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The Tour Report

February 5 2013

7:19 PM

Hahn's dance new YouTube hit


By Helen Ross, PGATOUR.COM

PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. -- James Hahn says he's addicted to YouTube. And not just for those Sean Foley and Butch Harmon swing tips he searches out there, either.

"Once you're in the YouTube portal there's all those features links on the right and I've gone to some crazy places sitting in my bed at 2:30 in the morning watching gorillas pick their nose," Hahn said. "It's amazing what's on YouTube and I absolutely love it."

Even better, Hahn has now joined Foley, Harmon and his favorite wild animals as a part of YouTube, too, after celebrating his 20-foot birdie putt on the 16th hole at TPC Scottsdale on Sunday with a "Gangnam Style" dance.

By Tuesday afternoon, when the 31-year-old Korean who grew up in the San Francisco bay area came into the interview room at the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, the video had been posted on YouTube more than 20 times. It had been viewed nearly 190,000 times -- with more than 138,000 of those coming at the PGA TOUR's channel.

Hahn, who is a rookie on the PGA TOUR this year, said he never rehearsed the dance made famous by Korean hip-hop artist Psy. Hahn had several other ideas in mind, too, so he was a little surprised when the gyrations started and his "inner child" came out.

"I've watched that golf tournament for the last ten years when I was a kid, and everyone as a grown up as a kid were saying, what would I do if I was on hole 16 in the final round and made birdie?" Hahn said. "I knew I wanted it to be something special, something fun, but it would only happen if I made birdie. 

"There were a couple ideas I was thinking about doing. The Aaron Rodgers discount double check was high on the list. There's also the Tebow, everybody knows Tebow. The Beyonce (waving his left hand) 'if you like it then should you have put a ring on it,' everybody likes that one. 

"And then the: If I made birdie, lifted up the putter, walked off the green and was possessed, and that's what came up."

The 15,000 or so people gathered at that amphitheater of a golf hole loved the dance, and his buddies keep asking for a repeat performance. Hahn was also impressed at reception he got when the man nicknamed the "Asian Brad Pitt" by his clothing sponsor, Travis Matthew, stepped to the tee.

"They did their homework and they were chanting that," Hahn said with a grin. "It was fun to be a part of the environment, the experience, and so on Saturday, made double bogey and I got booed for the first time in a week and I actually loved it. 

"And then to come back out and birdie it on Sunday, that was kind of what dreams are made of."

Hahn is living his dream this year everywhere he plays on the PGA TOUR. He's made four cuts and has two top-20 finishes, including a tie for fourth at the Humana Challenge in partnership with the Clinton Foundation.

"I've come into the season with no expectations," Hahn said. "And my expectations have not changed. Now, I expect myself to shank some shots. I expect myself to miss some 3 footers. But I also have some goals that I strive for; making cuts is one of them. I know it sounds very small, but you can't win a golf tournament if you don't make the cut.
"And also, learning to be a better golfer and learning to just be comfortable out on this TOUR and to allow my talent to come out. I think most of the times when I try really hard or I want something really bad, that's when I do my worst. So for me, it's about being in a comfort zone and having fun out here. 

"I told my wife, coming into the season, if it was the first year of 20 or if it was the first and last year on the PGA TOUR, that I would embrace every year that I have out here on TOUR, and I think I've done so far, and I think I'm just going to ride that wave till the end."