By this time on Sunday, Draftkings will have paid someone a cool million dollars for winning this week’s big Millionaire Maker tournament for the PGA Championship. I don’t know about you, but I am already thinking about how many Daniel Berger posters I can buy with that million dollars but that’s just me.
This year’s PGA Championship will be hosted at Whistling Straits in Kohler, Wisconsin. What you need to know about Whistling Straits is that it hosted the PGA Championship in 2004 and 2010 and is a par 72 course that stretches over 7,500 yards. Once again, long bombers will have an advantage here but accuracy will also be very important this week. The key stats that I will focus on for this contest will be as follows:
Strokes Gained Tee to Green (SG:T2G): This stat is very useful for any course as it allows us to see what golfers are making up strokes from the time they tee it off to when they are putting. This stat is even more useful for longer courses as golfers who excel in this area will have more potential to separate themselves from the field.
Greens in Regulation (GIR): Greens in Regulation will be key here as well so we can separate the golfers in this field that are consistently reaching the greens in regulation, giving them more opportunities for birdies and low scoring.
Total Driving: Total Driving is how long and accurate players are off the tee. This is especially important for courses that have narrow fairways and are unforgiving to players that cannot keep it in the fairway.
Don’t be surprised to see Course History, Recent Form, SG:Putting, and Scrambling all sprinkled in as well as they will all be important this week. Alright, on to the money!
$11,700 (DraftKings) $11,100 (Victiv)
Odds to Win: 9-1
Predicted Ownership: 12%
This may be the only time all season where you can get Mcllroy for close to 10% ownership and that could pay off in a big way. Coming off a bum ankle or not, Rory has the ability to run away with this tournament. He is obviously a bomber off the tee but what I really love about Rory is his staggering 70% GIR percentage which will be very important if you want to contend this week. Another thing I want to point out is that he did have a T3 here in 2010 and he is ummm Rory Mcllroy…
$9,900 (DraftKings) $9800 (Victiv)
Odds to Win: 14-1
Predicted Ownership: 16.2%
Watson’s ownership is hard to predict this week because he is sitting in between Justin Rose and Rickie Fowler who will no doubt be popular plays so that could help keep his ownership percentage down. However, because of Bubba’s scorching recent form, he will not be overlooked by everyone. Bubba’s game fits this course nicely as he can obviously crush it off the tee, but he also ranks in the top 40 in Total Driving and GIR Percentage. Bubba has posted back to back solo 2nd place finishes at the RBC Canadian and then last week at the WGC Bridgestone Invitational. He also had a solo 2nd place finish here in 2010 after losing in a playoff to Martin Kaymer. All the Bubba this week!!!
$10,200 (DraftKings) $8300 (Victiv)
Odds to Win: 22-1
Predicted Ownership: 9.7%
Adam Scott seems to be one of the higher end guys that always gets overlooked in the larger tournaments which is pretty bizarre if you ask me. Scott was pretty disappointing last week so naturally, that makes him one of my favorite plays as his ownership percentage probably took a hit. Let’s not forget that Scott posted a top 5 finish at the US Open and a top 10 finish at the Open Championship before the disappointment last week. He also ranks highly in every key category for this week as he is 11th in SG:T2G, and ranks in the top 10 in both Total Driving and GIR Percentage.
$8000 (DraftKings) $7800 (Victiv)
Odds to Win: 40-1
Predicted Ownership: Chalk
Matsuyama is expected to be a chalk play this week but hopefully his letdown at the WGC last week will keep his GPP ownership under 20%. Either way he is a great value this week at his price and should serve as a strong anchor for cash game lineups. I don’t think Matsuyama wins this week, but he is a great bet for a top 20 maybe even top 10 finish. He ranks in the top 5 in SG:T2G, top 10 in Total Driving, and top 20 in GIR Percentage.
$7800 (DraftKings) $7700 (Victiv)
Odds to Win: 40-1
Predicted Ownership: Chalk
It is pretty hard not to love Koepka this week, or any week for that matter. To make things even more enticing, he is only the 20th expensive golfer this week on DraftKings so many people will be on him for that price. Koepka is another guy like Matsuyama who I don’t think wins this week, but does play well at Whistling Straits. He has posted top 20 finishes in his last 5 starts, including the US Open and Open Championship. He ranks 19th in GIR Percentage and 5th in SG:Putting. I personally will have little exposure to Koepka in GPPs because of his ownership but is another great value for cash games.
$7400 (DraftKings) $7200 (Victiv)
Odds to Win: 70-1
Predicted Ownership: 12.2%
Paul Casey is quietly one of the strongest values this week. Because of his up and down recent form, I expect him to be a bit under-owned this week which makes him an even better play. Casey ranks 5th in GIR Percentage, 10th in SG:T2G, and 15th in Total Driving. He is coming off a top 20 finish at the WGC last week, and he had a T12 here in 2010. Make sure he is on your radar this week!
$7200 (DraftKings) $6000 (Victiv)
Odds to Win: 90-1
Predicted Ownership: 17.8%
Thomas is one of my favorite young guys to watch on Tour. He is very long off the tee which should help him out this week. Aside from being a bomber, Thomas ranks in the top 25 in SG:T2G and 2nd in Par 5 scoring average which will give him many scoring opportunities on the four par 5s at Whistling Straits.
$6700 (DraftKings) $5800 (Victiv)
Odds to Win: 175-1
Predicted Ownership: 14.7%
Jason Bohn is coming off 3 straight top 15 finishes and almost nobody cares! Bohn doesn’t hold the name value as some other guys on Tour so that will help his ownership stay under 20% and probably under 15% in the Milly. He is one of the most accurate guys on Tour which will be key this week with the narrow fairways and a ton of bunkers. He ranks in the top 25 in GIR percentage and 3rd in Driving Accuracy. It is hard to argue with Bohn this week at his cheap price tag.
$6500 (DraftKings) $5700 (Victiv)
Odds to Win: 200-1
Predicted Ownership: 8.6%
I feel like nobody has said a word about Steele being insanely underpriced this week. I understand the pricing is soft with such a tough field but Steele is priced with guys like Chris Wood and Joost Luiten…C’MON. Steele ranks in the top 25 in GIR Percentage and Total Driving and he is 16th in SG:T2G. He is a screaming value this week who is massively underrated. Take a long hard look at Steele before you lock your rosters this week.
Odds to Win: 200-1
Predicted Ownership: 3.7%
While Martin’s recent form has been uninspiring lately, he does have 4 top 10s this season, including a top 5 finish at the Players Championship. While Martin is not extremely long off the tee, he is solid in just about every category and ranks in the top 25 in GIR Percentage. If you’re looking for a cheap punt that could surprise some people this week, Martin is your guy!
Guys I’m Fading: Justin Rose, Rickie Fowler, Phil Mickelson, Louis Oosthuizen, Zach Johnson, Shane Lowry, Danny Willett
My Winner: Rory Mcllroy…It’s time for Rory to put the Spieth vs Rory debate to rest. Rory quiets any talk of Spieth taking that number one spot this week. RORY, RORY, RORYYY!!!!
Best of luck this week, show me the MILLY!!!