The Sony Open held true to its narrative. This yr it was Kevin Na who shook off the rust on the Sentry Event of Champions after which received at Waialae. General, seven of the top-10 gamers on the Sony performed on the TOC. So be certain that to bookmark that for 2022.
As for our picks, Marc Leishman supplied a bit of sweat, however a couple of errant drives early within the spherical proved an excessive amount of for the Aussie to beat.
The TOUR now heads to California for the 2021 American Express.
This occasion has a couple of notable modifications, most notably that it isn’t a Professional-Am anymore. Which means there shall be a 36-hole lower, slightly than the 54-hole one which we’ve seen at this occasion in yr’s previous. It additionally means the 3-day, 3-course rotation is lower down to only two programs. La Quinta Nation Membership will get the season off as the primary two days shall be held on the Stadium and Nicklaus programs.
This occasion follows the same narrative to the Sony Open. Going again to 2010, just one participant, Invoice Haas in 2015, has received this occasion after skipping each Hawaii tournaments. That stated, Haas was a previous winner right here (2010), so he’s an exception to the rule.
Whereas it has been essential that gamers participated within the Hawaii Swing, the outcomes don’t matter a lot. The final two winners at this occasion — Adam Lengthy and Andrew Landry — each missed the lower on the Sony Open and didn’t play within the TOC.
As talked about, it’s only a two-course rotation this time. Each the Stadium and Nicklaus Course are very straightforward by TOUR requirements, measuring a bit of over 7,100 yards for par 72’s. The Nicklaus Course normally performs a couple of stroke simpler on common, so it’s the one to focus on for those who’re taking part in first-round leaders.
This match is ready as much as be a birdie-fest. The one winner within the final 30 years who didn’t break 20-under par was Charley Hoffman in 2007. Scoring will probably be a bit of more durable with an additional spherical on the Stadium Course changing La Quinta, however that received’t change the technique right here. We’ll nonetheless be on the lookout for somebody who can hold the motive force in play, hit a ton of greens and catch hearth with the putter on Bermudagrass.
Jon Rahm was the clear favourite, however he has withdrawn. That signifies that Patrick Cantlay, Patrick Reed, Tony Finau, Scottie Scheffler, Brooks Koepka and Sungjae Im are the brand new top-six on the board between +1300 and +2100.
Koepka is the simplest one among that group to avoid since he didn’t play in Hawaii. In the event you actually needed to play one of many favorites, I’d have a look at Cantlay and Reed, each of whom I had on my TOC card to no avail. Each Reed and Cantlay have respectable historical past right here. The previous received in 2014 and Cantlay completed ninth in his most up-to-date look in 2019. You could possibly additionally make a case for Im, who has completed contained in the top-15 in each of his begins on this occasion. In the meantime, Scheffler was third in his debut at this occasion final season and completed 13th on the TOC.
The multi-course rotation and Professional-Am format has made this a tricky occasion to handicap up to now, however the alternatives have been there since favorites are likely to battle to win right here. Rahm (2018) is the one participant within the final decade to win this occasion with odds shorter than +2500.
Due to that, I’ll avoid the highest of the board and take a couple of extra probabilities on longshots.
We’ll begin with Cameron Champ at +5500. Champ didn’t have the very best displaying on the TOC however he did end 21st right here final yr. He’s clearly lengthy off the tee and that may make all of those Par 5’s pretty straightforward for him. The California native additionally tends to pop up in his dwelling state. He’s received the Safeway and completed within the top-10 of two California occasions final fall, The Zozo and PGA Championship.
Subsequent up is Patton Kizzire at +9000. Kizzire continued a superb run of type on the Sony the place he completed seventh. That makes 4 top-25 finishes in his final 5 occasions, going again to final fall. The AmEx has by no means actually been a great place for him, however sturdy previous outcomes, whereas good to have, aren’t a prerequisite to win right here. We’ll take an opportunity on his present type at that price.
My final play on this vary is Cameron Davis at +9000. Davis completed center of the pack on the Sony however he had an attention-grabbing week. He led the sphere off the tee, however was inconsistent along with his irons. He did appear to type that out, although, as he gained over a stroke along with his method within the final spherical. Davis is normally a superb ball-striker, so I’ll take an opportunity he shook off the rust and has issues ironed, out so to talk.
Contemplating that the final two winners right here had been +20000 and +50000, respectively, it’s onerous to not take some pictures down on this vary.
Usually, I’d follow only a couple performs this dep, however with nobody actually on the high of the cardboard catching my eye. I’ve determined to unfold out on 4 lengthy pictures down right here as an alternative.
My first play on this vary will come on Talor Gooch at +10000. Gooch has completed fourth and 17th in his previous two begins right here. He missed the lower on the Sony, however he did have sturdy driving metrics. His irons had been a little bit of a difficulty, however after a poor opening spherical his method was discipline common in Spherical 2.
Gooch is normally a superb iron participant, so I’ll probability that he’ll get that half again this week.
We’ll additionally check out Sepp Straka at +10000. Straka has been on an excellent run along with his method recreation for the reason that fall and has made eight of his final 9 cuts. He’s coming off a 25th on the Sony the place he was capable of overcome some uncharacteristic driving points. Straka is normally a stable driver, so we’ll see if he can regain that type at an occasion the place he completed fourth a yr in the past.
Subsequent up is Charley Hoffman at +10000. Hoffman has a superb mixture for type and historical past. He completed 14th final week due to some sturdy ball-striking and he’s bought fond reminiscences at this occasion due to a win in 2007 and a runner-up in 2015.
Adam Schenk is my final play at +21000. Schenk was 14th right here a yr in the past, so he can play effectively on these programs. He bought off to a extremely dangerous begin at Waialae final week and was by no means actually capable of recuperate. His ball-striking did return to the sphere common the second spherical. The driving force is normally his greatest membership, so this match ought to enable him to take higher benefit of that.
The Amex Card
- Cameron Champ +5500 (.6 items)
- Patton Kizzire +9000 (.37 items)
- Cameron Davis +9000 (.37 items)
- Charley Hoffman +10000 (.33 items)
- Talor Gooch +10000 (.33 items)
- Sepp Straka +10000 (.33 items)
- Adam Schenk +21000 (.16 items)
Whole Stake: 2.49 items
Tag: American Express