The final leaderboard for the 2016 Northern Trust Open at Riviera Country Club in Pacific Palisades, California is in. Bubba Watson made two birdies in the last three holes to win by one stroke over runners-up Adam Scott and Jason Kokrak. Below is the truncated top-10 leaderboard:
(1) Bubba Watson (-15)
(T2) Adam Scott (-14)
(T2) Jason Kokrak (-14)
(4) Dustin Johnson (-13)
(T5) Marc Leishman (-12)
(T5) K.J. Choi (-12)
(7) Chez Reavie (-11)
(T8) Matt Kuchar (-10)
(T8) Sung Kang (-10)
(10) Ryan Moore (-9)
Here are my thoughts and a few statistics on the champion and some notable golfers near the top of the leaderboard:
Winner: Bubba Watson (-15) – This is Watson’s second win at the Northern Trust, the first being in 2014. This is also his ninth PGA Tour win, his last being at the 2015 Travelers Championship (he also won the World Challenge, an unofficial Tour event, in December). He finished T70 last week at the Pebble Beach Pro-Am. His best finish of 2016, aside from this week, was a T10 at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions. With this title under his belt, he has great momentum going into the Masters which is less than 50 days away. Will he notch his 10th Tour win there, or somewhere else? Time will tell.
Today: 5 birdies and 2 bogeys for a 3-under 68. Although he missed a 12-footer on the last, the two key birdies he made on holes 16 and 17 were what sealed the deal. Scores over four rounds: 66, 68, 67, 68 (269).
Adam Scott (-16) – This is Scott’s best finish since the CIMB Classic last October — between now and then he hasn’t done much in terms of high finishes. He most recently played the Northern Trust in 2013 and 2012, where he finished T10 and T17 respectively. He won the event in 2005 in a playoff when it was known as the Nissan Open (although it was shortened to 36 holes due to brutal weather). He has 11 Tour wins under his belt, and his most recent one remains the 2014 Crowne Plaza Invitational.
Today: 1 eagle, 6 birdies, 2 bogeys and a double for a 4-under 67. Scores over four rounds: 68, 68, 67, 67 (270). After making an eagle and three birdies in his first 6 holes, he was derailed by a double bogey on the par-4 8th. He mixed a few birdies and bogeys on the back nine, including birdies on the 17th and 18th, but it wasn’t enough to catch Watson.
Dustin Johnson (-13) – This is Johnson’s first top-10 finish since the Hyundai in January in which he finished T10. He also finished T18 at the Farmers Insurance and T41 at Pebble Beach this year. He missed the cut at the Northern Trust in 2013 but finished runner-up at the tournament in both 2014 and 2015. Johnson has 9 PGA Tour wins under his belt, his last being at the 2015 WGC-Cadillac Championship at Trump National Doral. It will be really interesting to see how he’ll perform through the Florida swing and into the first major of the year.
Today: 5 birdies and 3 bogeys for a 2-under 69. Scores over four rounds: 68, 66, 68, 69 (271).