Masters Countdown: Who needs it most?
Obviously Tiger Woods would be the biggest beneficiary from a 2014 Masters title, but who else is in the mix?
The Masters is just around the corner (nine days, to be exact) and we're pretty excited. There's plenty of golf to be played between now and then but we also want to keep you informed about what's going on with Augusta.
The answer to the question in the headline -- who needs a Masters victory most? -- is obviously the 76 golfers in the field who have never won one.
It is a life-changing event, being a Masters champion. One that never really stops changing your life.
But let's limit our search to the top 20 golfers in the world -- those with the best chance at wearing green in two weeks.
Here are the golfers who most need what a Masters win would mean for their careers, ranked:
1. Tiger Woods: This should be obvious. Another green jacket would mean more to Woods than anyone else because of what it would mean for his chase for 18.
2. Brandt Snedeker: Snedeker isn't shy about what a Masters win would mean to him. He said last year he was all in on his first major coming at the Masters.
"I make no secret about this, I would trade probably all my PGA TOUR wins for this one tournament."
After coming up empty twice in recent memory with a real shot in the final round, Snedeker needs this win pretty badly.
3. Sergio Garcia: He needs a major. You know this, I know this, and he knows this. Everyone knows this. Which is why he'll probably shoot 76-81 the first two days.
4. Steve Stricker: It seems like Stricker's career is a little underappreciated because he's never won a major. But only 78 golfers in history have more PGA Tour wins than Stricker's 12. A Masters win would cap a terrific career.
5. Matt Kuchar: It would be fitting that the Georgia Tech kid who makes his home in Sea Island and used to live in Atlanta would win Augusta. He needs a few majors to validate what has been a fantastic career so far.
6. Phil Mickelson: I think a major this year gets him into the top 10 golfers ever list so it doesn't necessarily need to be a Masters. You know he wanted to tie Tiger and Arnold Palmer with four green jackets, though.
6. Dustin Johnson: His projections into his 30s would go through the roof if he was able to get PGA Tour win No. 9 and his first major at the age of 29. More than anything he needs to get the "he can't close" crowd off his back.
7. Adam Scott: 133 golfers have won exactly one major, only 77 have won two or more. Plus only three have gone back-to-back at Augusta (Jack Nicklaus, Nick Faldo, and Tiger). A win this year would be rare air, indeed.
8. Rory McIlroy: If he truly wants to assume the Tiger mantle for the next generation, he's going to have to start racking up a few more majors in the next few years.
9. Zach Johnson: If Johnson wins you can print his hall of fame ticket. He would have 12 PGA Tour wins and two majors. That would be plenty.
10. Ian Poulter: I'm afraid if Poulter doesn't get a major we'll only remember him for his match play madness. That would be a shame because he's had a fantastic career on two tours.
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