Golf’s most viral moments of 2022 | Rogers Report
Mike Mulholland, Kent Horner, Sam Greenwood
2022. The year golf changed forever. We have no choice but to thank Greg Norman and Phil Mickelson, at least from a content perspective, for serving up some of the most wild moments in golf on a silver platter in 2022. From open letters to Jay Monahan, to on-the-record versus off-the-record conversations and Instagram memes, these two really carried their weight in terms of viral moments this year. Other MVPs include the Woods family, Rory McIlroy, a Masters Sunday four-putt and Jordan Spieth taking his talents to the very edge of a cliff.
Without further ado, it is my greatest honor to present to you the most viral moments of the year.
Jordan Spieth made parents everywhere rethink their belief that golf is safer than football on Saturday of the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am when he flirted with the edge of a cliff on the 8th hole. Content warning: Extreme heights.
Colt Knost said it best. “This is downright terrifying right now.”
Fast-forward to the biggest party in golf. Wild things always happen on No. 17 at the Waste Management Phoenix Open, but Harry Higgs and Joel Dahmen took things to a new level.
I’d seen this sort of behavior at junior varsity high school matches before, but never on the professional level. My senses tell me this was a one-time thing and it’ll never happen again. I’m honored to have been alive for this moment in history.
The Alan Shipnuck-Phil Mickelson timeline could take over this entire article, but I’ll just stick to the highlights. On February 22, Phil announced that he’d be taking a break from the game.
Two days later, Greg Norman’s letter to Jay Monahan provided me with a new favorite term to overuse: surely you jest.
Luckily for all of us, the public display of petty behavior between grown men in golf was just beginning. These guys must’ve taken notes from the mean girls in my seventh-grade class.
Tiger doesn’t get into the mix on social media often, but this Tweet from early March is still giving me life.
Phil Mickelson Tweeted that he won the PIP on December 29, 2021. Tiger Woods waited 63 (!) days to chirp Lefty once the PIP rankings were released. An iconic mic drop if I’ve ever seen one.
From start to finish, the Woods family’s Hall of Fame induction presence was perfect.
Showing up to the event ready to go? Absolutely not. Tiger and Charlie presented their outfits before the outfit, which of course included basketball shorts and backwards hats.
The real star of the evening was Sam Woods, whose Hall of Fame gave us a glimpse into the life of Tiger Woods. Not Tiger Woods the 15-time major champion, golfer, but as a father and his role in the Woods family.
As far as 2022 viral golf moments go, her speech was my personal favorite.
Over at TPC Sawgrass, a special effect on the broadcast took Golf Twitter by storm. I’ll never forget the hold that Gold Man had on Golf Twitter for 72 hours.
There were a lot of big moments throughout Masters week, but the most memorable moments came on Sunday afternoon. Not only did Rory McIlroy fire a 64 on Sunday, he closed out his round in perfect fashion.
And then his playing partner, Collin Morikawa, did the exact same thing.
The greatest moment of the 2022 Masters came when Scottie Scheffler four-putted to win. Had he not won the event, I would not consider this a great moment. I’d bury the memory somewhere deep in my memory. But Scheffler proved that someones the best players in the world are just like us, even when they’re about to win a green jacket.
Shout out to Scheffler for handling it like an absolute champ. When we did a cover shoot with him a few weeks later, Scheffler assured us that he’d been able to laugh at the four-putt from the moment the final one hit the bottom of the cup.
Lydia Ko left Jerry Foltz speechless during her post-round interview at the Palos Verdes Championship.
I already had the utmost respect for Ko, but this brought it to a new level.
While most pros who headed to LIV tried to convince the world they hadn’t thought much about it while competing on the PGA Tour, Sergio Garcia took an entirely different approach. He made it known that he was ready to dip at the Wells Fargo Championship.
And on Saturday at the Wells Fargo Championship, James Hahn got after a fan for eating his chips too loud. Yes, you read that correctly.
On Friday at the PGA Championship, Tiger Woods accidentally helped create the best Michelob-Ultra ad known to man.
Those darn kids and their phones! If I were a beer-drinking gal I’d be Michelob Ultra’s No. 1 customer after seeing this.
In June, Phil Mickelson returned to social media and announced that his time away from the game had concluded.
There’s nothing like a screenshot of an announcement to beat the character limit on Twitter. Unfortunately, I’m used to reading things in 280 characters or less, so this was a lot for me to get through.
When Rory McIlroy earned his 21st PGA Tour victory at the RBC Canadian Open, he took a moment to throw some shade at Greg Norman.
Part of me is nervous to share this for fear of Reed or Gooch retaliation, and I know that Gooch cleared the air on what he really meant here. But that doesn’t make this comment any less wild.
Comparing a LIV Team win to a Ryder Cup win is a level of delusion I aspire to have when it comes to my own golf game one day. I’m sure I’d have a much better time on the course.
I think the most emotional moment of the year was when Tiger walked over the Swilcan Bridge and down the 18th fairway at St. Andrews on Friday.
We don’t see Tiger tears very often. And I’m willing to admit that I teared up watching it myself.
In August, Tiger was back in business mode when he flew into Delaware ahead of the PGA Tour players’ meeting.
What exactly went on in that meeting remains one of the sport’s greatest mysteries. But I’m glad we got to see him hop off the plane and drive off with Rickie Fowler.
Back to the best subplot of viral moments of the year: pros being petty. After the Tour raised the purse size for 12 events heading into 2023, Greg Norman shared this meme on Instagram.
Extra points for him using the wrong form of “too.” But seriously, can you imagine the commissioner of any other sports league utilizing their social media in this way? It’s been four months and I still can’t wrap my head around it.
Over at the Tour Championship, Rory McIlroy gave a lesson in class when he approached the Scheffler family and apologized for beating Scottie. And the Schefflers could not have handled it more gracefully.
We didn’t see Tiger at the U.S. Open in Brookline, but we got to see him at the other U.S. Open as he cheered on Serena Williams.
Watching Tiger Woods watch the U.S. Open was quite a treat.
On to September. The start of the school year, a time for fresh starts. Well, for everyone other than LIV and PGA Tour golfers. Players from each tour met for the first time at the BMW PGA Championship, and although said it was nothing serious, this looked like a heated moment between Ian Poulter and Billy Horschel.
Next up: the infamous rope incident of 2022. We’ll commemorate this anniversary every year with a moment of silence on September 18. Our children and our children’s children will read about it in their history textbooks.
Pro-LIV or not, this was one of the most memorable moments of the year. Thank you to YouTube for making this possible.
Jordan Spieth’s son, Sammy, captured all of our hearts during this sweet moment at the Presidents Cup.
In the spirit of complete transparency, Phil Mickelson’s interview saga has been the most difficult for me to keep up with this year. I can tell you every last detail about Dustin Johnson and Paulina Gretzky’s wedding, but the Phil stuff has not been my strong suit. Luckily my colleague (and pal), Dylan Dethier, has been able to keep up with all of the action.
We love a game of “he said, she said.”
Tiger gave this lucky amateur a putting lesson at the Hero World Challenge. Most people wouldn’t consider November a hot month for golf, but this moment definitely made its way into the rankings for one of the best of the year.
The PNC Championship flash zone brought two of my favorite videos of the year. First, we have Charlie Woods saying he was “shocked” that his dad played well on Saturday at the PNC, Tiger laughing at his reply and confirming that he “used to be good.”
And then Justin Thomas joined the media for a minute and asked Charlie Woods a hard-hitting question about his Snoopy hat.
JT, you’ve got a future in reporting if this whole golf thing doesn’t work out.
Not necessarily viral, but my favorite moments of 2022
I present to you, without comment, a handful of miscellaneous moments from the year that I won’t be forgetting any time soon.