Patrick Reed was not the most popular Masters champion but he’s a deserving one

The game of professional golf does not have home and away players. Fans, and especially patrons, as they are called at the Masters, do not root against players. They root harder and louder for some more than others, but there’s never any active rooting against the other guy playing next to or on the same course as the one that may be your preferred choice.

But the muted reactions and awkward silences were deafening on Sunday at Augusta National. Patrick Reed held off a trio of chargers at different stages over a final round afternoon of 71 that delivered him the green jacket. First came Rory McIlroy, then came Jordan Spieth, and last came Rickie Fowler. All three were favored more by these Augusta galleries in a distinctly noticeable way.

It did not matter to Reed. He probably preferred it that way, choosing to use the favoritism to stay pissed off and stay on top of the leaderboard. This is generally where he succeeds most and why he’s been such a brilliant asset for team USA in the Ryder Cup, the one event where there are home and away teams.

So much of what happens at Augusta National can only be discerned by crowd reactions. You have no phone so there’s no Twitter updating

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