2020 Masters Choose Your Own Adventure, Rory McIlroy vs. Brooks Koepka: Unshakable Attitude
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images. Pictured: Brooks Koepka, Rory McIlroy
The guy who is capable of hitting it better than anyone in the world.
Over the past three years, the entire golf world has tried to figure out Koepka. Writers, magazine profilers, television reporters and, yes, an entire golf fanbase which struggles to wrap its collective mind around a guy who appears utterly disinterested by “regular” tournaments, but owns the ability to ramp up his performance during the four most important weeks of the year.
It doesn’t make sense. Hell, he doesn’t make sense, which is why we’re so enamored with trying to figure him out.
There are no football players who cruise through the regular season, then start littering the endzone with touchdowns in the playoffs; there are no baseball players who pop-fly their way through summer, then start hitting 450-foot bombs in the postseason.
And yet, here’s Koepka — a player who has somehow unearthed the secret to what Tiger has always called “trying to peak four times per year.”
That inner fortitude, that uncanny talent to step up his game when it means the most is why he’s claimed four major titles already.
Sorry, make that five.
The last player to make a triple-bogey in the final round of a major and still win that day was Keegan Bradley at the 2011 PGA Championship, but Koepka matched that dubious feat on this day — and really, that triple was a mere footnote by Sunday evening.
Walking with him every step of the way, you witnessed a virtuoso performance on the back-nine, as he shrugged off those big numbers the same way he seems to shrug off everything that would bother other players more than him.
When it was finally over, when he’d clinched his fifth major, not-so-discreetly chugging a Michelob Ultra when the final contender succumbed and he’d clinched the victory, you stuck around to hear him speak, newly adorned in his green jacket.
“Oh man, I totally forgot about that,” he says with a laugh when asked about the triple-bogey. “I guess I was just focused on what I was doing.”
That right there, you decide, that unshakeable attitude, should help us figure out the newest Masters champion more than anything else.