The Waste Management Phoenix Open starts on Thursday, which means we need DraftKings pivot plays today. The course horses like Jon Rahm, Rickie Fowler and Gary Woodland have bubbled-up the projected roster board, which means you may have to look elsewhere to differentiate your DraftKings lineups this week.
Course history, current form, or your favorite golf tout has pumped up the projected ownership for individual golfers throughout the week. This article will look at the projected chalk and pivot in each significant salary range when entering lineups in DraftKings GPPs.
For a full course preview and who I like in the betting market, please refer to the DraftKings Preview and Best Bets articles on DraftKings Playbook. Here are the pivots we should be considering on DraftKings this week.
Projected Popular Golfer: Justin Thomas ($10,800)
Pivot: Webb Simpson ($10,100)
Xander Schauffele ($11,000) was highlighted in last week’s article and played well at his roster percentage, but he shouldn’t be more expensive than Thomas this week. Other than Thomas being one of the best golfers in the world, pricing him below Xander and under $11,000 is probably a big reason why he’s projected to be the highest rostered golfer in this range. Thomas has back-to-back top 3s at TPC Scottsdale over the last two years and objectively is a great play, but going with the defending champ for $700 less could be the way to go this week. Of course, we know Webb’s game sets up well here, but it’s where he’s priced that’s the most attractive. With so much attention on the four golfers priced ahead of him and still above $10,000, most roster constructions seem to be paying for a Rahm or Rory and clicking in the $9,000 range. TPC Scottsdale is about ball-striking, and Webb’s been one of the best to do it, ranking eighth in approach and seventh in opportunities gained over his previous 75 rounds. Simpson has a top 5 in one of his two starts this calendar year and could easily get another one this week.
$8,000 to $10,000 Range
Projected Popular Golfer: Daniel Berger ($9,600)
Pivot: Russell Henley ($8,200)
Other than Berger being a solid player, another possible reason for his projected popularity is how much value there seems to be in the low-$7,000 range. Starting lineups with one of the four top-priced golfers and adding Berger is feasible when someone like Sebastian Munoz is $7,100. If you’re looking to move off the Berger-train this week, a possible contrarian play is Russell Henley at $1,400 cheaper. You don’t need to travel all that way to pivot off the DB chalk, but you won’t find anyone in this entire field who’s better than Henley with their irons, both in the short and long term. Over the previous 100 rounds, Henley ranks at the top in SG: Approach-the-Green. If we zoom in to the past 24 rounds, you guessed it; he still ranks first in the field with his irons. Henley may become more popular as we get closer to tee-off, so if you’re looking for someone to play at an even smaller projected roster percentage, consider Matthew Wolff ($8,700). Wolff burned a lot of us (me included) at Torrey Pines when he withdrew with a hand injury. Even though he couldn’t find a fairway last week, Wolff is one of the best drivers and ranks fourth in SG: Approach-the-Green over his previous 24 rounds. Wolff is still in the field this week as of this article and sets up really nicely here if his injury isn’t too serious.
$7,000 to $8,000 Range
Projected Popular Golfer: Corey Conners ($7,900)
Pivot: Byeong Hun An ($7,300)
Golfers like Sebastian Munoz ($7,100), Henrik Norlander ($7,500) and Sam Burns ($7,700) project to be popular plays this week, but the smooth-swinging Canadian, Corey Conners, could lead all golfers in projected popularity under $8,000. Conners is riding a heater making eight-straight cuts and finishing with three top 10s and two top 20s in that span. The ball-striking has been fantastic, but his projected roster percentage is nearing 20-plus percent, according to Fantasynational.com. Electing to save $600 and rostering Byeong Hun An may allow you to pay up somewhere else and box out a fair amount of lineups if Conners happens to play poorly. Since 2017, An ranks sixth in SG: Total here, with no worse than a 23rd in that timeframe. An is always a risk with how poorly he putts; he lost 8.5 strokes on the greens last week on the South Course. This week is different where putting is not nearly as crucial as approach, and Benny An has gained strokes with his irons in seven of his last eight measured tournaments.
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is reidtfowler) 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 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.
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