Why’s it so awesome to have James Hahn as one of our staffers? Let’s count the ways:
- The dude goes crazy low: He’s already shot two 62s and a 63 in his first five events alone. He’s fifth on Tour in total birdies, fourth in par-5 performance and third in total eagles.
- He delivers week in and week out. Hahn has two top-5 finishes (Humana Challenge and AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am) and has made the cut in each of his starts this year. That’s why he’s 10th on the money list.
- No one in golf has more fun than him. Whether he’s firing off hilarious tweets or doing the Gangnam Style in front of fans at the Waste Management Phoenix Open, Hahn is clearly having the time of his life on the big Tour. He plays with an attitude that’s infectious.
After his T3 finish last week, we all expect James to keep it going at Riviera.
Last week was not my best week for picks. I blame the Bubble Guppies. My kids are on a Bubble Guppy bender and those little cartoon half kid/half mermaid freaks really creep me out. So I was distracted and officially jinxed Luke List again so I won’t be picking him again this year. Sorry, Luke. My bad, brother.
My picks are as follows and I quote (sing that one like the song “The Grinch”):
-James Hahn. How can I not pick James Hahn? Aside from turning into an overnight sensation with his Gangnam Style dance (the only way PSY’s original song remains interesting is when James does a dance to it, by the way. Sorry, Pistacchio, but it’s true.)
-Phil Mickelson. He’s got a bunch of new weaponry in his bag. He loves Riviera. He almost won there last year. And he was nice to Chad this week for the twitter chat. Gotta have Phil in the mix.
-Ready for this pick? I’m going Ryo Ishikawa. Why? Because the dude is a shotmaker and this is a shotmaker’s course. They don’t call it Arnett’s Alley for nothing. What? Oh, sorry, you’re right. They call it Hogan’s Alley. Ishikawa will be shaping his ball through the eucalyptus trees and putting those greens like a champ. Bank it.
So as the old saying goes, “Jimmy Hahn, Philly Mick, and Ryo and the rest are only there for show.” That’s a really lousy attempt at humor but them’s my picks, folks.
Pick 1 – Gary Woodland – Solid showing in PHX and after a week off, he should be ready to roll. He loves Riviera and should have an advantage on the field with his bomb prowess!
Pick 2 – Chris Kirk – Week after week he just plays solid. Hits a ton of greens which is crucial at Riviera and puts great on Poa, evidenced by his showing at Pebble.
Pick 3 – James Hahn – Apparently he doesn’t know he’s a rookie, because he plays like a veteran on Sundays and is un-phased by big crowds which are sure to be present at Riviera.
Jason Finley (Marketing Director)
Jason’s Picks: Jim Furyk, Mickelson, Hahn
My first pick for the week is Jim Furyk. He is great for Riviera and he is primed for a good finish on one of the best courses on Tour. His putting and driving performance will drive his strong performance this week.
My second pick for this week is Phil Mickelson. After a slightly less impressive week at Pebble, I expect him to get back up on his feet again (literally) and back up last year’s high with a very entertaining finish this week. Word is a couple new fairway woods will be in play this week as well which will definitely help around Riviera.
My final pick for this week is riding one of the hottest players on Tour in James Hahn. He has shown tremendous game and an ability to dance as well, which will both fit in so close to Hollywood.
Jeff Newton (Tour Beat Writer)
Jeff’s Picks: Hahn, Furyk, Fredrik Jacobson
Pick #1 - Hahn
How does he make it look so easy every week? Hahn’s got the formula down: make birdies, shoot up the leaderboard and have a great time doing it. I’d smile all the time too if I could play like he’s playing.
Pick #2 - Furyk
Furyk’s game sets up well for one of the classic courses on Tour. He’ll be playing from the fairway all week and won’t get into any trouble on a Riviera track that demands great shotmaking. Consistency always wins out at this event, and that’s perfect for Furyk’s game.
Pick #3 - Jacobson
Freddy J got his season going last week and much like Furyk his accuracy off the tee will be a huge asset at Riviera. His lights out putting doesn’t hurt, either. Keep your eye on Freddy and his painter’s cap this weekend.
The Final Word
He’s not as big as Gangnam Style (yet) but Hahn has one of the best stories going on Tour right now. We know he’ll #bringit like he always does.
For more on all of our staffers, please visit our Staff Pros page.