Johnson played the last two holes in near darkness after a late storm delay and finished with a birdie for an 8 under 63 and an 11 stroke victory over Harris English.
It was the 22nd PGA Tour victory of his career, and he never made it easier. Johnson won his fifth FedEx Cup playoff event – tied with Rory McIlroy for the most part – and returned to No. 1 in the world. He finished at 30 under 254.Stemmed with a 5-stroke lead over the English before the final round, Johnson sent a towering 7-iron over the water to a forward pin on par 5 second, with the ball landing 8 feet to the side. pin for an eagle. Two holes later, his 3 wood was perfectly placed in front of the fourth green for a simple back and forth for birdie.
It was like that all day. It was like that all week.
Johnson led by 5 and came out in 30, extending his lead to 7 shots on the turn. Sunday at the 12th 500-yard hole, where on Saturday he pulled a tight draw with a 1-foot 6 iron, he hit a light fade with a 6-foot 3-foot iron for another birdie.
The only drama was whether he could set two scoring records on the PGA Tour: 31 under par by Ernie Els at Kapalua in 2003 and 253 by Justin Thomas at the Sony Open in 2017.
After the 12th birdie put him at 29 under, Johnson settled in for four straight pars. He is only the third player to finish 30 under, joining Els and Jordan Spieth, also in Kapalua, so he at least holds the record on the continent.
It was reminiscent of Friday, when he had 11 under par 11 holes and the only question was whether he could become the first player to shoot 57. He made seven consecutive pars for a 60.
This last stretch was different. Johnson cares more about trophies than records, and finishing his round was all that mattered.
It was like that three years ago at Riviera, when he was on the verge of breaking the 72-hole record of Lanny Wadkins, the oldest on the PGA Tour calendar. But he finished with three bogeys in the last 10 holes while playing conservatively, and only later did he say he didn’t know what the record was – nor did he care.
The Englishman tried to hold on, tying birdies three times with Johnson. He finished with a bogey that didn’t matter, shot 69 and moved up to No.6 in the FedEx Cup. English started the year without a full card. Now he has blocked a spot in the circuit championship.
There’s no stopping Johnson when he brings all the parts of his game together, especially the irons. He didn’t miss a green in the final round.
Kevin Kisner, who grew up playing junior golf with Johnson in South Carolina, has seen this before.
“He can absolutely dismantle a golf course when it’s there,” Kisner said. “I’ve been watching him for 25 years. I’m quite used to it. When it’s on, I just stand on the side and try to add to my bank account. ”
Kisner did that part well. He finished with a 66 and is in good shape in his bid for a spot in the Tour Championship. He’s been saying all week that he wanted to take care of this at TPC Boston instead of having to deliver next week in the BMW Championship at Olympia Fields, a course he’s never seen.
The FedEx Cup’s top 70 qualify for the BMW Championship, and there was one shot that mattered when play resumed. Louis Oosthuizen at No.99 in the standings was in the 18th fairway, easily within reach of the green on the closing par 5 hole. He birdied two putts in the dark to lock in 70th place.
Robby Shelton closed with a 63, enough to make him one of six players who moved into the top 70. The others were Oosthuizen, Harry Higgs, Alexander Noren, Russell Henley and Jason Kokrak. Five of the six eliminated players missed the cup, including Phil Mickelson. The other was Denny McCarthy, who shot 73 on Sunday.