Category: AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am

February 08, 2013

VIDEO: Chris Berman struggles in bunker at Pebble Beach

Posted at 12:35 PM by Mike Walker

ESPN personality Chris Berman puts the "amateur" in pro-am with this bunker shot in the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am on Thursday.

Berman is playing in the pro-am with fellow Connecticut native J.J. Henry.

Live Coverage of the 2013 Pebble Beach Pro-Am: Round 2

Posted at 9:51 AM by live blogged the second round at the 2013 Pebble Beach Pro-Am.

February 07, 2013

Live Coverage of the 2013 Pebble Beach Pro-Am: Round 1

Posted at 9:31 AM by will live-blog the opening round at the Pebble Beach Pro-Am beginning at 3 p.m. ET.

February 06, 2013

Dustin Johnson paired with girlfriend's dad Wayne Gretzky at AT&T

Posted at 5:55 PM by Cameron Morfit

PaulinaDustin Johnson, who won the season-opening Hyundai TOC with the comely Paulina Gretzky in his gallery [right], and who has been all over Twitter with Paulina ever since, will be paired with her father, the former hockey great Wayne Gretzky, in this week's AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am.

The pairing is among several intriguing pro-am combos at this week's tournament, among them Jason Day and San Francisco 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh, and Robert Garrigus and pitcher Justin Verlander.

Gretzky, who grew up in Brantford, Ontario, Canada, where he had a chance to play with the legendary Moe Norman, is an avid golfer who has had memberships to several clubs, among them Whisper Rock in Scottsdale, Ariz., and Sherwood C.C. in Westlake Village, Calif. He plays off an 11 handicap.

Paulina Gretzky, 24, is a model, actress and singer, and is the oldest of Wayne Gretzky and actress Janet Jones's five children. Paulina first made a splash with several suggestive Twitter photos in 2011 and remains active on the social media website

Johnson, who in 2012 was followed by LPGA siren Natalie Gulbis at the Hyundai TOC -- Johnson denied the relationship but withdrew from the following week's Sony Open -- is aiming for his third victory at the star-studded AT&T at Pebble Beach, Spyglass Hill and Monterey Peninsula Country Club. He posted a picture on his Twitter account Wednesday of himself and Wayne Gretzky wearing yellow bucket hats

Photo: Paulina Gretzky at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions in January (Getty Images).


Photo Gallery: Paulina Gretzky and Dustin Johson's Twitter photos

Press Tent Blog: Paulina Gretzky and Dustin Johnson together at Kapalua

February 17, 2012

Truth & Rumors: Why PGA National is 'perfect' for Tiger

Posted at 3:08 PM by Alan Bastable

The last time Tiger Woods played the Honda Classic, he hadn’t even won a U.S. Amateur yet. It was 1993, and the tournament was held at Westin Hills G&CC in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Tiger missed the cut. Still, there’s good reason to like Tiger’s chances when he rejoins the Honda field at PGA National in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., in a couple of weeks. Speaking with the Palm Beach Post, Tommy Roy, NBC Sports’s top golf producer, noted:

“…I think this golf course is right in his wheelhouse.

“If you look at the stats through the years, the leaders always play the Bear Trap well. Those three holes [Nos. 15-17] require cut shots most of the time, depending on the wind, and that's playing right into Tiger's strength with the power cut that he's playing. The other factor is that he always putts well on Bermuda greens.

"It would seem this golf course is almost perfect for him."

Finchem on the Tiger Effect

The Honda will benefit from Tiger’s presence, but Tim Finchem continues to preach that TW’s not essential to the success of the Tour. Earlier this week the commish told Jill Painter of the L.A. Daily News:

"It's always good to have everybody play. Tiger has gotten into a schedule that in his mind works, and we have a great respect for that. It stands out when the best player over the last 15 years doesn't have a tournament on his schedule. Tiger Woods is bigger than life.

"People are surprised to learn Tiger plays in one of three events on average. And yet, over the last 15 years, all of our tournaments have grown. While it's nice [if Woods plays], it's not fundamental."

Mr. Commissioner, you might want to see these numbers

The Tour may not flat-line when Tiger stays home, but as has been well documented, TV ratings suffer. Matt Yoder at underscored that point by delving deep into the ratings of the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, which enjoyed a huge boost with Charlie Wi Tiger Woods in the mix last Sunday.

It's only one tournament examined in a vacuum, but the ratings data from Pebble Beach tell an interesting story. Here are the numbers since 2000 of the Pebble Beach Pro-Am (thanks to the acclaimed person behind TVSportsRatings, whoever he or she is) with the total average number of viewers for CBS's weekend coverage and what it means for the PGA Tour... 

2000 4.1
2001 5.9 
2002 4.5 
2003 4.1 
2004 4.1 
2005 5.0 
2006 3.3 
2007 3.6 
2008 2.9 
2009 1.6 
2010 1.9 
2011 2.9 
2012 5.7

A few takeaways from those numbers...

*Tiger Woods made his first appearance this year at Pebble Beach for the early season tournament since 2002. Woods played at Pebble Beach in 2000, 2001, 2002, and 2012. The average number of viewers for those 4 tournaments was 5.05 million, including a Monday finish in 2000 (thus the low 4.1 number). The average number of viewers for the 9 tournaments Tiger didn't play at Pebble from 2003-2011? Just 3.27 million. That's an increase of 54% for Pebble Beach when Tiger has played since 2000.

…As long as the PGA Tour is so utterly dependent on Woods for ratings success, how can they expect to be healthier without Tiger's presence? Even in 2012, it's a question the PGA Tour is still seeking an answer to.

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January 25, 2012

Truth & Rumors: Injuries knock Tebow out of Pebble Beach, Ben Crane's new video, Bubba Watson's pink driver

Posted at 12:48 PM by Jillian Whalen

Those looking forward to some Tebowing on the greens at Pebble Beach are going to be disappointed. According to Golf Channel's Ryan Ballengee, Tebow will not be participating in the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am due to injuries sustained in the Broncos' playoff game against New England.

Tebow suffered injuries to the chest and ribs during the game against the Patriots, reportedly including torn rib cartilage and bruised lungs. The former Florida Gator would not have played in the AFC Championship game had the Broncos won.

"Due to the injuries, it looks like he's a no-go," Tournament Director Steve Worthy said.

Patriots quarterback Tom Brady is still committed to the event, as is Bill Belichick. 

Crane's other favorite sport
Ben Crane and his helmet have finally returned to let us know he has a lot left in the tank ...on the uneven bars.


It’s not all pommel horses and floor routines, though. For every 100,000 views, Farmers Insurance will donate $1,000 to charity, and up to $5,000, on behalf of Crane.

Pretty in Pink
While Dustin Johnson, Jason Day and other TaylorMade stars are sporting white drivers, and Rickie Fowler seems to have bright orange everything, Bubba Watson is trumping them all with his new pink Ping G20 driver. Every drive Bubba bombs with his pink hardware will help his new charity, “Bubba and Friends Drive to a Million.” Watson’s personal website has the details:

Last year, he dubbed himself Bubba Long – averaging 315 yards per drive on the PGA Tour. This year, he's Bubba Long in Pink.

PING will be with Bubba every step of the way – especially on the tee box – as he drives toward his goal of $1 million while relying on his custom-painted, matte-pink finish PING G20 driver and pink True Temper Grafalloy Bi-Matrix shaft.

PING will donate $300 for the first 300 drives measuring 300 or more yards in 2012 to help Bubba reach the $1 million mark and has already contributed $10,000 to the effort.

According to Golf Channel, Watson had 483 drives of more than 300 yards last season. Golf photographer Allan Henry tweeted an image of the driver, and it’s safe to say it will be hard to miss.


No word yet on whether the General Lee will also be getting a new paint job.  

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January 13, 2012

Truth & Rumors: Tim Tebow headed to Pebble pro-am?

Posted at 11:48 AM by Alan Bastable

Move over, Bill Murray. Here comes Tim Tebow.

Tebow, the wildly intriguing Denver Broncos quarterback, might be joining the party at the Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, according to Brian Wacker at

“There has been some discussion for a month or so between us and him,” Ollie Nutt, President and CEO of the Monterey Peninsula Foundation said Thursday. “There is definitely an interest [from both parties].”

Nutt confirmed that the tournament is holding a spot in the field for the Broncos quarterback, who grew up playing golf in the Jacksonville, Fla., area.

But Nutt denied an earlier report that Tebow would be paired with Tiger Woods.

A more likely scenario will see Woods paired with Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo, who is already committed to the tournament and has played with Woods before. Ryan Palmer, who lives in Dallas and is friends with Romo, confirmed as much as well, saying that Romo already told him that he is playing with Woods.

The early scouting report on Tebow the golfer: a middling talent with a flare for 18th hole heroics.

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Some good news for Jason Gore, who with an assist from Twitter landed a spot in his hometown tournament, L.A.’s Northern Trust Open:


January 10, 2012

Truth & Rumors: Pebble Beach Pro-Am made changes for Tiger

Posted at 12:58 PM by Mike Walker

Ron Kroichick of the San Francisco Chronicle says Tiger Woods’s decision to play the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am for the first time in 10 years explains recent changes to the tournament.

Woods made it official Monday: He's returning to the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am next month. This will be his first appearance in the AT&T in 10 years, and his decision vividly illustrates why tournament officials reshaped their event in June 2009.

That's when the Shore Course at Monterey Peninsula Country Club replaced Poppy Hills in the rotation and when the field size was reduced from 180 pros to 156. The changes were designed to strengthen the field as a whole, no question. They also were designed, specifically, to lure back Woods.

"Without those moves, this (Woods' return) may not have happened," said Ollie Nutt, CEO of the Monterey Peninsula Foundation. "This validates we're doing the right thing."

Bloomberg says Trump didn’t get deal on NYC course

The New York Times looks at the proposed deal between the city government and Donald Trump to operate Ferry Point Park Golf Course in the Bronx. The proposal would have Trump Golf run the city-built course, which is scheduled to open in 2014. 

Under the Ferry Point proposal, the company, known as Trump Golf, would pay $10 million to build a clubhouse and would pay no licensing fees the first four years of the 20-year deal. In Year 5, the company would pay the greater of $300,000 or 7 percent of annual gross revenues. The amount would rise annually, ending in Year 20 at the greater of $470,000 or 10 percent of gross revenues. Trump Golf would also be required to pay 3 percent of gross revenues generated by any other sublicensed vendors at the golf course.

Some critics are charging that Trump is getting a sweetheart deal, but Mayor Michael Bloomberg disagrees.

“I’m not sure he got a great deal,” Mr. Bloomberg said. He later added: “These are not terribly profitable things in this day and age. More golf courses are closing than opening across the country."

Stray Shots: Things we saw while wondering why people are acting like Elin Nordegren is the first rich person to ever tear down a house to build a new one…

CBS Sports’ Steve Elling asked a PGA Tour official if the Tour has any problem with Sean O’Hair saying an apparent curse word in a new TaylorMade advertisement. The official hadn’t seen it yet. (Via Steve Elling’s Short Game Blog)

2012 is the year the robots will learn golf. (Via CNN

Power couple Rory McIlroy and Caroline Wozniacki had a bet on who would win a tournament first. She won. (Via The Chicago Tribune

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January 09, 2012

Tiger Woods to start PGA Tour season at Pebble Beach

Posted at 10:21 AM by Mike Walker

Tiger-Woods-2000-US-Open-SI-coverThe worst-kept secret in golf isn’t a secret anymore.

Tiger Woods announced on his website Monday that he will play his first PGA Tour event of the year at the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, on Feb. 9-12.

"I'm excited to start my PGA Tour season at the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am," Woods said in a statement. "AT&T is a great partner to my Foundation, and I'm looking forward to playing in this event. I haven't been to this tournament lately, but I have a lot of good memories at Pebble. It will be fun going back."

Woods hasn’t played the Pebble Beach pro-am event since 2002. He famously won the 2000 U.S. Open at Pebble Beach by a record 15 strokes and made the cover of Sports Illustrated.

"It's always been one of my favorite spots," Woods said in his statement. "It might be the prettiest place on earth."

Woods normally begins his PGA Tour season at Torrey Pines in January. This year, however, he is playing the HSBC Championship in Abu Dhabi, in the United Arab Emirates, on Jan. 26, the same week as the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines in San Diego. Woods had said that he would be adding a new event to his schedule and many people speculated that it would be Pebble Beach. On his website, Woods mentioned some of the changes to the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am that might have made the tournament more appealing to him.

Two major changes have occurred in the AT&T tournament since he last competed. The field has been reduced from 180 pros and amateurs to 156, which has improved the pace of play. In addition, the Shore Course at Monterey Peninsula Country Club has replaced Poppy Hills Golf Course in the three-course rotation, which includes Pebble Beach and Spyglass Hill Golf Course.

"I've never played Monterey Peninsula and am looking forward to it," Woods said. "From all I've heard, it's a wonderful course and the greens are fast."

If Woods plays his usual schedule of events, his next event after Pebble Beach will be the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship in Tucson, Ariz., on Feb. 22. Expectations for Woods are high this year after his season-ending victory at the Chevron World Classic in December.

Tiger Woods Photos: Life in Pictures | Major Victories | SI Covers

December 14, 2011

Truth & Rumors: More buzz over Tiger at Pebble?

Posted at 1:43 PM by Mike Walker

In November, the Associated Press said, “Indications are that Woods plans a return to the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am for the first time since 2002” after Woods announced he was opening his season at the HSBC Championship in Abu Dhabi and skipping his traditional Torrey Pines stop. On Tuesday, Lee Siegel of CSN Bay Area said he has heard Woods will play Pebble as well.

Seems like the AP report that had Tiger playing at Pebble Beach is accurate -- it's really going to happen. People I talked to seemed to think it’s pretty much a done deal.

The AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am takes place Feb. 9-12.

In the immortal words of Jean-Paul Sartre, 'Au revoir, elk'
The members at private TPC Snoqualmie Ridge in Washington state won’t have to share their course with elk anymore after state officials approved a plan to hunt the animals, according to The Seattle Post-Intelligencer.

General manager Ryan Whitney said over the past two years, the golf club has used flares to scare away the elk, traps to frighten them and even tagged several of them to follow their movement. But nothing worked, and the prized playing surface continued taking a beating.

"We've not only seen greater visits, but greater numbers coming," Whitney said.

With mounting damage, the state has finally approved a plan to kill several of the elk.

Expert hunters can even vie for the chance to shoot one of them from a designated area on the course.

The hunting will take place on Mondays, when the course is closed to golfers.

Rory’s ex says he always had thing for Caroline Wozniacki
Rory McIlroy’s ex-girlfriend Holly Sweeney told the Irish Sunday Mirror that she knew McIlroy liked current girlfriend, pro tennis player Caroline Wozniacki, but didn’t think he would actually start dating her.

"I always suspected he had a thing for her. He's always been a big fan of tennis. When he was watching the women's games he always said he fancied her but I didn't take it that seriously - little did I know.

"It was Rory that ran away with Caroline - not the other way around - so I guess I blame Rory, or both of them if I'm totally honest.

"I have to put the blame on him for what has happened but obviously I'm not her biggest fan ever."

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