It was a long strange trip for Dustin Johnson to reach his first Major victory. Here’s a look at some of the highlights and low lights leading up to his triumph on Sunday.
January 13, 2008 – Johnson finished tied for 10th at the Sony Open in Hawaii at the start of his first full season on the PGA Tour.
June 15, 2008 – Johnson plays his first Major, finishing tied for 48th at the US Open.
August 16, 2009 – Johnson finished tied for 10th at the PGA Championship, his first top 10 placement at a Major.
June 20, 2010 – Johnson leads the US Open by three strokes headed to Sunday and suffers a massive meltdown, triple-bogeying No. 2 and doubling No. 3. He shoots an 82 and winds up tied for eighth.
August 15, 2010 – Johnson is tied for second, three strokes behind Nick Watney headed to the final round of the PGA Championship. The field comes back to his 10-under, but he isn’t there to take advantage. After birdying 16 and 17 to take a one-shot led, he bogeyed 18, then was penalised two strokes for grounding his club (sound familiar?) in a bunker and was assessed a two-stroke penalty, dropping him to a tie for ninth.
July 17, 2011 – Johnson is tied for second, one stroke behind Darren Clarke entering the final round of The Open Championship. He was two strokes off the lead through 13 holes, then tried to reach the green with a 2 iron on the par-5 No. 14 and fired it out of bounds, taking a double-bogey 7 and finishing tied for second, three strokes behind Clarke.
July 31, 2014 – Just four days after missing the cut at the RBC Heritage, Johnson announced he was taking the rest of the season off to pursue help for “personal challenges.” No official word on what these challenges are is ever given, but speculation runs from cocaine abuse to affairs with other players’ wives. In leaving the Tour for the rest of the season, he forgoes his spot on the US Ryder Cup team.
January 19, 2015 – Tatum Gretzky Johnson, Dustin’s son with Paulina Gretzky, is born.
February 8, 2015 – Johnson plays professionally for the first time in seven months, missing the cut at the Farmers Insurance Open.
March 8, 2015 – A month after making his 2015 debut, Johnson wins the WGC-Cadillac Championship with a 9-under 279.
June 21, 2015 – In a wild final round at the US Open, Johnson has a 12-foot eagle putt to win his first Major. He misses it by three feet, then misses the chip-in putt that would have forced a Monday playoff, handing the title to Jordan Spieth.
June 19, 2016 – Despite a potential 1-stroke penalty hanging over his head, Johnson shoots a final-round 69 to win the US Open by three strokes.