Matthew Wolff believes that as impressive as Bryson DeChambeau has been in recent weeks, there is more to being good golfer than hitting long drives.
The 21-year-old superstar tees it up in Minnesota this week as he looks to defend the 3M Open and while speaking to the media ahead of the tournament, the hot topic of driving distance was brought to the surface.
Wolff is one of the biggest hitters on the PGA Tour, with his unique swing helping him average 312.8 yards, which sees him sit in 7th place in the Driving Distance statistics.
DeChambeau's new-found distance proved successful in Detroit as he battered his way through the course to win the Rocket Mortgage Classic, with Wolff, the overnight leader going into the final round, finishing as runner-up.
Although DeChambeau is doing everything it takes to add more speed and distance, Wolff said that he is finding more success by taking a slightly slower and more controlled swing.
"Dustin said it best. I heard a quote from him a little bit ago saying that he doesn't feel like he needs to hit it any farther to win,” Wolff said. “I feel like recently I've actually been trying to tone it down a little bit because I feel like I go hard at everything and instead of me going 110 percent at everything, I can go 90 percent and I feel like I honestly still hit the ball just as far, but I'm a little more controlled.
“I don't think that at any time soon it's going to get to the point where people need to start hitting it ridiculously far because although it might help, I think that there are people out here who prove week in and week out that, … they're not short, but they're not long, but other parts of their game are so great.”
Wolff used his friend and fellow PGA Tour player Ryan Armour as the perfect example. Armour went into the final round at the Rocket Mortgage Classic in a tie for second with DeChambeau and currently ranks 196th in Driving Distance with an average of 284.1 yards.
A slightly disappointing level-par final round of 72 saw Armour finish in T4, but he proved that distance is not the be-all and end-all.
“I was talking to him about it, about how Bryson is chasing distance and what he's doing is unbelievable, but I was talking to Ryan about it and Ryan said he had a stretch where he chased distance and he was struggling a lot because he couldn't keep the ball in the fairway, and that's his game,” Wolff said.
“He doesn't hit the ball overly long, but he's very straight, he's a very good iron player and a good putter. He went back to that and you saw how well he did in Detroit. I think the most important thing is just to stick to what you do best in your game, not try to change your game based on other people.
“Like I said, what Bryson's doing is unbelievable. I think to be so precise with your irons and still such a good putter, but hit the ball as far as he does, it is very impressive. But I wouldn't recommend it to everyone because not everyone can gain distance. Sometimes if you do try to gain distance, it affects other parts of your game.”