10 Greatest golf Shots in the History of the Masters

Throughout the first full weekend in April, Augusta National Golf Club is home to a tradition unlike any other.  That tradition is the first major tournament of the golf season, The Masters.  The Masters is arguably the most prestigious tournament that a golfer can win, as taking home a green jacket can elevate a player from being considered a mediocre pro, to being a tour legend. 

Tradition runs deep at Augusta National and the Masters.  There are several events and annual traditions that make the Masters tournament unlike any other event on the PGA Tour calendar.  The Masters also happens to be the setting for some of the most clutch performances and greatest moments in golf history.  With clutch performances, come amazing shots. 

You could literally write a short novel discussing all of the memorable shots during the Masters through the years, which made narrowing the following list down to 10 shots incredibly difficult.  With that said, what you'll find with our list is that every shot we included was not only an amazing shot, but they all also played a major role in that golfer winning a green jacket.  

1. Phil Mickelson - 2010

With two pine trees, a creek, and 207 yards between him and the hole, Mickelson delivered a towering 6-iron off the pine needles through the trees to four feet.  It was one of the gutsiest shots ever played.  Phil missed the ensuing eagle putt, but the birdie propelled him to a 67 and his third green jacket. 

2. Jack Nicklaus - 1986

Jack made a monumental back-nine charge, shooting a 30 that featured an eagle-birdie-birdie streth on 15, 16, and 17.  The round featured several clutch shots, but the tricky 12-footer he holed for birdie on 17 most resonates.  After parring the 18th and carding a 65, Nicklaus watched as Tom Kite, Norman and Steve Ballesteros faltered to give Jack his sixth green jacket. 

3. Gene Sarazen - 1935 

Sarazens historic hole - out for double eagle went a long way toward helping popularize that Augusta National Invitational, aka The Masters.  Sarazen was torn between hitting a 3-wood or a 4.  He pulled the latter.  The result was a blistering shot that flew some 235 yards, cleared a greenside pond and dropped into the hole.  The shot tied Sarazen for the lead with Craig Wood, and he went on to win the only 36 - hole playoff in Masters history. 

4.  Bubba Watson 2012 

There's likely no other player in the field who could have pulled off the shot Bubba hit on the way to victory in a playoff with Louis Oosthuizen.  After a wayward drive on the downhill 10th found the trees right off the fairway, Bubba unleashed a huge hook with his pitching wedge that landed, spun, and settled 10 feet from the hole.  Here's how Bubba described it: "I hit my 52-degree, my gap wedge, hooked it about 40 yards, hit it about 15 feet off the ground until it got under the tree, and then it started rising -- pretty easy."  

5.  Sandy Lyle - 1988 

Sandy Lyle's path to the green jacket was secured with a masterful fairway bunker shot on the 18th hole Sunday.  His 7-iron approach caught the slope behind the hole and trickled to within 10 feet.  He rolled in the putt to make birdie and finish a stroke ahead of Mark Calcavecchia.  

6.  Arnold Palmer - 1960 

The King came to the 18th hole needing a birdie to win after tying Ken Venturi with a long birdie putt on 17.  Palmer found the right side of the fairway with his drive and then rocketed a 6-iron to the uphill 18th green.  He nearly holed it and made the subsequent 5-footer to secure the title. 

7.  Jack Nicklaus - 1975 

The Golden Bear takes to the air after rolling in a 40-foot putt for birdie at 16 on Sunday.  The putt ties Jack with Tom Weiskopf, who watches the 16th tee as Nickluas makes his putt.  Weiskopf bogies the hole and Nicklause finishes with two pars to secure his fifth green jacket. 

8.  Larry Mize - 1987 

Mize and Greg Norman reached the second hole of a sudden-death playoff.  Norman hit his approach shot to the edge of the green, while Mize sprayed his second some 150 feet right and long of the green.  Norman looked destined to win his first green jacket until Mize bounced his third shot onto the green and into the hole.  When a shaken Norman missed his birdie attempt, Mize won his first and only major championship.  

9.  Louis Oosthuizen - 2012 

In the final round, Oosthuizen hit one of the most remarkable shots in the history of the tournament and recorded the rarest of scores - a double eagle.  The South African hit a 4-iron from the middle of the par-5 second fairway toward the green, 253 yards away.  The shot rolled across the green from left to right and into the hole, for the longest double-eagle shot in the history of the tournament.  

10. Tiger Woods - 2005 

Trailing Chris DiMarco, Woods knocked his tee shot over the green, where it came to rest against the collar of the first cut of rough.  After surveying the situation, he opted for a low, spinning ptich, landing the ball well above the hole.  The ball bit and then trickled down to the cup, hanging briefly on the lip before dropping in.  The crowd, and Tiger, erupted.  Woods beat DiMarco in a playoff. 

Shannon McgoneComment