The Phoenix Open belongs to Rory McIlroy, according to golf influencer Paige Spirinac.
In 2022, she picked Cameron Smith to win the Open and joked at the time that people would be a lot richer if they turned the sound on during her videos.
Smith became the first Australian to lift the Claret Jug since 1993 and his first major success saw his scoring under 20 for Tiger Woods’ tournament record at St Andrews set in 2000.
McIlroy, who missed the Home of Golf miserably last summer, has to wait until this year to see if he can add to his four major tournament streak.
He won the Dubai Desert Classic last month to start his year in style and Spirinac believes he will continue his fine run at the boisterous Phoenix Open, where the winner will receive a £16.5m prize.
Videos from the 16th hole at TPC Scottsdale went viral last year when beer cans and bottles were thrown on and around the green after Sam Ryder’s hole-in-one.
And with the Super Bowl in town, there might be other beer lovers lurking.
Spirinac entered the NFL’s mind by trading the club for the pigskin as she showed off her soccer skills.
In golf, however, McIlroy said he was looking forward to playing.
“It’s going to be an experience,” he said. “Most of the fans here aren’t there to watch golf and it’s a different environment, but it’s fine if we’re talking about developing the game.”
The 33-year-old has won two of his last three World Events and hasn’t finished outside the top ten in his last eight.
“I said at the end of last year that I felt I was as complete a player as ever. If you look at my stat categories, there aren’t really any glaring weaknesses there, and I’ve been working very hard on that to try to become a more complete player.
The Master is the major that has eluded him so far and believes that it is within his reach.
“I don’t think I should be here if I thought my best days weren’t ahead of me,” McIlroy added. “Like I can’t sit here and talk to you guys and try to win golf tournaments if I think the glory days are over.”