Monday, January 28, 2013

2013 Waste Management Phoenix Open Preview and Predictions

The 2013 PGA Tour season leaves the oceanside for the first time this year and heads inland to Phoenix and the Waste Management Phoenix Open.  A favorite of many tour professionals, the Phoenix Open is traditionally held the weekend of the Super Bowl.  Once again, numerous big name players headline the field.  And who can go to Scottsdale without talking about the stadium hole, #16. 

TV and Radio Schedule
Thursday, Jan. 31: 4-7 PM ET The Golf Channel
Friday, Feb. 1: 4-7 PM ET The Golf Channel
Saturday, Feb 2: 1-3 PM ET The Golf Channel, 3-6 PM ET NBC
Sunday, Feb 3: 1-3 PM ET The Golf Channel, 3-6 PM ET NBC

Sirius XM Satellite Radio: PGA Tour Network
Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday: 1-7 PM ET

In the Field
The Waste Management Phoenix Open brings top players to the desert in Arizona.  Players don their favorite team's jersey at hole 16, and should not be afraid of the boos awaiting them for a bad tee shot.

Players to Watch
Keegan Bradley: Off to a slow start in 2013, Bradley will look to get his season jumpstarted in the desert.  After wins in the past two seasons, Bradley is looking to get his game fine-tuned for the season's first major at Augusta National.

Nicolas Colsaerts: The big-hitting Belgian is playing in his rookie season on the PGA Tour.  This will be his first time at TPC Scottsdale, so look for him to struggle in the first round but turn it around the next three days.

Rickie Fowler: Fans will be waiting for Fowler on hole 16 as he gives away coveted Puma Monoline caps.  Fowler struggled in his opening round at the Farmers Insurance Open but climbed back up the leaderboard nicely through the rest of the week.

Russell Henley: After a week off, Henley is refreshed and back to try to win his second career tour event.  Henley won the Sony Open and would like to add to his growing trophy case.

Hunter Mahan: A solid week in San Diego will propel Mahan to a solid Phoenix Open.  He is looking to make the Presidents Cup team after missing out on the 2012 Ryder Cup team.

Phil Mickelson: The third of five straight tournaments for Mickelson.  He will look to avenge his struggles at Torrey Pines with a solid finish in the desert.

Bubba Watson: After withdrawing from Torrey Pines with an illness, Bubba is in the field currently.  Hopefully he doesn't withdraw again, as he is one of the most exciting players on tour.

The Course:
TPC Scottsdale once again hosts the Phoenix Open.  Playing at just over 7200 yards and par 71, this course yields many low scores.

Holes to Watch
Hole 3: The first par 5 on the course, hole 3 is reachable by only the longest hitters.  A water hazard fronts the green and must be avoided for those attempting to reach the green in 2.

Hole 15: The first of 3 exciting holes to finish, hole 15 is a reachable par 5.  Water is in play on the tee shot as well as the approach, and the green almost has an island effect.  Players scores will range from 3 to 7+.

Hole 16: The signature hole on this golf course, if not the PGA Tour, this short par-3 brings a stadium-style enclosure.  It is the only fully-enclosed golf hole in the world.  Players enjoy the praise and dread the boos from the vocal fans on this hole.

Hole 17: A reachable par 4, the 17th hole allows players the chance to make a run down the stretch, but a water hazard left of the green is in play.

Even with all of the big names in the field, I think a surprise winner will take the 2013 Waste Management Phoenix Open.  Keegan Bradley and Rickie Fowler will contend, as will Phil Mickelson after avenging his struggles in San Diego.  But the winner will be Boo Weekly, who will finally put a putting weekend together with his solid ball striking.


  1. I love watching the players approach the 16th. I almost wish they could just have a live feed of the 16th for every shot. Love the crowds' enthusiasm!

    1. I couldn't agree more! Not a more exciting hole in the world, mainly for the fans' reactions.