Golf Buzz

Jim Herman
PGA Tour via YouTube
Jim Herman got a fist-bump from his caddie after chipping in for birdie on the 18th hole Thursday at the RSM Classic.
The two courses hosting the RSM Classic this week on St. Simon's Island, Ga., are more subtle than spectacular, and there weren't many jaw-dropping highlights in today's first round of the final PGA Tour event of the 2015 calendar year.
That doesn't mean there weren't some special shots, though, and Russell Henley and Jim Herman provided two of the best.
Henley missed the green on the par-3 17th hole on the Seaside Course, and his ball came to rest about 30 feet down the shaved apron off to the left of the putting surface. He faced a delicate chip back up the shaved slope and then down onto the green – and chipped his ball completely over the slope. 
The ball barely cleared the top of the slope – this was no Phil Mickelson flop shot – and landed barely on the putting surface. It bounced lightly a couple of times, then motored directly into the cup for a birdie.
By contrast, Jim Herman had a shorter but tougher shot on the 18th green of the Plantation Course. His third shot came to rest in some thick rough just a few feet off the putting surface, leaving him the tough task of getting the ball out but not blasting it way past the close-in pin.
He opened his stance way up, and hit the ball solid – maybe slightly more solid than he meant to – but his line was perfect. His ball flew about halfway to the flag, settled quickly and rolled confidently into the center of the cup for a birdie.
Herman wound up with a 6-under 66 on the par-72 Plantation Course, while Henley carded a 4-under 66 on the par-70 Seaside Course. Which of their shots was better? You tell us.
Rory McIlroy
European Tour via YouTube
Rory McIlroy's walk-off bunker birdie kept him close to Danny Willett in the seasonlong Race to Dubai title.
This week is a big one for Rory McIlroy. He's running neck-and-neck with England's Danny Willett for the top spot in the Race to Dubai – essentially the European Tour's version of the FedExCup – and this week's season-ending DP World Tour Championship will decide the title.
McIlroy was chugging through a so-so-round today, and dumped his third shot on the par-5 closing hole into a deep bunker just off the front right of the green. His lie was flat, which was good, but the bunker's face rose straight up about three feet in front of him, which was bad. 
Also bad: The green sloped sharply down, meaning that stopping the ball close to the hole would be difficult. But good: At least he had a fair amount of green to work with.
He blasted up and out, and his ball landed pretty softly up on the slope. It settled down quickly, then ran down the slope – and dropped in the front left part of the cup for a birdie.
That walk-off bunker birdie gave him a 4-under 68 – and left him tied with Willett after the first round. They're two shots off the lead heading into Friday's second round.
Here's Rory's bunker blast:
November 18, 2015 - 10:48am
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November 16, 2015 - 10:25am
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Graeme McDowell
PGA Tour/Twitter
Graeme McDowell picked the perfect time to hit a perfect 5-iron.

Graeme McDowell hadn't won on the PGA Tour in two seasons, but he raised the trophy in celebration Monday morning after this clutch approach shot on the first playoff hole at the OHL Classic.

This 5-iron is a beauty, particularly under the circumstances and conditions. If you're going to hit the shot of the tournament, do it when it counts.




McDowell sank the three-footer with authority and walked off the winner over Russell Knox and Jason Bohn.

November 16, 2015 - 8:39am
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Harold Varner III
PGA Tour/Twitter
PGA Tour rookie Harold Varner III almost can't believe that birdie putt went in the hole.

Harold Varner III made birdie at the 14th hole Monday morning in the final round of the OHL Classic.

So what, right? But that really doesn't describe how great this putt was. Not only was it from 70 feet away, but he did it with the wind whipping and in a driving rainstorm, on the most difficult hole on the course.



That's an impressive putt on a normal day, let alone in the conditions the players are facing in Mayakoba right now.



November 15, 2015 - 2:51pm
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Melissa Blanton
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PGA Tour/YouTube
Jason Bohn reacts as his ball hits the flagstick.

Jason Bohn was cruising through the final round of the OHL Classic at Mayakoba.

So why wouldn't he expect to hit it close when he stepped up to the tee on the 151-yeard par 3 8th hole?

Turns out it his distance was perfect. As in hit-the-flagstick perfect.



At the time Bohn had a share of the lead at 17-under, tied with Russell Knox.

His putt for birdie was delayed by four hours after rain forced players off the course, but he drained it once play resumed at 4:45 p.m. ET.

It wasn't the only replay-worthy shot from Bohn Sunday.

He hit his second shot a few yards shy of the green on the par-5 fifth hole.

Then he let his wedge play did the talking.


And those are the shots we'll never get tired of watching.