Dustin Johnson disappeared into a small valley of bushes and high grass as he searched for another errant tee shot, this one costing him a double bogey and making the final round of the Tournament of Champions in Kapalua, Hawaii, far more exciting than he needed it to be.
Undaunted, he blasted driver on the next hole despite the potential for more trouble. This one was pure, rolling back off the front of the green. Johnson chipped in from 50 feet for eagle and he was on his way.
Such a wild sequence – double bogey-eagle – is par for the course for this big-hitting American.
Johnson had a five-shot lead after seven holes. His lead was down to one shot with five holes to play. He wound up closing with a 5-under 68 for a 16-under 203 and a four-shot win over defending champion Steve Stricker on Tuesday.
“It was nowhere near ho-hum,” Johnson said.
The winners-only tournament didn’t start until the fourth day because of gusts that topped 40 mph, forcing officials to shorten it to 54 holes. Once it finally got under way, it was over in 29 hours.
Johnson won for the sixth consecutive season since leaving college at Coastal Carolina, the longest streak since Tiger Woods won in 14 straight years. Only Phil Mickelson (nine) has a longer active streak.
Johnson also added a peculiar footnote to his record. He now has won the past three PGA Tour events reduced to 54 holes because of weather – rain at Pebble Beach in 2009, a hurricane at The Barclays in 2011 and the windy opener in 2013.