Golf World

Super Shots

Our ranking of the best PGA Tour players since 1980 inspired a second list: Who hit the best shots in the same period. Here, club by club, are the best of the best

February 2014

What are the best shots ever hit with each club? The question coalesced while following Shaun Micheel during Q school a year ago. As you'll see, we think Micheel owns the 7-iron.

But who hit the most wonderful one, the most thrilling three, the most fantastic four, and so on? To complement Brett Avery's analysis of the best players on the PGA Tour since 1980, we considered the 45 million or so shots struck by the roughly 5,500 men (and three women) in the world's best golf league during the same period.

Context counts. Micheel, for instance, holed a 3-iron for double eagle on the sixth at Pebble Beach in the fourth round of the 2010 U.S. Open. But his stroke of genius earned him only a T-22. The albatross lacked the backstory to make our list of the best of the best.

Jack Nicklaus

Jack Nicklaus

No. 17, Augusta National GC, fourth round, 1986 Masters
The sun shone bright that Sunday, illuminating the beltless slacks and lank blond hair of Nicklaus, 46, in a battle with younger stars. After a mind-boggling run, the Olden Bear had 11 feet for one more birdie on a green harder to read than the stock market. The double-breaker was for the lead and an even larger legend. Nicklaus was up to the moment. Maybe the best putt ever? Yes sir!
Honorable mention: Costantino Rocca, No. 18, St. Andrews (Old), fourth round, 1995 British Open; Tiger Woods, No. 18, Torrey Pines GC (South), fourth round, 2008 U.S. Open
Phil Sandlin/AP Photo
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