Dustin Johnson's Outrageous Career Trajectory Enhanced With Another WGC-Mexico Championship Win
Twenty wins. Not a lot if you're a professional basketball team or professional tennis player or even a professional football team (except for maybe the Cleveland Browns). But for a professional golfer in a sport where winning 3 percent of your starts is considered prolific, it's an embarrassment of riches. Scrooge McDuck swimming in World Golf Championship plates and jugs instead of gold coins.
Dustin Johnson grabbed the 20th PGA Tour victory of his career on Sunday at the 2019-WGC Mexico Championship in his 246th start (an 8-percent winning percentage by the way). If you want to break them down further, here's how they look.
You've likely seen all the numbers by now. Most PGA Tour wins since 2008. Fifth man in the last 50 years to reach 20 wins before age 35 (Tiger Woods, Tom Watson, Johnny Miller and Phil Mickelson are the others). Just the 38th ever to 20 wins and first in over a decade. He's done it all in the middle of an influx of probably the most talent top to bottom the PGA Tour has ever seen, too.
That's what's been remarkable. We see extraordinary players in every era, but to see someone obliterate all-timers like he did Rory McIlroy on the weekend, well it's a gear most don't have and the ones that have it often can't find it. D.J. seems to be able to summon it at will, at the snap of his long, spindly fingers.
"He just played great this week," said McIlroy. "Hats off to him. He's arguably the best player in the world. And he's got two wins already this year, and he has been one of the best players for a long time. It's nice to play with him. I always feel comfortable in that group. You wouldn't think he's trying to win his 20th PGA Tour event. He just looks like he's playing another round of golf at the Bear's Club at home."
Johnson has been on a tear in the last few years, too. He won roughly one tournament a year from 2008-15, and then he just blasted himself into space and has now won 11 of his last 55 events. Eleven of his last 55!That's where the Johnson conversation will ultimately end because we're overly obsessed with major championships, but that's certainly not where it starts or even where it should sit as the remainder of his career plays out. So let's do some projecting.
If, over the next five years, Johnson wins at even half the clip he's been winning at for the last three (again, 20 percent) that means he'll win one of ever 10 tournaments he plays. Splitting his production in half seems pretty reasonable given the run he's on.
He plays about 22-24 events a year so that means 2.2 or 2.4 wins a year for the next five years which is about 11 or 12 more and gets him to 31 or 32. Only 15 golfers have 32 PGA Tour wins, and now you're starting to talk about rarefied air with each victory.
Here are the men he would tie and surpass at each mile marker for total wins.