Let the 19th hole chatter continue.
Even with Scottie Scheffler and Cameron Smith on the recent list of first-time major winners, there’s still ample opportunity for fans to debate who is the best player never to have won a major and deliberate over who will become the next player to win his first major.
The best player never to win a major has been a double-edged tag over the years: to some an annoying attachment next to their logoed wardrobe, to others a dose of praise despite not having a major triumph on the resume.
Curtis Strange heard about it before he won the U.S. Open in back-to-back years. Ben Crenshaw, Payne Stewart, Fred Couples, Tom Kite, Davis Love III and Adam Scott all got an earful before joining the major fraternity.
Phil Mickelson finally left the conversation when he leaped for joy in the 2004 Masters, snapping a frustrating 0-for-42 stretch as a pro. Sergio Garcia ended his 0-for-73 futility in majors at the 2017 Masters. Dustin Johnson’s name stopped coming up with his win in the 2016 U.S. Open, as did Henrik Stenson’s a month later at the Open Championship.
Without further ado, here’s our list (in alphabetical order), which was recently updated ahead of the 2023 PGA Championship at Oak Hill.