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Golf is hard. It’s even harder when your tee shot ends up right behind a tree. But, as the PGA Tour slogan reads: “These guys are good.” Nick Hardy found himself in that terrible spot at the 3M Open, right behind a giant tree.
He had the option to pitch the ball out of trouble and try to save par. But Nick Hardy isn’t out at TPC Twin Lakes to play it safe.
Instead, Hardy decided to risk one of his irons to try and make a “hero” shot. And what a hero he is.
Hardy started his day on the back nine. Therefore, his final hole of the day was the par-4 ninth hole. Coming off birdie at the par-3 eighth hole, Hardy had a very nice round going. He entered his final hole at five-under-par for the round and right in the thick of the top-of-the-pack.
But he got a little loose with his tee shot on the final hole and pushed it right. Not only did it land behind a tree, but Hardy had to go over water. And he still had 184 yards to the hole.
Hardy had no chance to go at the green without connecting with the tree trunk on his follow-through. Now, an amateur player usually busts out the “foot wedge” in this situation. But Hardy, as a PGA Tour professional, did not have this option.
Instead, he decided that sacrificing a club was worth it.
So, he took dead aim at the flag, swung hard, and bent his club badly. But that didn’t matter because Hardy had already contacted the ball. And contacted it PERFECTLY.
This shot landed just less than 12 feet from the cup. And, there was just no way Hardy was going to miss that putt.
He sank the putt to make birdie and get into the clubhouse with a six-under 65. That put him into a tie for second place following the first wave of golfers on Thursday.
If he somehow goes on to win the tournament, that shot might belong in the Hall of Fame of golf shots.
Follow Dan Zaksheske on X – formerly known as Twitter: @RealDanZak