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WATCH: How Justin Thomas Won The PGA Championship

Justin Thomas became a major champion thanks to a stellar back-nine on Sunday. (Photo Credit: Rob Schumacher, USA Today Sports)

No one knew exactly when this PGA Championship turned into the U.S. Open we didn’t get – a brawl between a plethora of the game’s up-and-coming superstars on a course where pars were great and birdies were extraordinary – but you couldn’t have scripted a better ending to the major championship season.

PGA Championship Final Round
Justin Thomas -8
Patrick Reed -6
Louis Oosthuizen -6
Francesco Molinari -6
Rickie Fowler -5
Hideki Matsuyama -5
Graham DeLaet  -4
Kevin Kisner -4
Jason Day -1
Matt Kuchar


Twenty-four-year-old Justin Thomas, the man who shot 63 in the U.S. Open at Erin Hills, fired a six-birdie, three-bogey 68 to finish 8 under, good enough for a two-shot victory, a finale that was far more exciting than the mere recitation of those facts.

Thomas began the final day two back of Kevin Kisner and fell three behind early after two quick bogeys bracketed one birdie at the second. But birdies at Nos. 7 and 9 pulled Thomas within a shot.

After that, things got good. On the 592-yard, par-5 10th, Thomas flew a 3-wood 301 yards, past the hole and into the back rough. Let that sink in. A 150-pound man didn’t just hit a 3-wood more than 300 yards, he flew it 301. But for the rough behind the green, it might have gone 350.

From there he hit a mediocre chip to 8 feet and hit a putt that looked for a moment like it would hang on the lip. After walking away the way a cool kid throws a tantrum, Thomas moved toward the ball just as it tumbled into the hole for birdie. He shrugged, gave a sheepish grin, and walked away tied for the lead.

A couple of minutes later, he held the lead outright as Kisner, Hideki Matsuyama, Francesco Molinari and Chris Stroud fell away.

Two other shots got it done and proved that Thomas is better at golf than almost everyone. After tugging his tee shot at the par-3 13th, Thomas hit a perfect bump-and-run chip from 43 feet that rolled into the hole like a tap-in putt.

Then at the par-3 17th, with 226 yards to the flag, Thomas hit a 7-iron – again, let that sink in for a second – just 15 feet underneath the hole. He curled the birdie putt in just as Kisner made another bogey.

The lead was three with one hole to play, so Thomas’ bogey at 18 proved meaningless.

Thomas’ father, Mike, a PGA professional, was waiting behind the green with Rickie Fowler and Jordan Spieth to give the game’s newest major champion a hug. Well deserved. All of it.    


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