Tournament Of Champions: Jordan Spieth In Prime Position For Season-Opening Win

By Brandon Raper
Brett Davis- USA TODAY Sports

You were looking for excitement this weekend at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions, right? Looks like you’ve come to the right place. After Sunday’s third round, Jordan Spieth, Dustin Johnson and Webb Simpson share the clubhouse lead at -14, and it will be a shootout on Monday to determine the first PGA Tour winner of 2014.

While anything can happen at Kapalua – see Brian Gay‘s 8-under round of 65 – I think the favorite this weekend has to be Spieth. In his second season on Tour, the 20-year-old Spieth would become the youngest winner of the Tournament of Champions in the event’s history. Who holds the record for now? The notably absent Tiger Woods. Who knows, perhaps losing that record might even bring Woods to Hawaii to start next season.

While it’s anything but a lock that Spieth will win, here’s what gives him the edge. After jumping out on Friday with a huge day of 7-under 66, Spieth has remained steady as can be, carding only two bogeys so far this week. He doesn’t need to rack up extra birdies to make up for lost strokes, and if he keeps that up, he’ll be right there through the end of play.

While Dustin Johnson has the winning experience and Webb Simpson has been a putting machine, there’s just something about the way Spieth takes care of business that lets me believe he’ll get it done today. The trade winds off the coast will make sure that nobody has an easy time with it, but this win would take Spieth’s young career to a whole new level. He’s not one to back down from a challenge, and he’ll find a way to get it done.

Brandon Raper is a golf writer for “Like” him on Facebook, follow him on Twitter @Brandon__Raper, and join him on Google+.

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