When Patrick Cantlay sat down in front of the media Tuesday at Kapalua, it had been exactly 100 days since he’d last been seen at a golf tournament.
The reigning FedExCup champ decided to take an extended break following the Ryder Cup last September, and he hasn’t competed in an individual Tour event since the Tour Championship earlier that month. Cantlay was the only top-10 player to not tee it up in a fall event or the Hero World Challenge, though he also apparently hasn’t spent much of his $15 million prize from East Lake.
“I did some workouts and kind of just spent some time at home,” Cantlay said. “I travel so much playing golf all over that spending time at home is really nice, and not getting up too much, you know, is really restful for me because I do go so hard and play so many tournaments and practice to get ready for those tournaments during the year that it’s nice to just decompress and take some time off at home.”
So, nothing exciting? Not if reading a book on the couch doesn’t count.
“I enjoy watching golf, so I watched the golf, and there were plenty of guys that played really well,” Cantlay added, “and although I was sitting at home watching, no part of me thought that it would be better if I was playing.”
Full-field scores from the Sentry Tournament of Champions
Yet, after a few rainy days in Southern California, where the Cali native spent the holidays, Cantlay was excited to dust off the clubs and head to sunny Hawaii. He talked about being easier on himself in this first event back, but as far as the year goes, the world No. 4 is expecting big things after a two-win campaign.
“It sounds silly, but I think success breeds success,” Cantlay said. “So, I think the more you win golf tournaments the more comfortable you get when you are coming down the stretch of a golf tournament near the lead or in the lead. So, the more times you can succeed under pressure, I think the more likely you are to do it in the future. So, from that perspective it was extremely helpful because I closed out a lot of tournaments and matches at the Ryder Cup in a really positive fashion, and I think that carryover, those positive memories, will only help me going forward.”