Opening Day at the PGA Championship essentially wound up a draw.
Good shots were rewarded, bad ones predictably punished and the Ocean Course — reliably backed up by stiff breezes off the Atlantic — came out of it looking like anything but a pushover. Canadian Corey Conners posted a 5-under 67, but it came on a day when the field averaged 75 and a quartet of pre-tournament picks landed right on that number or worse: Rory McIlroy and Justin Thomas (75), Dustin Johnson (76) and Daniel Berger (78).
For all that, no one’s feelings were badly bruised … except maybe Bryson DeChambeau’s. He recovered from four straight bogeys to finish at even-par 72, but appeared still out of sorts afterward. Recounting his round in a press conference. DeChambeau mixed up some holes, acknowledged he struggled with the heat and some bad breaks and found it nerve-wracking trying to constantly factor in the wind speed and direction, even on short putts.
The woe-is-me litany continued until a reporter, citing DeChambeau’s practice and preparation fetish, seemed genuinely concerned about his health, asking, “Are you close to a point of exhaustion?”