If Not Torrey Pines, Look for Dustin Johnson’s Possible Return at Pebble Beach
Januaray 14, 2014
The speculation regarding Dustin Johnson’s return began back in November when the Golf Channel reported that Johnson was eyeing a potential return to the tour at the 2015 Farmers Insurance Open.
Flash forward, and the Farmers Insurance Open, slated for Feb. 5-8, is now just three weeks away. And still it’s unknown whether or not DJ will tee it up at Torrey Pines.
But his return looks to be more and more imminent.
Just a day ago, The Golf Channel’s Rex Hoggard reported that Johnson’s coach, Butch Harmon, hinted that Johnson would indeed return at Torrey Pines. “He seems to have his head on straight and is in great shape,” Harmon said. “I think he’s going to start at Torrey Pines.”
If Johnson doesn’t start at Torrey Pines, look for him to possibly make his start at the ensuing tour stop, the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, which is set for February 9-15 at Pebble Beach Golf Links, Spyglass Hill and the Shore Course at Monterey Peninsula Country Club.
On Wednesday, Steve John, CEO of the Monterey Peninsula Foundation, the group that runs the AT&T Pro-Am, said that Johnson, while not committed, is planning to play at Pebble Beach.
A return to Pebble Beach could be just the thing to get Johnson back in the groove. In 2009 and 2010, he won the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, becoming the first repeat champion since Mark O’Meara won two in a row in 1989 and 199
The long-hitting South Carolina native hasn’t played a Tour event since last year’s Canadian Open after announcing he was taking a leave of absence from the game last summer. At the time, golf media outlets reported that the leave of absence revolved around a six-month suspension from the PGA Tour due to Johnson’s third failed drug test.
Along with that six-month time frame ending, Johnson’s return has also hinged around the birth of he and fiancee Paulina Gretzky’s first child. Johnson’s manager, David Winkle, told GolfChannel.com on Tuesday that Johnson’s return would be dictated by the birth of the child, who is due this month. “His first priority is to make sure that (fiancé Paulina Gretzky) and the baby are good,” Winkle told the Golf Channel via text message. “He will then return to competition as soon as possible.”