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Here's how bad Max Homa wants to get back to playing on the PGA Tour

April 28, 2020

Cliff Hawkins

The PGA Tour’s Twitter King would rather be making golf swings than roasting them. Much rather.

Max Homa, who has emerged as a fan favorite with his ruthless takedowns of average golfers below average moves—and his down-to-earth personality—said he’d go back to basics if it meant competing again on Tour. On a call with reporters on Tuesday, Homa was asked if, for instance, he would be OK competing without caddies.

“It would stink, but we’d finally have to blame ourselves for being unprepared,” Homa said. “It’s not like I’m not gonna play. It would be weird, and I play golf without Joe [Greiner] carrying my bag when I’m at home, so I think we could handle it.

“I’m hoping they don’t make us carry staff bags, because that would get a little bit difficult. But at this point, I would carry two staff bags to play golf in a tournament if things could just go back to normal. Yeah, it’d be odd, but who knows?”

Who knows indeed. It has been 47 days since the coronavirus pandemic halted the PGA Tour after Thursday of the Players Championship, and there are still 45 days until play is set to re-start at the Charles Schwab Challenge in Fort Worth. Texas governor Greg Abbott announced that his state’s stay-at-home order would be allowed to expire on May 1, which would seem to suggest holding a PGA Tour event—albeit without fans—might be possible a month-plus after that.

Possible, yes. But comfortable?

“I liken this question to me asking you what your favorite thing to watch [on TV] right now is, but two months from now,” Homa said. “It can change. I know the Tour is going to do their absolute best, and they are doing their best, to make sure that we are gonna come back at the right time and when it’s safe. There’s a date in place, June 11, and I think there’s a lot that can change between now and then.”

Homa said that he has ramped up his practice regimen a bit now that there is a re-start date on the horizon. Given his solid start to the 2019-’20 season—he currently ranks 47th in the FedEx Cup—he says he won’t feel pressure to compete every week when play does resume, noting that five or six weeks in a row is just as tough on the body now as it was before the pandemic.

Still, he’ll be anxious to go. Golf courses in Arizona, where Homa lives, never fully closed, which means he’s been able to practice at a club and at his home—where his setup is a mat and a big ol’ orange net, which he compared to Tiger Woods’ famous backyard setup. Apart from that, it’s been a whole lot of TV watching.

“There are so many good shows. ‘Ozark’ came out not that long ago, but just don’t watch ‘Westworld.’ You guys are probably smart enough, but it’s just too frickin’ confusing. So that show has really messed up our quarantine.”

This was supposed to be the week that Homa defended his title from last year’s Wells Fargo Championship, where his three-shot victory capped a remarkable comeback from the depths of his struggles just two years earlier, when he missed the cut in 15 of his 17 Tour starts. That victory also qualified him for his first Masters.

“It’s hard to get caught up about your sad feelings about not playing the Masters when people would do quite a bit to just to be able to go back to work, or to be healthy,” Homa said. “So it’s hard to be down for too long … but to be watching re-runs is not exactly how I pictured my first Masters going. Fortunately I’ll be able to play another one fairly soon.”