After a three-week stint in California, the PGA TOUR heads to Arizona for the Waste Management Phoenix Open. This event will be played at the Stadium Course (par 71, 7,261 yards, POA greens) of TPC Scottsdale, which has been the case since 1987. This is a field of 132 players and there will be a standard top-65 and ties cut following the first 36 holes.
TPC Scottsdale is a world famous desert venue that presents massive POA greens, 67 bunkers and water in play on six holes. After facing multiple courses over the last few weeks that favor accuracy over distance, TPC Scottsdale is the opposite. Elite drivers have flourished at this track and over the last five years, three of the Phoenix Open winners have finished the tournament top-12 in both SG: Off-the-Tee and driving distance.
Strong of-the-tee players should be a priority this week and we also need to be targeting great iron players, despite the huge putting surfaces at TPC Scottsdale. Scottie Scheffler led the field in SG: Approach during his victory at last year’s Phoenix Open, making him the third winner of this event over the last four years to either lead their field or finish runner-up in the metric.
Below, I have featured four of my favorite DraftKings’ value plays for the Waste Management Phoenix Open, that all cost less than $7.5K.
Kevin Yu ($7,300) – Yu has never competed at TPC Scottsdale before, but is a strong match for this desert track that favors bombers. The 25-year-old is one of the best drivers on the PGA TOUR, ranking second in SG: Off-the-Tee and 11th in driving distance over his last 50 rounds. Yu has also made three straight cuts – including two top-10 finishes – and it’s worth noting all three of these events were played at courses that are home to POA greens.
This bodes extremely well with a trip to TPC Scottsdale up next, and Yu is a great bargain at this salary, that could get slept on due to his lack of history at the Phoenix Open.
Kurt Kitayama ($7,200) – Kitayama had an excellent Phoenix debut last season, carding a T23 finish, and returns to TPC Scottsdale in awesome form. The 31-year-old has made six straight cuts, with three top-30 finishes in his last four starts.
Kitayama has collectively gained strokes off the tee and on approach at three consecutive tournaments, and at +260 on the DraftKings Sportsbook, he carries the best odds to finish inside the top-20 this weekend of all the golfers priced under $7.5K for DFS purposes.
Erik Van Rooyen ($7,100) – Van Rooyen finished T20th at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am this past weekend, marking his eighth made cut in a row. During this time, the South African has finished inside the top-25 in all but one start, most notably with a win at the World Wide Technology Championship in November. Furthermore, Van Rooyen has notably gained strokes off the tee at every tournament during this cut streak and has vaulted himself up 117 spots in the world golf rankings thanks to this sensational run.
Van Rooyen finished T50 at last year’s Phoenix Open, but should outdo himself with a much higher finish this weekend.
Luke List ($7,000) – When we exclude his first-round withdrawal from the Rocket Mortgage Classic last July, List has impressively only missed one cut in his last 16 starts. The 39-year-old is coming off a T29 at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am last week, which marked his seventh top-30 finish in his last 10 starts.
Not only is List a terrific driver of the golf ball, ranking 14th in SG: Off-the-Tee and 24th in driving distance over his last 50 rounds, his irons have been tremendous, ranking 18th in SG APP during this time. List has produced a top-30 finish in three of his last six appearances at TPC Scottsdale and is an elite value play at this low price point.
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is Hunta512) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and do not constitute a representation that any particular strategy will guarantee success. All customers should use their own skills and judgment in building lineups. I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.