CHASKA, Minn. – Tired of being heckled by a Ryder Cup spectator, golf pro Henrik Stenson went into the crowd and pulled out the offender, a man from North Dakota named David Johnson.
The Ryder Cup pits a team of U.S. golfers against their European counterparts, and the fans can get rowdy in their support.
Johnson had been razzing Stenson and his teammates after they had trouble Thursday with a 12-foot putt. Johnson hollered at Stenson, an Olympic silver medalist and British Open champion, “Silver medal is what we call first loser!”
The comment that sent the European squad over the edge was when Johnson yelled, “You can’t make this putt” at Justin Rose, Stenson’s teammate.
The pros challenged the loudmouthed American to make the putt himself, with Rose even throwing a $100 bill on the ground to sweeten the pot.
Dressed in jeans, a baggy red fleece, loafers and a baseball cap, Johnson kept yapping, joking about how small the putter was. Amid chants of “USA! USA!” Johnson calmly stroked the putt in, and the crowd went nuts.
All in good fun, Johnson hugged and high-fived Stenson, Rose, Martin Kaymer and Rory McIlroy.
Johnson later told the St. Paul Pioneer Press, “I closed my eyes, swallowed my puke and hit the putt and it happened to go in, so that was cool.”
Stenson joked with the paper that, “Now he can tell the whole world that the European team are the ones that have the most fun.”