Date: October 15th – 18th
Course: Shadow Creek Golf Course
Purse: $9.8MM ($1.8MM to winner)
2020 Winner: Justin Thomas (-20)
Shadow Creek Golf Course — Established in 1990 and designed by Tom Fazio, this 7,560 par 72 course in Nevada played host to the inaugural Tiger vs. Phil matchup. With a course slope of 74.5 and a slope rating of 145, this course was designed by Fazio not to be a typical desert course. Hills and valleys as well as lakes and trees were all put into the land to make it seem more like a southeastern course than one in the desert. The Bent Grass greens are fairly average but feature enough elevation changes to challenge the golfers. Approach shots will be important on this course and those who can position the ball well on the green will thrive.
My Starting 4
Justin Thomas (first selection this year) — New location but I still go with the guy who won two of the three years this tournament has been in existence. Thomas is still among the best golfers on tour right now.
Matthew Fitzpatrick (first selection this year) — Fitzpatrick is top 20 in OWGR, 88th in driving distance and 38th in strokes gained off the tee. He’s been very hot and cold lately with three missed cuts and three top 10 finishes in his last six tournaments.
Matthew Wolff (first selection this year) — Wolff has been on fire as of late with back to back 2nd place finishes (US Open and Shriners Hospitals). Dating back to last season he finished 16th, 44th, 4th, 49th, 12th and 22nd. He’s 2nd on the tour in total strokes gained.
Rory McIlroy (first selection this year) — 4th in OWGR, 5th in total strokes gained, 13th in strokes gained tee to green and he comes into Nevada with back to back 8th place finishes (US Open and Tour Championship).
My Bench 2
Gary Woodland (second selection this year) — Woodland has a strong drive which he will need at Shadow Creek. He is putting well but accuracy has become an issue as of late where he’s among the least accurate off the tee and approaching the green. He had a strong record here at it’s previous location and I think he has a game that can fit well at the new location.
Ryan Palmer (first selection this year) — This course is on the longer side, Palmer is 9th in driving distance and he comes into this tournament fresh off a 34th place finish at Shriners Hospitals for Children Open. He’s currently 36th in the OWGR.
Fun Fact: This tournament is typically held
Starting 4: avg finish 42rd (28th percent)
Bench 2: avg finish 59th (40th percent)