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SBD/February 26, 2014/Events and Attractions
Now The Fun Begins: Honda Classic Boasts PGA Tour's Strongest Field To Date
Published February 26, 2014
GO WEST, YOUNG MEN? GOLF DIGEST's Ron Sirak noted with both the Honda Classic and WGC-Cadillac Championship having gained in stature in recent years, the West Coast swing has "lost" its prominence. Mickelson played "three times on the eight-event Hawaii-California-Arizona leg of the schedule" this year, the most of any of the top six ranked golfers. Woods, McIlroy and Henrik Stenson only played in one tournament each, and Woods, Mickelson and Adam Scott skipped last week's WGC-Accenture Match Play event. Sirak wrote the West Coast swing "has been hurt by the success of the PGA Tour." The creation of the WGC events in '99 "was a boost for the Left Coast because it got the Match Play," but Doral "was given WGC status and the FedEx Cup was created" in '07. Sirak: "Suddenly, between the WGC, FedEx, The Players and the majors, the best had a lot of their dance card filled" (GOLFDIGEST.com, 2/25). In California, Larry Bohannan wrote it is "easy to see that the West Coast swing has suffered from the backloading of the PGA Tour schedule." Some players, especially Woods and Mickelson, "played more golf on the West Coast swing before the FedEx Cup and even into the first few years of the FedEx Cup than they do now" (Palm Springs DESERT NEWS, 2/25).