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PGA Tour: Preview Puerto Rico Open fantasy, betting picks

Preview – Puerto Rico Open – Coco Beach Golf and Country Club – Rio Grande, Puerto Rico —

The PGA Tour’s opposite-field event this week features 132 players at the Puerto Rico Open in Rio Grande at Coco Beach Golf and Country Club.

Former U.S. Open champion Graeme McDowell is one of the headliners in the field along with European Team Ryder Cup stalwart Ian Poulter and a host of players with PGA Tour victories including Ben Crane, Chris Kirk, Boo Weekley, Jonas Blixt and Robert Garrigus.

This week is an opportunity for some players to break through for their maiden PGA Tour titles including Canada’s Graham DeLaet, Peter Uihlein and Bryson Dechambeau.

FANTASY: Consider players in great form heading into Puerto Rico. Dominic Bozzelli is a great example of a trending player and hungry for his first win. Take DeLaet, as well. He is overdue for a victory. Brown plays well this particular week and posted a runner-up effort earlier this spring at Riviera Country Club. A veteran always finds his way into the mix, this week look for Alex Cejka to make some noise.

BETTORS: Wesley Bryan is the top betting pick at skybet.com at 16-to-1 odds. DeLaet and G-Mac are 20-1 picks, but look for Brown (28-1) to contend. Brown won this tournament in 2013 (at a different venue) and has a pair of Top 5s and a T-10 in five starts at the PR Open. For a longer shot, take Cameron Tringale, who has been quiet all season. He opened at 66-1 odds.

Other Golf News:

  • The WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play is underway with Group Play. Players compete in Group Play through Friday before moving into Round of 16 Saturday and trimming down to one champion by Sunday in Austin, Texas. Jason Day is the defending champion.
  • The LPGA Tour tees off Thursday with the Kia Classic. Ariya Jutanugarn is the betting favorite at 7 1/2-1 odds, while Inbee Park and Lydia Ko are second best at 10-1. Park won the HSBC Women’s Champions in Singapore earlier this season. Jutanugarn and Ko are both looking for their first wins of 2017.
  • Golf’s first major of the year takes place next week with the LPGA Tour’s ANA Inspiration at Mission Hill Country Club in Rancho Mirage, California.

Fowler wins Honda Classic by 4 shots

Rickie Fowler (12-under) made it interesting Sunday at the PGA Tour’s Honda Classic for a stretch, but the Orange Icon captured the title in a four-shot victory at PGA National.

Fowler, who now has four career PGA Tour wins, should re-enter the Official World Golf Ranking Top 10 come Monday morning. His 66-66-65 start set the stage for the triumph.

Gary Woodland and Morgan Hoffmann logged T-2 efforts at 8-under. For Hoffmann, it was a career-best finish. Woodland was within a shot of Fowler on the

Rickie Fowler current official PGA TOUR headshot
(Photo by: Chris Condon/PGA TOUR)

final nine holes, but failed to keep pace.

Six players ended T-4 including former U.S. Open champion and World No. 1 Martin Kaymer alongside Wesley Bryan, Chad Collins, Tyrrell Hatton, Billy Horschel and Jhonattan Vegas. Vegas posted a final-round best 64.

Fowler opened week as an 18-to-1 betting pick.

Other Golf News:

  • Amy Yang (22-under) captured the Honda LPGA Thailand for her second career LPGA Tour victory. She moved up to No. 8 in the latest Rolex Rankings. So Yeon Ryu was runner up, while Sei Young Kim finished third. Lexi Thompson, Lydia Ko and Ariya Jutanugarn logged Top 10s.
  • Weather shortened the European Tour’s Joburg Open to 54-holes. South Africa’s Darren Fichardt collected his fifth career title winning by a shot. It marked the 23-year professional’s first victory since 2013 and earns him a spot in the Open Championship.
  • The World Golf Championship – Mexico Championship takes center stage next week. Formerly at Doral, the event has moved to Club de Golf Chapultepec in Mexico City. Dustin Johnson makes his World No. 1 debut.
  • Jason Day, world No. 2, withdrew from the WGC-Mexico Championship with the flu.

Betting, Fantasy Preview: PGA Tour’s The Honda Classic

Preview – PGA Tour — The Honda Classic – PGA National – Palm Beach Gardens, Florida –

The PGA Tour heads to the Sunshine State for the Florida Swing beginning with The Honda Classic at PGA National in Palm Beach Gardens.

Twelve of the world’s Top 25 players headline this week including Top 10 players Justin Thomas, Sergio Garcia and Adam Scott. Several international players – including Masters champ Danny Willett — are in the field this week as players gear up for the World Golf Championship-Cadillac Championship in March and the Masters in April.

The famed “Bear Trap” takes center stage at PGA National this week – site of the Honda Classic since 2007. Jack’s Bear Trap – holes

Adam Scott current official PGA TOUR headshot
(Photo by Caryn Levy/PGA TOUR) 

15, 16 and 17 – are expected to decide the champion. The Champions Course (Par 70, 7,110 yards) ranks among the most difficulty on tour each year with plenty of water hazards.

PGA National has crowned a solid list of international-born champions including Scott, Rory McIlroy, Ernie Els, Rory Sabbatini, Camilo Villegas and Y.E. Yang. Americans Michael Thompson and Russell Henley won in 2013 and 2014 respectively.

2016 Results:

  • Scott (9-under) edged Garcia by a shot to capture the title. It was the start of two-straight PGA Tour wins for the Aussie. Thomas was T-3 at 5-under alongside Blayne Barber, while Vijay Singh, Billy Horschel and Rickie Fowler were among those logging Top 10 finishes.

FANTASY: Take international players, which have a great history at PGA National.  Scott is certainly a great pick for this venue coming in as defending champion. But, he also played well last week (T-11) at Riviera to finish off the West Coast Swing. He is fresh, rested. Take Russell Knox, who has Top 3s in two of his last three Honda appearances. Thomas is a must-start after three wins already this season.

BETTORS: Scott, at 12-to-1 odds, is the betting favorite at Ladbrokes.com. But for better value, take a shot with Knox (28-1) and Daniel Berger (33-1). Berger lost here in a playoff in 2015 to Harrington. His maturity might pay off this week. Take Louis Oosthuizen (28-1), who contended in Australia last week on the European Tour. Travel concerns me, but he is a streaky player when he gets it going.

Other Golf News:

  • Dustin Johnson’s win at Genesis Open moved him to No. 1 in the latest Official World Golf Rankings. It marks his first stint at the top spot. He is idle this week.
  • The LPGA Tour hosts the Honda LPGA Thailand this week. Shanshan Feng of China is the betting favorite at 6-1 odds. Last week’s winner Ha Na Jang comes in at 12-1 alongside Lexi Thompson.
  • The European Tour hosts the Joburg Open this week.
  • Fred Couples (16-under) beat out Miguel Angel Jimenez by three shots to capture the PGA Tour Champions’ Chubb Classic. It marked his first win of 2017.

PGA Tour preview: Waste Management Phoenix Open

Preview – PGA Tour – Waste Management Phoenix Open – TPC Scottsdale (Stadium Course) – Scottsdale, Arizona –

This week could be a look at the future of the PGA Tour as young stars – four of them in the Top 10 of the Official World Golf Rankings – square off at TPC Scottsdale for the Waste Management Phoenix Open.

Since 1932, the PGA Tour has been hosting tournaments in the Phoenix area. At 7,266 yards and a par 71, players will need to go low at the Stadium Course to contend in a week of 70-degree temps and light winds.

Justin Thomas 
(Photo by Jennifer Perez/PGA TOUR)

More than 500,000 people are expected on site during the week, which coincides with the National Football League’s Super Bowl. The week-long party at TPC Scottsdale features fans packing par-3 16th hole, which is surrounded by stadium seating.

Young stars under 30 years of age are featured this week including former World No. 1 Jordan Spieth, 5th-ranked and defending champion Hideki Matsuyama, Ryder Cup hero Patrick Reed and Justin Thomas, who won both tournaments in the Aloha Swing in January and now ranks No. 8.

Fan favorite and Arizona State grad Phil Mickelson, a three-time champion at this event, is also playing. He last won in 2013 and holds the course-record 60. He is one of several past major champs over 30 in the field along with Bubba Watson and Zach Johnson.

2016 Results:

  • Matsuyama (14-under) edged Rickie Fowler in a playoff. He opened with 65 to tee off the week and led the field in Greens in Regulation. Harris English was T-3 along with Danny Lee. Players logging Top 10s included J.B. Holmes, Shane Lowry and John Huh.

Golf Channel and CBS Sports shares the television coverage.

FANTASY: Mickelson attended nearby ASU and won here just a few seasons ago nearly shooting 59. He started 2017 with some solid showings. Expect the same here. Take Matsuyama with this history here including T-4, T-2 and playoff win during his last three tries. He also dominated fall season worldwide. Thomas leads the FedEx Cup standings and is the hottest player in the game. Play his confidence. Under the radar picks: Gary Woodland and Keegan Bradley.

BETTORS: This week provides unique cross-sports betting opportunities with the Super Bowl and PGA Tour Sunday proposition
wagers. Spieth is the favorite at 8-to-1 odds at Skybet.com. For our money, consider Matsuyama to defend at 10-1. But for a bigger payout, take Brendan Steele at 33-1. He has three Top 6s here, won in the fall and logged a Top 10 two weeks ago. C.T. Pan (100-1) is worth a wager coming off a T-2 at Torrey Pines last week.

Other Golf News:

  • Eight of last nine editions of the Waste Management Phoenix Open have been decided in playoffs or by just one stroke. Look for final-round drama again this year.
  • Henrik Stenson (6 ½-1 favorite) headlines the European Tour’s Omega Dubai Desert Classic this week. He is the best ranked player in the field at No. 4. Tiger Woods, Sergio Garcia, Martin Kaymer and Graeme McDowell are competing.
  • Woods is listed at 40-1 odds to win this week. A tall task for a player who missed the cut last week on the PGA Tour. But, consider World No. 23 Tyrrell Hatton (20-1) and Tommy Fleetwood (33-1) who won Abu Dhabi two weeks ago.

Rahm’s Torrey Pines triumph boosts him to 46th in world

Jon Rahm’s final-round 65 including an eagle at the 72nd hole at Torrey Pines secured the 22-year-old his maiden PGA Tour title and moved him up the Official World Golf Rankings.

Rahm, who finished 13-under for a three-shot win at the Farmers Insurance Open, moved tom 137th to 46th in the latest rankings. He beat out a crowded leader board Sunday in San Diego as C.T. Pan and Charles Howell III shared second at 10-under followed by Justin Rose, Pat Perez, Keegan Bradley and Tony Finau logging T-4 efforts at 9-under.

For Rose, he moved up two spots to 11th in the rankings. He was runner-up in Hawaii just a few weeks ago and is peaking early in 2017. The Top 10 remained mostly unchanged headlined by Jason Day, who missed the cut at Torrey Pines. Hideki Matsuyama moved up to No. 5 switching places with former World No. 1 Jordan Spieth.

Other Golf News:

  • Locking up his third European Tour title in last than a year, Jeunghun Wang moved up 21 spots to 39th in the rankings after capturing the CommercialBank Qatar Masters. He broke free from a 9-way tie at the top through 36 holes.
  • The European Tour hosts the Omega Dubai Desert Classic this week in the United Arab Emirates, while the PGA Tour heads to Scottsdale, Arizona for the Waste Management Phoenix Open.
  • Brittany Lincicome edged Lexi Thompson in a playoff to win the Pure Silk Bahamas LPGA Classic to tee of the 2017 LPGA Tour schedule. Both finished 26-under with American Stacy Lewis ending up a shot back.
  • U.S.-born players won just two LPGA Tour titles in all of 2016 — the lowest tally since the tour’s inception. The tour moves to Australia for the ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open in mid-February.