Wild’s Matt Boldy making no bold predictions about his golf game before pro event in northern Minnesota
EAST GULL LAKE, Minn. — If things don’t work out for Matt Boldy next weekend at the PGA Tour Canada’s CRMC Championship presented by Gertens he can always fall back on his other job.
Boldly received a sponsorship exception to compete in the 72-hole event at Cragun’s Legacy courses Aug. 31-Sept 3. The second-annual tournament comes at the perfect time for Boldy, who was the 12th overall pick of the 2019 NHL Draft and recorded 31 goals and 32 assists for the Minnesota Wild in 2022-23.
“Honestly, Ryan Hartman’s agent knew the guy who was setting it up and I heard they were looking for someone from our team,” Boldly said. “They asked Ryan and Ryan couldn’t do it because he had something that weekend. He mentioned my name and I got asked and I thought it was a pretty cool opportunity, so it was something I jumped on pretty quick and thought it would be cool.”
Boldly will likely be the big draw on Friday, Sept. 1, when the second round of the CRMC will also be Hockey Day at Cragun’s. Fans are asked to wear their favorite hockey player’s jersey and especially Boldy’s if they have it. Admission to all four rounds of the tournament will be free thanks to the Northern Pacific Center.
“I’ve played golf my whole life,” Boldly said. “Ever since I was little just growing up. I do pretty well. I have my ups and downs obviously, as everyone does. I would say I’m alright.”
Boldly will tee off at 9:30 a.m. Thursday and 2:40 p.m. Friday for fans hoping to follow his group. If he makes the weekend cut, his tee time will be determined by the field and other scores.
The Millis, Massachusetts, native visited the Legacy twice this summer already in preparation and is eager to attack the Tom Lehman redesign.
“It’s pretty sweet,” he said. “The layout is really cool. There are some hard holes and some good ones and stuff like that. I’m definitely looking forward to it.”
The 22-year-old left wing said he’ll be there to have fun and put on a show. His brother will be on his bag so it’ll be family time as well before the long grind of the NHL season begins.
The Wild training season will begin Sept. 12 so his main focus has been preparing for hockey, but he admitted he plays golf often so he’s prepared. According to GHIN, his handicap index is plus-0.6, which is slightly better than a scratch golfer at 0. He plays out of Olympic Hills in Eden Prairie.
"It’s not going to hurt my feelings if I go out there and shoot 95 or if I go out there and play really well," Boldy said. "That’s my mindset going into it.
“I’m super excited about this. Not only is it a cool experience for me, but it’s a cool experience for fans. Minnesota is the state of hockey. They love it so much. They’re so passionate and for them to come out and watch me and be a part of that experience and see how great our fans are is going to be cool, especially Friday. Just looking around and seeing Wild jerseys on the course is going to be pretty sweet.”
Last season, Jake Knapp won the event as the touring pros went low. Knapp finished 26 under par in the 72-hole event to win by two shots at Cragun's.
Boldly said the CRMC Championship is just a perfect way to cap off the summer. Many of the players will be in town Monday, Aug. 28, for the start of practice rounds. Those who haven’t made the field yet will be vying for spots at the Monday qualifier at The Preserve at Grand View Lodge.
Player practice rounds will be Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday with Wednesday, Aug. 30, being the Northern Pacific Center Pro-Am featuring the Travis Mathew Tour Trailer “Eleanor.”
The tournament begins Thursday, Aug. 31. It’s bring your kids to the course day. Autographs and photos with the pros will be available.
VIP tickets will be available for unlimited food and drink. They are $100 a day or $300 for the four-day tournament and can be purchased at the Legacy Clubhouse.
Saturday, Sept. 2, will be the Saturday Night Jam featuring Mason Dixon Line Band sponsored by Clow Stamping Company. The cost is $25 and includes food.
Sunday’s final round will conclude with the Paul Bunyan Axe Trophy presentation on the 18th green.
Boldly said he’s comfortable playing around crowds when it comes to hockey but said it will be different on the golf course. That said, he’s hoping for a big crowd when he’s out there.
“I think the biggest thing for me is I hope this brings a lot of people into the sport of golf,” Jack Wawro, director of golf at Cragun’s Legacy Courses said. “Usually hockey and golf go together, but I’d like as many people there to support the golf tournament and if hockey is the reason they come out that’s awesome. If even more people come to the golf tournament than normally wouldn’t because Boldy is there then great. I hope he brings a lot more fans and attention to the tournament and the sport for sure.
“Also, I’m excited to see how he does. I’m excited to see how he stacks up. I lot of people are debating about it.”
When the tournament’s over, he’s prepared to turn his focus back to hockey.
“Nothing too crazy,” Boldly said about his expectations for the hockey season. “I just want to go in and play good hockey. That’s always my expectation. I don’t really think of pressure too much. It’s more about just playing my best and helping the team as much as I can. We have team expectations to do certain things and that will come throughout the season, but for me personally, it’s to just go out and play my game and make the biggest difference I can.”