Despite challenging weather conditions, the 2024 Waste Management Phoenix Open witnessed Nick Taylor emerge as the champion after a thrilling playoff against Charley Hoffman at TPC Scottsdale in February. Enduring rain delays and frosty winds, the tournament provided an exhilarating spectacle for fans while upholding its longstanding commitment to sustainability and community engagement.

Known for its vibrant atmosphere and enthusiastic crowds, the Waste Management Phoenix Open is often dubbed the “Greenest Show on Grass.” The event boasts an impressive track record of sustainability, recognized for 11 consecutive years as the largest zero waste sporting event globally. In partnership with the Thunderbirds, tournament vendors, and the PGA TOUR, Waste Management leads operational efforts to divert 100% of waste from the landfill through recycling, composting, donation, and energy conversion.

Amidst the excitement on the course, rowdy but fun-loving fans added to the unique atmosphere of the Waste Management Phoenix Open. Their spirited cheers and lively antics created an unforgettable experience for players and spectators alike, further enhancing the tournament’s reputation as one of the most electrifying events on the PGA TOUR calendar.

As the 2024 Waste Management Phoenix Open concluded, we caught up with Dave Stockton Jr., a professional golfer and real estate expert. Hailing from Southern California, Dave’s journey from the PGA Tour to the real estate sector showcases his adaptability and commitment to excellence.

What are your thoughts on attending the Waste Management Phoenix Open this past week? Did you have any standout moments or insights from the tournament?
It is a very unique event on the schedule and one that players either embrace or pass if they don’t. It always sets records for attendance and the fan interaction is second to none. I always enjoyed playing in it back in the 90’s and early 00’s. It’s an awesome event.

Can you share a bit about your background? Where are you originally from, and what was it like growing up with golf?
I grew up in Southern California. My dad started me in the game with a few cut down clubs when I was 2 years old.

What motivated you to pursue golf professionally? Was there a defining moment or influence that sparked your decision?
My summer job was getting to caddie for my dad on the PGA Tour starting at the age of 12 and I loved doing it. I took to the game at a very early age and loved to compete. I told my parents when I was 13 that I was going to play on the PGA Tour when I got older.

When you see your name atop the leaderboard or clinch a victory, what does that personal achievement mean to you?
There’s no better feeling than to see your name at the top of the leaderboard at the end of the week. It’s a very validating feeling to know that all the hard work has paid off and your best is good enough to win.

Who are some of the golfers, past or present, who inspire and influence your game the most?
Obviously, my dad is at the top of that list. I used to love playing with Payne Stewart and Paul Azinger. Learned a lot from them.

Take us through your mental process during a round. From the first tee shot to the final putt, what goes through your mind as you navigate the course?
Sounds cliché, but it’s really about plodding your way around the course and staying in the present. Bogeys or worse tend to show up when you let your mind get ahead of yourself. It’s also equally important to not dwell on past shots or holes.

As a golfer, what are some of your favorite spots to unwind or practice in the Scottsdale area since your move here?
Now that I’m working full time as a residential real estate specialist I don’t play as much as I used to. When I do I love playing any of the 7 courses at Desert Mountain, Whisper Rock, Mirabel and Estancia.

We’ve heard that you recently embarked on an exciting career change and joined a new team. Can you tell us more about it and what prompted this transition?
Yes! I’m in my third year with Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty and I work out of the Desert Mountain office. During the summer I’m also selling real estate and teaching out of CDA National Reserve in Coeur d’Alene, ID. In January I joined the team of P2Crew with Paul Perry & Michelle O’Neill who are also out of the same office here at Desert Mountain. Our partnership enhances our brand and what we can deliver for our clients. We make a great Team and 2024 is already off to a really solid start.

( Photo Credit: Paparazzo Film – P2 Crew L-R, Dave Stockton Jr., Michelle O’Neill, and Paul Perry)

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