PGA Tour Confidential: Rory McIlroy's Nike deal, Dustin Johnson's outlook, more

Dustin Johnson
Christian Petersen / Getty Images
Dustin Johnson has seven career PGA Tour victories.

D.J. ALL THE WAY?
Reiterman: Last week Dustin Johnson captured the first PGA Tour title of the season and said afterward, "If I keep playing golf like I'm playing right now, then obviously there is no limit." Well, unfortunately for him, that didn't last 48 hours, as D.J. was forced to withdraw from the Sony with the flu. But looking at the big picture, will D.J. win the most titles of any American this season? If not D.J. or Tiger, then which American will rule 2013?

Herre: Could be D.J. - he may have the most talent - but of the young guns I'd put my money on Keegan Bradley, or a player with Bradley's type of desire and drive. Also, I think the Duf might have a huge year.

Bamberger: Of the young ones, Watney has the best overall game, but Bradley is the hungriest.

Godich: I'm going with Keegan Bradley. I think the Ryder Cup will give him a load of confidence. He'll get pushed by Rickie Fowler.

Dusek: Johnson has buckets of game, but I think 2013 doesn't set up well for him at the majors. His weakness is putting, so until he proves otherwise I have trouble saying he should win a Masters. Merion is going to be tight, which may take the driver out of his hands. Oak Hill has a lot of trees, which could give him trouble. I see D.J. winning two more PGA Tour events, but Tiger could definitely win more than that. I'm not sure anyone else will.

Wei: D.J. is unbeatable when he's cruising, but he still seems to make some major course-management mistakes that can bite him in the butt when he's not playing in a 54-hole event.

Ritter: D.J.'s got as much talent as anyone, but I think the American to watch this year is Keegan Bradley. Shipnuck's profile shed new light on just how intensely Bradley approaches Tour life, and the anchored putter ruling should add even more fuel. I think he'll win multiple times this year.

Reiterman: Hard to bet against a guy who has a chip on his shoulder and doesn't back down from a challenge. Loved the story of how he quieted Tiger's chirping about his belly putter.

Walker: For the 2013 season, I rank the Americans: 1. Tiger, 2. Mickelson, 3.Bradley, 4. D.J., 5. Dufner.

Hanger: My prediction for the big American winners this year: Dufner and Woods. I also think Phil will have a mini-resurgence, and Bradley and D.J. will be solid but not all-world.

Van Sickle: I think Tiger is your guy. If not, then Keegan. After him, somebody may jump out of the crowd - Russell Henley was a heck of a college player. I like his chances to succeed in a big way this year.

Dusek: Do you have a feeling that Mickelson needs a hot start on the West Coast Swing? I think we'll know how Phil's season is going to go based on what we see at Torrey Pines, Pebble Beach, Riviera and the WGC-Accenture Match Play.

Walker: Yes, it's important, but based on the way Mickelson finished the 2012 season, I expect he'll play well in the West Coast Swing.

Van Sickle: As we've seen in the past, Phil can play lights out at any given time, and he can also go the other way. He's won early and then fizzled and vice versa. He's mercurial, which is part of his appeal. You can never count him out, and you can also never count him in.

Tell us what you think in the comments section below: Which American will win the most events 2013?

PARITY? WHAT PARITY?
Reiterman: Brandel Chamblee wrote this week that Tiger and Rory will block out all the parity talk this year. With all the talented young players out there, I just don't see it happening. What do you think?

Godich: Agreed. Tiger and Rory don't play enough to make this a two-man show. Plus, we've seen time and again how guys get hot from week to week. Just look at the Sony leader board.

Van Sickle: I've gotta go with Brandel on this one. Tiger and Rory exist in a higher stratosphere. Lots of good young players out there, lots of talent, but they're not on a level with Tiger and Rory. How many other guys are winning multiple times a year? Darned few.

Bamberger: Tiger and Rory could also go winless.

Hanger: Want to make a bet on that one?

Bamberger: Sure, if the odds are good enough. Like 100 to 1.

Wei: Rory and Tiger will dominate the headlines this year even if they stink, which they won't.

Walker: I agree with Chamblee. The Tour has a 1 percent again. You won't see 15 different major winners again for a long time.

Herre: Tiger and Rory will be the two headliners, especially leading up to the Masters. But if I've learned anything after all these years, it's that the season starts in Augusta and everything that happened before then is quickly forgotten.

Dusek: I think it's unrealistic to expect these two to hoard all the W's. Luke Donald, Keegan Bradley, Dustin Johnson, Justin Rose, Louis Oosthuzien (who just won again), Brandt Snedeker ... these guys can play, and they're going to win too.

Hanger: I think Rory will be a cut above the rest, and Tiger will be among the handful of just-below-Rory elite players.

Van Sickle: No matter how much they play or win, Tiger and Rory will block out the parity talk. Even if they don't dominate the competition, they'll dominate the talk. That's a slam dunk.

Tell us what you think in the comments section below: Will Tiger and Rory rule golf in 2013, or will parity prevail?

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