Golf

Jack Nicklaus Believes Bryson DeChambeau Will Overpower The Masters: ‘He Could Drive the 1st Green’

Bryson DeChambeau is taking the golf world by storm with his mammoth drives, bulging biceps, and protein shakes. The powerful righty just set the record for the most prolific season of driving the golf ball in PGA Tour history, and he’s only getting longer.

A week ahead of the 2020 Masters tournament, golf legend Jack Nicklaus believes DeChambeau is going to put on a show. Nicklaus thinks DeChambeau can accomplish something never done before at Augusta National Golf Club — drive the green of the 1st hole. Yeah, the 455-yard par-4. And he’s dead serious.

Bryson DeChambeau is revolutionizing golf

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Bryson DeChambeau isn’t your typical golfer. From his stiff putting style to his thick-gripped irons that all measure the same length, Dechambeau approaches the sport differently than anyone else on the PGA Tour.

The ‘Mad Scientist’ has transformed his game over the past calendar year, and most of the focus was on hitting the ball harder and farther than anyone who’s ever played the game. And that’s exactly what he’s done.

DeChambeau averaged 322.1 yards per drive during the 2020 season, which is the highest mark in PGA Tour history. He routinely pounds the ball over 400 yards and has chips into greens when other players are hitting full approach shots.

The added distance isn’t just for bragging rights, either. It’s aiding him to the best stretch of golf of his entire career. Dechambeau recorded a win and nine top-10 finished during the 2020 season. More recently, he won his first major championship at the 2020 U.S. Open, breezing past the field in the process.

DeChambeau will try to make it back-to-back major wins next weekend at The Masters.

Jack Nicklaus believes DeChambeau can drive the 1st green at Augusta

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When DeChambeau tees it up at Augusta National Golf Club next Thursday, he’ll be staring at a 455-yard, uphill par-4 to start his day. Most players would be happy to get far enough down to pull a wedge out of the bag for the approach shot. Jack Nicklaus thinks he only needs a putter.

“He could drive the 1st green,” Nicklaus told GOLF.com. “If it’s firm, he could drive the 1st green. Under the right conditions… I haven’t seen him in person hit a golf ball except on television at the U.S. Open, and of course at the Memorial tournament. He hit in some places I couldn’t believe. He was 27 yards from the 1st green at the Memorial tournament. I mean — come on. That hole is 470, something like that. If he could do that, he can drive the 1st green.”

With The Masters being played in November for the first time, the golf course could play faster and firmer than it normally would in April. You can bet DeChambeau will try to take advantage as much as he can with the big stick.

Does that mean putting one on the 1st green? We’ll find out.

Nicklaus is all aboard the Bryson train

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DeChambeau has attracted some critics for the way he’s approached the game of golf in the last year. Nicklaus, though, is not one of them.

“What [DeChambeau] has done is amazing,” Nicklaus said. “He’s figured out that distance is far more important than accuracy. Even at a U.S. Open. And he took a chance by doing what he did to build himself to a level to be able to do that. I give the guy great kudos. You develop skills that give you an advantage and that’s what he’s figured out. And a lot of people will follow suit.”

With the wide fairways and short rough at Augusta National, it’s possible DeChambeau blows the field away again next weekend. Especially if he’s driving the green on 455-yard holes, good luck beating this guy at The Masters.