Golf's most important stories of 2017 summed up in 17 social-media posts
It's a sign of an outstanding year in professional golf when so many memorable things happened that it's hard to keep them all straight. Justin Thomas' impressive 59 en route to winning the Sony Open, following his TOC win, kicked off the year and was soon followed by a host of unusual and newsworthy events. Of course there was Lexi Thompson's run-in with the rules at the ANA Inspiration. Plus there was the exciting men's majors—arguably highlighted by Jordan Spieth's impressive rally at Royal Birkdale, but without a dud in the bunch in 2017. The FedEx Cup playoffs, Presidents Cup and the Race to Dubai all captured fans' interests, too. Indeed, this was a very good year for pro golf.
For a quick, skimmable review of 2017 in golf, we offer this scroll through the most noteworthy tweets and social-media posts.
Jordan Spieth and Justin Thomas have a very competitive friendship—as evidenced how much they enjoy pulling pranks on each other. With both buddies winning majors in 2017, we're pumped at the possibility of a JT/Spieth duel at a major in 2018.
Thomas ended the year so impressively—winning his first major, taking home the Tour Championship and stepping up at the Presidents Cup—that it's almost easy to forget just how good JT's start of 2017 was. And that was highlighted by becoming the seventh player to shoot 59 in PGA Tour history.
Then Adam Hadwin upped that number to eight players as part of the 59 club (and nine who have shot sub-60, counting Jim Furyk's 58 in 2016). Let's not forget the Canadian's impressive round with a tour-record-tying 13 birdies at the CareerBuilder Challenge.
It's tough to predict how we'd react to a rules situation like the one Lexi Thompson faced at the ANA Inspiration. The enforcement of a four-stroke penalty costed the American phenom the first major of the year. But perhaps the biggest takeaway? Besides golf's governing bodies now changing its rules because of Lexi's fate, how well Lexi handled the situation, undoubtedly winning over more fans in defeat than she would've in victory.
The hard-fought battle between European stalwarts Sergio Garcia and Justin Rose made for a tremendous finish to the 2017 Masters. And their buddy, Rory McIlroy, summed up the result nicely with this tweet.
Just like many golfers around the world, Gary Player was disappointed he didn't get the nod to #SB2K17.
The golf world was buzzing after Justin Thomas' 63 at Erin Hills—including his sensational eagle at the 18th hole at Erin Hills—to card golf's major magic number.
And Dufner summed up JT's accomplishment perfectly. (Of course, JT didn't take home the major, with Brooks Koepka winning by four. But, spoiler alert: JT would get his major a couple months later.)
Speaking of record-breaking rounds and Justin Thomas, JT's roast of Johnny Miller as Branden Grace went for a 62 during the third round of The Open Championship is probably the front-runner for social-media post of the year.
Some of the most memorable scenes from golf in 2017 include the celebrations around the 18th green after Jordan Spieth holed out from the bunker at the Travelers Championship. And we appreciated Spieth's appreciation of this angle from the grounds at TPC River Highlands.
Justin Thomas' win at the PGA Championship was the highlight in what was a career year in 2017. How hot was JT's 2017? His buddy Rickie Fowler sweat through his shirt in his presence. To be fair, it was North Carolina in August...
Before the LPGA's Cambia Portland Classic, Stacy Lewis announced she'd donate her earnings to Hurricane Harvey relief efforts in her hometown of Houston. Then, of course, Lewis went on to win the tournament in what might be our favorite golf story of 2017.
Then there's the most presidential selfie of all time. Yes, there are also three presidents in this selfie.
Donald Trump made noise at two of golf's biggest events in 2017—first with the U.S. Women's Open, held at his own course in New Jersey. And then with his Sunday appearance at Liberty National, where the president showed up to celebrate with Team USA. It marked the first time a sitting president attended the happenings.
Star Wars-themed stingers from Tiger were the updates we never knew we needed from Tiger.
The build-up to an 18-man exhibition golf tournament in December could be felt throughout the sports world.
And yes, there was probably way too much excitement about Tiger's return. And tweets like this sum that up.