Speaking to the press for the first time since the US Open at the site of this week’s AT&T National, Dustin Johnson appears to have recovered from his almost-too-painful-to-watch collapse after holding the 54-hole lead. Which doesn’t surprise me. Somehow, DJ Styles doesn’t strike me as the type to let such memories stick.
When asked if he would have done anything differently — like not chipping left-handed on the second hole or taking more time in between shots — he replied he would have hoped to hit a better approach shot on the second because he left himself with a difficult chip. DJ also attributes the breakdown on Sunday to “just a bad day” and not US Open nerves, which I mostly believe is true. If you add a poor hitting day to the stress of leading at a major championship to the rigorous US Open set-up, then that is usually a formula for disaster, or an 82.
And guess who was among his fellow players and friends that called him with their condolences? Greg Norman, the most famed choker of them all! “Obviously, he’s been in my situation a few times,” said DJ, who was appreciative of Norman’s comforting words.
“My bounce-back is usually very good. It never usually rattles or bothers me after I have a bad hole,” he added. That probably goes for a bad tournament, too. For some other players, I gather it might take more time to get past such a nightmarish day, but I like the odds on DJ dusting it off already. Anyone hedging bets to how he’ll perform at the AT&T National at Aronimink Golf Club?