When filling out a DraftKings lineup (use the promo code SGP), picking among the favorites is a fairly safe proposition. It’s when you have to choose between a pool of golfers down the line is where you make or break your chance to win big.
Here’s the critical decisions you’ll face as you fill out your lineup for the 2019 CJ Cup @ Nine Bridges (values courtesy of DraftKings).
Golfers Valued $8,000-$8,900
- Danny Willett – $8,900
- Matthew Wolff – $8,800
- Joaquin Niemann – $8,700
- Kevin Na – $8,600
- Andrew Putnam – $8,500
- Byeong Hun An – $8,400
- Chez Reavie – $8,300
- Tyrrell Hatton – $8,200
- Lucas Glover – $8,100
- Dylan Frittelli – $8,000
It’s great to see Danny Willett back healthy and playing elite golf. 15 months ago he had dropped to 462nd in the world, but with two big boy wins and a handful of other strong performances he’s back inside the Top 30 in the world. Off the heels of his win at the BMW PGA Championship, Willett’s form is strong heading into the CJ Cup. He’s hit close to 78% of his greens in regulation over his last three tournaments and has putted very well over that stretch. Willett is one of the best ball strikers in the world when he’s on top of his game, and if that carries over to Nine Bridges he’s in for another good finish.
Viktor Hovland and Collin Morikawa are receiving more buzz this week and it’s reflective in their DraftKings prices, but Matthew Wolff deserves to be right there in the discussion and shouldn’t be overlooked. Besides his win at the 3M Open, Wolff hasn’t been able to be as consistent as Morikawa or Hovland have, and it was primarily because of his performance off the tee. But lately he’s found a little bit more stability in that area of his game and he should be able to take advantage of the wide fairways of Nine Bridges with his prestigious length. He’s also putted well enough over his last few tournaments to be able to hang tough in a low scoring tournament that this year’s CJ Cup is expected to be.
The results for Tyrrell Hatton lately have been just OK, but for a player as talented as him he should be racking up more Top 10’s than he has been. His struggles over his last handful of European Tour events has been his accuracy off the tee, but he’s been able to overcome that by hitting 75% of his greens in regulation over his last two tournaments to post consecutive Top 20 finishes. With wider fairways presented to him this week, Hatton should be hitting more often from the short grass and can take advantage of how well he’s striking his irons of late. His putter is also heating up heading into the event, and that could spell the perfect storm for a good finish on the leaderboard.
Golfers Valued $7,500-$7,900
- Rory Sabbatini – $7,900
- Corey Conners – $7,800
- Ian Poulter – $7,700
- Charles Howell III – $7,600
- Pat Perez – $7,500
- Ryan Moore – $7,500
The pickings in this tier are awfully slim this week, so DFS contestants may opt to spend a little more in one area and go a bit cheaper on another player instead of taking someone in this price range. But if you are down to your last spot and have the money to spend, Corey Conners is a great option to fill up the remainder of the budget. There’s no questioning how well of a ball-striker he’s been, as he finished the 2019 season 9th in Strokes Gained – Tee-to-Green and picked up right where he left off with two very strong ball striking performances at the Sanderson and the Safeway Opens. His putting, however, is so up and down and creates huge variances with his performances week to week. Given that this is a no cut event, Conners can afford to have a poor putting performance one round without the worry he’d miss the weekend, and as long as the ball striking is as good as it’s been he should deliver a solid finish for a DFS lineup.
Ryan Moore isn’t the sexiest name to throw into a DFS lineup, but he almost always provides a pretty safe floor with his ball striking week to week. Over his last five tournaments he’s gained about a stroke per round on the field tee-to-green, but like Corey Conners his results have been driven by how well he’s putt. Moore broke out of his funk on the greens in Las Vegas two weeks ago, and if that carries over to this week he should be plenty useful in DFS Lineups.
Bottom of the Barrel (Golfers <$7,500)
Abraham Ancer – $7,400: It’s been a rough go of it for Ancer over his last two tournaments and enters the CJ Cup on the heels of consecutive missed cuts. It looked like Ancer was really going to break out after a good showing in the FedEx Cup playoffs, but it’s been a rocky start to begin the new season. Call it a hunch that Ancer rights the ship a bit and regresses back towards the mean this week. Ancer has shown to be a solid ball striker over the last year on the PGA Tour, and if he can scrape together an average putting week he should be able to bounce back.
Ryan Palmer – $7,200: Palmer has a similar issue as Corey Conners as he’s one of the more underrated ball strikers in the field but often sees his performances suffer because of his poor putting. Palmer comes into the event ice cold on the greens and hasn’t had a tournament where he posted positive strokes gained with his putter since the RBC Canadian Open. Despite the woes, he still has managed to make five of six cuts, and without the fear of missing the cut at the CJ Cup he can afford to have a bad round on the greens and still produce a good finish.
Others To Consider: Joel Dahmen ($7,100), Harold Varner III ($7,100), Luke List ($7,000), Matt Jones ($6,500)