To Place More Trust in the Back-Three

The Super Rugby sides in South Africa can produce better results, allowing the South African national team to provide a stronger challenge in Japan during the Rugby World Cup. All they have to do is place a little bit of trust in the back-three players according to Naas Botha.

The excellent teams in the nation are well-known for their prowess and strength when it comes to their forwards. However, Botha recently told reporters that the fullbacks and wingers could also offer match-winning abilities when they are given a chance.

South African Rugby Players

Curwin Bosch, who made his first start of the Rugby season as a fullback, was awarded man of the match when the Sharks grandly destroyed the Lions on Friday at Emirates Airline Park. Bosch managed to combine phenomenally with his wingers Lwazi Movovo, Makazole Mpimpi, and Aphelele Fassi as the replacement for a living embodiment of the point made by Botha that we haven’t seen for a very long time from a South African team.

Elsewhere this season in Super Rugby, Cornell Hendricks, Rosko Specman, and Warrick Gelant have impressed incredibly while playing for the Bulls once they received a limited opportunity to prove their worth on the field. It’s necessarily only the Stormers that have struggled to produce a back-three worth mentioning.

Factor in that Aphiwe Dyantyi and S’busiso Nkosi, who were likely the first pick wingers for the Boks before the Super Rugby season kicked off, have both suffered injuries during the season. Cheslin Kolbe and Willie le Roux is undoubtedly going to be on the plane towards Japan, subject to fitness and form, then coach Rassie Erasmus of the Springboks has a wealth of players at his disposal to consider for the number 15, 14, and 11 jumpers.

Comments from Naas Botha

“I am well aware that South Africans love direct rugby. However, when it comes to the back-three South African rugby players, consisting of a fullback and two wings. I will always believe that when you provide space for them in a one-on-one situation, that they will be able to surprise you,” stated Botha who is a Hall of Famer who played for both South Africa and Northern Transvaal, winning a total of 28 caps with South Africa.

“Most of the time, South Africans believe that placing pressure on the opposition with a kick is the right choice. However, if the ball doesn’t fall where you want it to fall, the opposing team usually scores against us after that. This is exactly the reason why we need to be extra careful in the upcoming Rugby World Cup.”

With all this in mind, Naas Botha is still pleased with the current Rugby situation in South Africa as well as the team that has been selected for the squad that will go to Japan in September. He only wants the team to focus on their weaknesses and what their opponents tend to do in each game to succeed.