After firing a three-under 67 to put him in a tie for second at the midway mark of The McGladrey Classic, Webb Simpson confirmed he’ll play next week’s season-ending event, the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals Classic. Simpson’s announcement followed shortly after world No. 1 Luke Donal committed to the Disney to take on Webb for the PGA Tour Money Title. Oh yeah, it’s on! — both guys are ready to throw down.
When Simpson entered the McGladrey last week with the hopes of earning just over $68,000 to dethrone Donald, who has the opportunity to become the first player to win the Money Title on both the PGA Tour and European Tour, he already knew he would commit to the Disney — though he didn’t want to show his hand to Luke yet.
“I thought Luke was going to definitely play,” said Simpson in his post-round presser. “I think he’s kind of thinking the same thing I’m thinking, that if one of us was going to play, the other one really needed to. It’s going to be fun. I’m sure ‑‑ he’s one of those competitive guys on the Tour, and so I’m sure he’s going to come guns loaded and he’s going to play great like he has all year.”
Exactly. I don’t understand why there was ever a doubt that Luke would just practically let Webb dethrone him on the Money List. I know Luke’s wife Diane is pregnant and they’re expecting their second child in a few weeks, but it shouldn’t conflict with the Disney. Worst case scenario: Diane goes into labor early, Luke drops out or maybe he stays depending on the situation.
I just figured he wouldn’t give up the unique chance to become the first player to win both money titles. “Firsts” are cool because you’re making history and who doesn’t want to make history? Which is pretty much what Luke tweeted Friday afternoon.
Luke also added “#bringiton.” Well, Webb is ready to rumble.
“(Luke’s putt on 18 at the Tour Championship) just kind of turned around our schedules a little bit. But you know, it is fun. It’ll be nice to go down there. It’s an interesting dynamic. We’re not used to this. I’m sure there will be a lot of head‑to‑head talks, and I’m sure they’ll think about pairing us together first two rounds.
“So a lot is going to happen next week, and a lot can happen this weekend. Like I said, the last couple days in here, I’m just going to try and win the golf tournament. If I can play well this weekend, even if I don’t win, a great chunk will be added to the Money List.”
Webb vs. Luke isn’t exactly Tiger vs. Phil, but hey, it adds another element of excitement to the event. I’m a huge geek and more interested in the guys who are in do-or-die mode and on the money list bubble.
Then there’s the argument that Luke and Webb are being selfish and taking away spots from players who are playing for their jobs. Well, yes, two guys will be bumped out and that sucks, but that’s the way it goes. Those unlucky individuals probably could have capitalized on plenty of opportunities throughout the season. Not to sound insensitive because I sympathize and think it’s somewhat annoying this totally intense duel for the Money List title was started (though I’ve warmed up to it), but guys, play better!
Anyway, I’ll bet money on the Tour putting Webb and Luke in the same group for the first two rounds. Maybe (and hopefully) they’ll be paired on Sunday, too.
(AP Photo/Stephen Morton)