PITTSFORD, N.Y. (AP) — With his back problems behind him, Dustin Johnson is back to his old dominating self.
Johnson is following up last weekend's LIV Tour victory by going 4 under through his first 13 holes in the first round of the PGA Championship. After making the turn at 1 under, he has birdied Nos. 10, 12 and 13.
That put him in a tie with clubhouse leader Bryson DeChambeau, who has already completed the first round at the frost-delayed major at Oak Hill.
Johnson tied for 48th at the Masters last month, and blamed a slow start to his year on a nagging back injury. The two-time major champion — 2020 Masters and 2016 U.S. Open — regained his form last week by winning a three-man playoff to claim the LIV Golf event in Oklahoma.
Fellow LIV player Phil Mickelson is not fairing as well. The two-time PGA Champion is two-over through 12 holes and tied for 43rd.
DeChambeau carded six birdies and two bogeys. Because of the two-hour frost delay in the morning, it was unlikely that everyone would finish the first round.
Bryson DeChambeau is crushing it again. The former U.S. Open seemed to have disappeared since joining LIV Golf last summer. He's back with a 66 for the early lead in the PGA Championship at Oak Hill.
DeChambeau was the incredible bulk when he overpowered Winged Foot to win the 2020 U.S. Open. Now he's trying to tone down his size and get back to where his game was five years ago. Thursday was a big first step.
DeChambeau has only one top 10 in six events on the Saudi-funded league. He captains a team called Crushers. He still swings fast and hard. That helped him navigate the thick rough over the last few holes to save pars.
DeChambeau was one shot ahead of Scottie Scheffler and Corey Conners among the early side of the draw. Because of the two-hour frost delay in the morning, it was unlikely that everyone would finish the first round.
Scottie Scheffler has never had a bogey-free card in 50 rounds in the majors. That changed Thursday in the PGA Championship.
Scheffler made a few key saves early on his second nine at Oak Hill and turned in a 3-under 67 to join Corey Conners in setting an early target. Conners had three bogeys offset by six birdies.
Bryson DeChambeau has shown up again. He was 4 under with two holes to play.
Scheffler thinks with wind in the forecast, Thursday might be the easiest they see Oak Hill.
It was plenty tough for Rory McIlroy. He was 3 over for his round was over the second green after his third shot. He rolled that up a steep slope and into the cup from 35 feet away for a par. That sparked him to two birdies and he salvaged a 71.
Jon Rahm had a 76 for his highest opening round of a major since the 2018 U.S. Open.
Jordan Spieth had a 73 as he tries to add the final leg of the career Grand Slam. His left wrist that knocked him out of the Byron Nelson last week seemed to hold up fine.
Jon Rahm is off to another rough start in a major — not one hole, like in the Masters, but a lot of them in the PGA Championship.
The Masters champion was 1 under for the round when he made five bogeys in a six-hole stretch at Oak Hill. His bad run began with errant tee shots — the rough on the 16th, the rough on the 17th and a deep bunker on the 18th, all leading to bogeys.
He went long of the green at No. 2 and didn't get his chip up the hill to the green, and then failed to save par from a bunker on the par-3 third.
Rahm was 4 over through 13 holes.
At the Masters, he four-putted the first hole of the tournament for a double bogey, and then recovered for a 65. He wound up winning the green jacket by four shots.
Corey Conners of Canada already had six birdies and was at 3 under with two holes to play.
Let the sun shine — and Kazuki Higa, as well.
The 28-year-old from Japan made the turn at 3 under for an early one-shot lead on the opening day of the weather-delayed PGA Championship at Oak Hill.
With the temperature warming to 55 and under a cloudless sky, Higa enjoyed a four-birdie run through Nos. 11-14 as a a member of the first threesome to tee off on the back nine. After saving par with an up-and-down out of the bunker on No. 16, Higa gave a shot back on the par-4 17th.
The opening round was delayed by nearly two hours with the temperature at near freezing at dawn.
The PGA Championship is Higa’s second career major after he missed the cut at The Masters last month.
Among the other notable players on the course, defending tournament champion Justin Thomas and Masters champion Jon Rahm are tied at 1 under.
Shaun Micheel, who won the 2003 PGA Championship played at Oak Hill, was 3 over through 11 holes after being part of the threesome to open the tournament teeing off from No. 1.
The afternoon group, which is scheduled to begin at 2:20 (EDT) includes defending U.S. Open champion Matt Fitzpatrick, Phil Mickelson and Tony Finau.
The PGA Championship is officially underway at Oak Hill.
Shaun Micheel, the 2003 PGA champion, kicked off golf's second major of the year with the opening tee shot following a frost delay of nearly two hours.
The delay likely means the groups in the 156-player field teeing off later in the day may have trouble finishing their rounds on the East Course before darkness.
Defending champion Justin Thomas begins his bid for a third PGA championship a little after 10 a.m. EDT. Thomas is playing with two-time PGA champion Rory McIlroy and 2020 PGA champion Collin Morikawa.
Masters champion and No. 1 Jon Rahm is playing with British Open champion Cameron Smith and U.S. Open champion Matt Fitzpatrick. Scottie Scheffler, the world's second-ranked player, is in a group that includes two-time PGA champion Brooks Koepka.
Thick rough and chilly temps in the morning will make the par-70 layout even more difficult for the early starters. Temperatures are expected to rise throughout the day, topping out in the mid-60s in the afternoon.
This is what everyone feared about Oak Hill hosting the PGA Championship in May.
Baby, it's cold.
The opening round is being delayed by frost and everyone is being ordered to stay off the lawns. Fairways were covered by a thin layer of frost. Temperatures were right around freezing as dawn broke.
The good news for the PGA Championship is it won't last long. The PGA of America said the first tee time would be 1 hour, 15 minutes after the practice facilities are open. And the weather is expected to get warmer each day the rest of the week.
Shaun Micheel is to hit the opening tee shot, an honor afforded the oldest former champion in the field. He won the PGA at Oak Hill in 2003. That was his only PGA Tour win.
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