AUGUSTA, Ga. – The legend that was the late Arnold Palmer was honored in an emotional opening tee shot ceremony on Thursday at the Masters.
His presence is still being called on Saturday at Augusta National.
Jordan Spieth faced a 230-yard second shot from pine straw at the par-5 13th and was looking for some help on a difficult and incredibly important shot.
So who did he call on? Well, caddie Michael Greller – as you would expect – but he invoked another name when chatting with his looper.
When assessing the situation, Spieth turned to Greller and asked, “What would Arnie do, Mike?”
Greller responded by telling Spieth, ‘He’d hit it right below (the hole), 20 feet.”
And you know what, Spieth basically did just that! He launched an incredible 4-iron from the pine straw, knocking it some 29 feet underneath the hole.
The conversation and the shot:
*Way more chills*
Such an incredible exchange and moment. Spieth would birdie the hole to move two back at 4 under and into a tie for second.
After the round, Spieth went into great detail on the “What would Arnie do?” exchange, clarifying that he said it in order to convince Greller out of calling for him to lay up.
Here’s Spieth’s full explanation, as all of it is worth your time:
He was very much pressing for a layup there, and laying up was the smart shot. I had 228 to the hole. I couldn’t see the green, given where the tree was located. I’m right‑handed. I could see the right edge on the tower, but my ball – the actual shot wasn’t blocked. It was just about committing to what you can see and what you actually know is there.
And so he liked the layup. I’ve made birdie at that pin, I think, the last two years by laying up down the left side and hitting a wedge in there, and I feel like I’ve done a lot of course knowledge to know where to lay up and how to hit that pitch in there. So it actually, even though it’s a hard shot to that pin, it’s the most difficult pin on the hole.
I had confidence in the layup situation, but I had a great number. I had a 4‑iron number. It was going to cover if I struck it solid, and I just had to turn it off the tower. And if I overturned it, it would just be in that swale and I figured I would get it out of the swale to the same proximity that I would hit the wedge shot.
So all that went through my head. And I thought, in order to win this golf tournament – I hit my favorite shot I’ve ever hit in competition in my life on that hole going for it when we had that decision in 2015. And so there’s good vibes. I just, you know, “What would Arnie do” was my way of expressing it to Michael, which we all know exactly what he would have done. And I’m proud that I pulled that shot off and it led to a 4, 3 and a half, almost a 3.
Again, an amazing occurrence.
Even after his passing, Arnold Palmer is still making incredible moments in golf happen.