Get Ready, Twitter — Here Comes Kevin Na. Well, Maybe. No, Wait. Yes… No! Maybe… Yes!

If you caught any golf on the tube or online today you couldn’t miss the new trending topic of the PGA: Golfer Kevin Na and his unbelievable 5-minute pre-shot routine, where he practice swings, backs away, practices a few more times, then even maybe throwing in a full-swing miss over the ball (which is apparently legal) and then backing off again, practicing some more and then… finally… HITTING THE D@MN BALL.

Did we mention he’s leading the Players Championship, aka the “fifth major?” So all these other guys, with their high profile swing coaches, hours spent on the range, new souped up clubs, and monster man fitness routines… and they’re being beaten by a guy who is afraid to hit the ball?

If you want to know what’s behind Na’s eminently unique pre-shot approach there is no shortage of exhaustive stories out there (here’s a pretty good explanation with a video interview link). Geoff Shackelford also has some great video links so you can relive the agony. For the casual viewer I hope NBC tomorrow opens up its prime twosome coverage with some kind of rules explanation as to why it’s OK for Na to take a full whiff over the ball. (Here is the rule in question and a good explanation of why it’s not a penalty in tour play.) But for most golfers watching I am guessing it was a “C’mon man!” moment. If you’re playing with me and you pull one of those, my response would be, “that’s one.”

We’ll let the stewards of golf wring their hands over what the slow-playing Na would do to the soul of the game should his methods produce a victory. Here at MSR we will be watching the Twitter trending scorecard to see how high up his waggles get him.

Watching Golf this Week: The Players Championship

As we said earlier in the week, it’s all about the island green 17th hole at The Players Championship, aka the “fifth major.” I still don’t agree with that sentiment since to me the whole Pete Dye railroad ties-thing seems like mini golf. Plus, there is absolutely no tradition behind The Players equal to that of the heritage of the U.S. Open or British Open, or the grandeur of Bobby Jones’ idea, the Masters.

Even the PGA to me has more major muster than The Players, simply again because of its connection to course pros and the history of the sport. But that doesn’t mean we won’t watch all the big guns this week, since there is (hooray!) online coverage again. (I just watched defending champ K.J. Choi rinse one at the 17th as I am writing this.) Now all Tiger needs to do is conjure up some more 17th hole putting magic to put all the chattering to rest.

Here’s where to follow the action:


(all times Eastern)
Thursday, May 10 — Golf Channel, 1 p.m. — 7 p.m.; 9 p.m. — 12 a.m.
Friday, May 11 — Golf Channel, 1 p.m. — 7 p.m.; 9 p.m. — 12 a.m.
Saturday, May 12 — Golf Channel, 12 p.m. — 2 p.m.; NBC, 2 p.m. — 7 p.m.
Sunday, May 13 — Golf Channel, 12 p.m. — 2 p.m.; NBC, 2 p.m. — 7 p.m.

SIRIUS XM (Satellite)
12 p.m. — 7 p.m., Thursday-Sunday

The PGA’s Live@ is back! This page seems to be the best for links to whatever they are showing on @Live. Here is the @Live schedule:
Thursday/Friday: 9 a.m. — 7 p.m.
Saturday/Sunday: 12 p.m. — 7 p.m.

Get another online fix via Shot Tracker for the TPC.

GolfWeek is back with its hole by hole recap of El Tigre’s swings… Here’s round one.


Geoff Shackelford — well known golf writer.
Golf Channel — official Golf Channel feed
@PGATOUR — official PGA Twitter feed
@StephanieWei — great golf writer who is a Twitter fiend

The main TPC page has an exhaustive hole-by-hole description of TPC Sawgrass.

K.J. Choi.

1. Hunter Mahan, 1,378 points
2. Bubba Watson, 1372
3. Rory McIlroy, 1,290
4. Phil Mickelson, 1,178
5. Carl Pettersson, 1,135

See the full standings for the FedEx Cup points list.

1. Rory McIlroy; 2. Luke Donald; 3. Lee Westwood; 4. Bubba Watson; 5. Hunter Mahan.
See the official World Golf Ranking list.

Online Golf Back This Week: It’s All About the Island Green at The Players Championship

Call this an early version of “watching Golf this week” but we wanted to join in the leadup hype for what some call the “fifth major,” The Players Championship. The good news for those of us stuck at desks is that the PGA’s live online coverage, @Live, returns this week for the big-ticket players event.

There’s even an online “preview” show scheduled for Wednesday evening, from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Eastern. On Thursday and Friday @Live online coverage goes from 9 a.m. Eastern to 7 p.m., and on the weekend it’s Noon to 7 p.m. each day.

Though not as complete as the Masters online coverage, the PGA’s @Live broadcasts are pretty good, with all the camera angles and commentary you expect from a broadcast TV show. I hope there’s a 17th hole cam because this week is all about the Island Green. More viewing details later in the week.