Devil Ball Golf

Five things we learned from the Zurich Classic of New Orleans

Jonathan Wall
Devil Ball Golf

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Luke Donald / 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 Zurich Classic of New Orleans.

Jason Dufner waggles the field to death — With all due respect to Sergio Garcia, there's a new waggle king in town ... and he looks like the guy you'd find at your local watering hole on Friday evening. Jason Dufner may need nine waggles before every swing, but he made all of them count on Sunday, picking up his first PGA Tour win. After struggling to close things out at last year's PGA Championship, Dufner's weekend struggles continued this year (including at the Masters). It got to the point where some started to question if he'd ever win. It looks like we can put those questions to bed. The waggle jokes will continue, but with a victory finally under his belt, we're going to have to start taking Dufner's game seriously.

Ernie Els fails to capitalize on another golden opportunity — You have to feel for guys like Ernie Els. Once you've been to the top of a mountain, the trek back to the top can be incredibly difficult. Els knows that first-hand, after he missed a five-footer on the first playoff hole to secure his first win in two years. If this was a rare one-off people would probably chalk it up to an unlucky break. But when you have a missed four-footer (at the Transitions) and five-footer on your resume in a two-month span, well, you can pretty much assume something's amiss. The issue of course is Els' clutch putting. The silver lining is he now has three top-5 finishes this year and appears to still be a force at the age of 42. But until Ernie can get rid of the final round demons and make a putt when it matters, he's going to struggle in pressure-packed situations.

We can stop making a big deal about the top spot in the Official World Golf Ranking — There was a point not too long ago when the No. 1 ranking in the OWGR was considered a big deal. Players would work tirelessly to get to the top, and when they did, it was considered a major story. But now? Well let's just say it wasn't even the biggest story at the Zurich Classic. Luke Donald finished in third to once again move ahead of Rory McIlroy, who overtook the Englishman two weeks prior without even picking up a club. With Donald skipping the Wells Fargo and McIlroy in the field, there's a good chance the two could swap again. And it's a safe bet this could continue for the foreseeable future ... making the No. 1 ranking a mere footnote until someone grabs a stranglehold and legitimizes the top spot.

We have a David Duval sighting — The former No. 1 finished at 3-under for the week and wasn't a factor on the weekend, but his made cut at the Zurich was still a big deal. For only the third time in the past two years, Duval made consecutive cuts on the PGA Tour. He'd missed seven straight cuts to start this year. It doesn't mean much to the casual golf fan, but when you're struggling like Duval is at the moment, just making it to Sunday is a big deal. Baby steps, folks.

Rickie Fowler isn't even the best player in his own house at the moment — Remember when we all thought Rickie Fowler was the next big thing on the PGA Tour? It just so happens that we were looking at the wrong guy in his house. That's because Fowler's bunkmate, Cameron Tringale, is outplaying his friend. With a T7 at the Zurich, Tringale now has three top-8 finishes in his last three starts, and four on the season -- which happens to be tops on tour. At this rate, nobody should be surprised if Tringale becomes a PGA Tour winner before Fowler.

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