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Devil Ball Golf

Five things we learned from The Barclays

Jonathan Wall
Devil Ball Golf

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Nick Watney / Getty Images

Let's be honest, we're all incredibly busy. Nobody has time to sit down and watch four rounds of golf coverage -- unless, of course, you watch TV for a living, and if that's the case, please email us your number. So in an effort to condense the tournament coverage for you into a few quick hits, here are five things we learned from The Barclays.

Nick Watney's now relevant on multiple fronts — It's hard to believe Watney's entire 2012 outlook changed in the span of just 24 hours, but his win at The Barclays couldn't have come at a better time. A non-factor in the FedExCup standings -- he was 49th to start the week -- and a Ryder Cup outsider, Watney found a way to become relevant on both fronts with one win. His success at The Barclays doesn't necessarily mean he's going to win $10 million and make the Ryder Cup team, but if we've learned anything from watching the playoffs and the Ryder Cup over the years, it's that having a hot hand late in the year is the way to go -- especially when you're trying to impress the Ryder Cup captain. Davis Love III will make his four captain's picks on September 4th, so the Deutsche Bank Championship is Watney's last shot to prove he's worthy of a spot on the American team.

[Related: Watney wins The Barclays, vaults into top spot in FedExCup standings]

The FedExCup continues to confuse — PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem won't admit it, but the FedExCup still needs a bit of tweaking. Jason Dufner, who opened the playoffs in second place, skipped the event and still found himself in sixth place going into the Deutsche Bank. The same goes for Nick Watney, who spent much of the year struggling to find consistency with his game. He was 49th at the start of the playoffs; one win later he's the points leader. What the FedExCup has basically taught us is that it's OK to skip an event if you're near the top of the standings, and play mediocre golf for most of the season. Based on those two examples alone, there's no question the FedExCup formula could use an overhaul.

Tiger Woods' weekend struggles continue at The Barclays — In 25 weekend rounds this year, Woods has managed to post an under par round on nine occasions. Nine. For a guy who used to be at his absolute best on Saturday and Sunday, he's made it clear with his play that he still has some work to do in the weekend department. Woods' 5-over 76 on Sunday was his worst final round performance of the year. He hit only 6 of 14 fairways and 6 of 18 greens, and then blew off the media after his round. Say what you will about three wins being a successful season, but if you know Woods, the only thing that matters at this point in his career is the number of major championship in his trophy case. He's still stuck on 14, and the way he's played this year on the weekend, he'll continue to stay on 14 until he figures things out.

Sergio Garcia runs out of gas on Sunday — So much for going back-to-back with another fill-in caddie on the bag. The Spaniard took a two-shot lead into the final round but failed to keep the mistakes to a minimum, opening with a bogey on the first hole and three more on the back-nine. His 4-over 75 ended a run of seven straight rounds in the 60s, an impressive feat that left Garcia surprisingly upbeat following his round.

"It's been two weeks‑‑ it's been two very good weeks," Garcia said. "Obviously I would loved to finish in a different way.  But to me, to be able to win last week and put myself in contention here again this week, I had a good shot at winning this tournament on this golf course, which is really, really tough and is testing you all the time."

Garcia will take one week off -- he's skipping the Deutsche Bank -- to recharge the batteries and be back at it for the BMW Championship.

Tiger Woods-Rory McIlroy pairing a dud — Well that was boring, wasn't it? After hyping up the McIlroy-Woods showdown at Bethpage Black, both players failed to do anything of note over the first two days and spent much of the round joking around. Neither was a factor over the weekend, and to be honest, Woods' back ended up being a bigger story than the over-hyped pairing. What exactly did we learn from the week? That we should considering tabling the rivalry talk for the time being.

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