The Honda Classic – Gambling/DFS Preview 2021

PGA National Golf Club (Champion Course) – Palm Beach, FL

Course Breakdown

Par 70, 7140 yd, 2nd hardest course on the PGA Tour two years ago, coastal track so wind could be a big factor, 28 water hazards so water is a big factor and in play on 15 holes, 78 bunkers, harder than average fairways to hit (~60%), thick rough, very difficult greens to hit (~60%), average size and speed Bermuda greens, greens are elevated and contoured and false fronts, a lot of golfers will go mostly less than driver off the tee (one of lowest driving distance averages on tour at 272 yds vs. 283 average), all four Par 3s (which play very difficult) are between 151-179 yds, 6 of the 12 Par 4s fall between 400-450 yds

Tournament Notes

  • No player since Jack in 1978 has defended his title at the Honda Classic
  • The Bear Trap (holes 15-17) is the 3rd most difficult 3 hole stretch on tour, which will probably decide the winner on Sunday
  • Holes 5-7 here are the 4th most difficult 3 hole stretch on tour
  • 3 of the last 5 winners have a T12 finish here in one of the 2 years before winning
  • 7 of the last 9 winners here have had a finish of T13 or better in the previous year here before the win
  • All of the last 9 winners here had made the cut here before the win (so course history matters a bit)
  • No first round leader has ever won
  • 54 hole leader won here 8 of the last 14 years

Key Stats

SG Approach (over 50% more influence than OTT and ATG), Ballstriking

Main proximity distance range on approach: 175-200 yds (25.6%)

Corollary Courses

  • Waialae Country Club (Sony Open) – Russell Henley, Mark Wilson, Ernie Els, Justin Thomas all won both events
  • Colonial Country Club (Charles Schwab Challenge) – lot of crossover success

Field

Terrible field this week after the schedule move to the week after The PLAYERS

Defending Champion: Sungjae Im (-6)

Runner Up Last Year: MacKenzie Hughes (-5)

One and Done: Joaquin Niemann

Alternate: Sungjae Im

Players

Joaquin Niemann: 10400: +1500 – 1st in SG: T2G, 5th in ballstriking, 3rd in SG: OTT, 19th in approach, 9th in SG: ARG, 21st in short game, 4th in Par 5 scoring, 17th in Par 4 scoring, 10th in driving distance, 4th in opportunities gained, 3rd in DK pts

Cameron Tringale: 9100: +3000 – 7/10 cuts made and he’s having the best year of his career, 6th in approach, 6th in ballstriking, 7th in SG: T2G, 19th in SG: OTT, 11th in opportunities gained, 12th in Par 5 scoring, 26th in Par 4 scoring, 5th in bogie avoidance, 22nd in proximity 200+ yds, 16th in DK pts

Cam Davis: 8600: +3500 – T8 here last year, 10th in approach, 4th in ballstriking, 10th in SG: T2G, 7th in SG: OTT, 9th in driving distance, 5th in Par 4 scoring, 1st in proximity 200+ yds, 1st in DK pts

Keegan Bradley: 8400: +4500 – 3rd in approach, 1st in ballstriking, 2nd in SG: T2G, 12 in SG: OTT, 14th in opportunities gained, 5th in fairways gained, 12th in Par 5 scoring, 11th in proximity 175-200 yds, 20th in proximity 200+ yds, 37th in DK pts (27th over last 50 rounds)

Ryan Moore: 7300: +7500 – 16th in approach, 11th in SG: T2G, 8th in ballstriking, 9th in SG: OTT, 12th in opportunities gained, 4th in fairways gained, 4th in proximity 175-200 yds, 15th in bogey avoidance

Matthew NeSmith: 7300: +10000 – Made cut here last year, 1st in approach, 2nd in ballstriking, 5th in SG: T2G, 20th in SG: OTT, 21st in fairways gained, 35th in opportunities gained, 23rd in Par 5 scoring, 35th in proximity 200+ yds, 26th in bogie avoidance, 30th in DK pts

Chez Reavie: 7000: +10000 – Was fantastic with his irons last week, 9th in approach (3rd over last 50 rounds), 19th in ballstriking (12th over last 50 rounds), 23rd in Par 4 scoring, 33rd in opportunities gained, 31st in fairways gained, 15th in proximity 175-200 yds, 37th in proximity 200+ yds, 10th in SG: T2G over last 50 rounds

Note: All stats are over last 24 rounds unless otherwise noted


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