The Masters is still seven more weeks away.
Riviera's West Coast swing ends at Riviera. The Genesis Invitational brings together a strong field that attracted all of the top 10 world ranking players. This is the first time that all 10 of the top PGA Tour players have been invited to a regular PGA Tour event in 15 years.
Even Tiger Woods is there, even though he is at Riviera as the tournament's host after sustaining injuries to his right leg in a Los Angeles car accident nearly a year ago.
Rory McIlroy checks in at No. 5. "All 10 top ten are present this week. That speaks volumes about how we think of the event." This is one event you won't want to miss.
Riviera has never looked so good, thanks to the recent dry spell in California as well as the heat of Super Bowl weekend. They are already fast and firm, but they still have enough subtlety to be difficult in wet conditions.
McIlroy will make his U.S. debut, having previously played twice during the European Tour's swing through United Arab Emirates.
Collin Morikawa is No.1 despite having so many top players on the field. Patrick Cantlay and Collin Morikawa are at No. Jon Rahm is mathematically unlikely to be replaced by any of the three finalists for the top spot in the world rankings.
It's enough to distract attention from the endless rumblings about a Saudi-financed "Super Golf League", which has yet to announce a signing of a player. Bryson deChambeau and Phil Mickelson are the most prominent players at Riviera.
McIlroy described it as "Not so Super League", suggesting that it would more closely resemble a pre-Champions Tour rather than a league with the best players.
McIlroy, Rahm, Justin Thomas, Jordan Spieth and Brooks Koepka are just a few of the people who have indicated that they aren’t interested.
Rahm stated that he opposed the idea nearly two years ago. He took Wednesday off to say again that any legacy he leaves in golf would be through the PGA Tour. Money is not his only motivation.
Rahm stated, "They throw numbers at them and that's supposed impress people."
The world ranking gives the most relevant numbers for Riviera. Many of those numbers are due to Riviera and a tournament that Woods hosts. The prize money for the tournament is $12 million. This is the same amount as last year's PGA Championship.
Cantlay lost to Scottie Scheffler in a playoff last week at the Phoenix Open. Cantlay has been driving up to Riviera since he was a child from Long Beach.
Two weeks ago, he said that Cypress Point or Pebble Beach would be the course that he wanted to play with his friends. He thought Riviera was the best course for tournament golf.
Cantlay stated, "I believe it defends par without being tricked up more than any other golf course I have ever been to." They rarely grow any rough. The rough is almost nonexistent, there is no water and you can only hit it out of bounds at the 12th hole. Yet, 13, 14, 15, 16, and under win almost every time."
This is with a par-5 hole that Cantlay can reach using a 3-wood or a 7-iron.
After finishing at 12-under par, Max Homa won the playoff.
Cantlay stated, "I believe it's an incredible test of golf."
However, just because you have all the top 10 players does not guarantee that one will be there at end. Phoenix saw five of the world's top-10 players finish among the top 10 at TPC Scottsdale.
Scheffler (now No. Scheffler (now No. He was 15 when he won the Phoenix tournament. This was McIlroy's No. 1 player on the PGA Tour. 14) at the CJ Cup in Las Vegas. In the six tournaments that began the year, two players who are not among the top 100 have won.
Morikawa is not the first to try for No. 1. He looked poised to reach the top of the Hero World Challenge in Bahamas in December, but he lost a five-shot lead during the final round.
Although he hasn't competed in any of the three events this season -- two in Middle East -- some of that was due to a long break in the offseason after overcoming the coronavirus. He did spend time in LA with his coach from his hometown and liked the direction of his game.
He said, "So the confidence has returned, glad to have been back in LA and just as excited to see everyone and get ready to play some fantastic golf,"