Even with a history of painful near-misses, when Dustin Johnson gives himself a chance to win through 54 holes, he's proved to be a good guy to bet on. Sunday at the RBC Canadian Open, Johnson grabbed hold of the solo lead right from the start and never let go, calmly strutting his way to a 19th career PGA Tour victory and joining some elite company in the process.
The win comes off a rough stretch by Johnson's standards in his last two starts, one being a solo third that featured a tough weekend at Shinnecock Hills during the U.S. Open, and the other being his first missed cut in over a year at the Open Championship at Carnoustie. But as Johnson has often proved in the last three years, anytime you question where his game is at he usually responds in impressive fashion.
That's what he did on Sunday at Glen Abbey Golf Club outside of Toronto, carding a final-round 66 to win by a comfortable three strokes over Whee Kim and Byeong Hun An, who each carded three-under 69s that weren't enough to keep pace with the World No. 1.
"It means a lot, it's the last time the RBC is going to be here at Glen Abbey," said Johnson, who overpowered the Jack Nicklaus-design all week, leading the field in strokes-gained/off-the-tee. "It's a golf course I really like, I play well at it. So, it definitely means a lot to win here, got a lot of fans out here thanks to Wayne [Gretzky] and the family. It was a great week."
As Johnson cruised down the back nine, it was easy to see why he loves the course so much. His towering drives made Glen Abbey's three back-nine par 5s play like par 4s, with Johnson needing only short irons to reach the green on his second shots. The most impressive display came at the par-5 16th, where Johnson missed the fairway with his tee shot, leaving him a difficult 180 yard approach on a downslope, out of the rough to a back left pin. For Johnson, it was a pitching wedge that landed on the green and just rolled off the back, leading to one of his seven birdies on Sunday.
Even a weather delay that stopped play for roughly 90 minutes couldn't derail Johnson.
The victory makes him the first player since Tiger Woods to win three or more events in three consecutive years, Woods accomplishing the feat in 2009. It also puts him in a tie for 38th on the all-time tour win list, joining Hall-of-Famers Ben Crenshaw, Ernie Els, Doug Ford, Hubert Green and Tom Kite.
"It takes a lot of work," Johnson said. "A lot of support, I got a great family and get a lot of support from them. They're a great team to help me get to where I'm at."
For Kim and An it was still a good week, each of them matching their season-best T-2 finish.
Keegan Bradley, whose eight-under 64 was the low round of the day, finished in solo fourth, which gives him four finishes of T-7 or better this year. Abraham Ancer finished in solo fifth and Tommy Fleetwood and Danny Lee tied for sixth.