Golf Glance: Best Bets for Sentry Tournament of Champions

Field Level Media’s Golf Glance provides weekly news and storylines from each of the major North American golf tours.


LAST TOURNAMENT: Mayakoba Golf Classic (Viktor Hovland)

THIS WEEK: Sentry Tournament of Champions, Jan. 7-10
The Plantation Course at Kapalua, Maui, Hawaii (Par 73, 7,596 yards)
Purse: $6.7 million (Winner: $1.34M)
Defending Champion: Justin Thomas
FedEx Cup leader: Dustin Johnson
TV: Thursday-Friday, 6-10 p.m. ET (Golf Channel); Saturday, 6-10 p.m. (Golf Channel); Sunday, 4-6 p.m. (NBC), 6-8 p.m. (Golf Channel)

Dustin Johnson
Dustin Johnson. (Rob Schumacher-USA TODAY Sports)

NOTES: Typically reserved for winners in the previous year, the field was expanded to include anyone who qualified for the Tour Championship. Twenty-eight players qualified via victories, with another 17 qualifying by reaching East Lake. … The 42-player field is the largest in tournament history, but does not include No. 4 Rory McIlroy and No. 10 Tyrrell Hatton, who opted not to play. Jim Herman is not in the field after testing positive for COVID-19.

Johnson and No. 2 Jon Rahm will compete for the first time since the Masters in mid-November. … Rahm will play his first event since signing a deal to play Callaway clubs and balls. … The last four event winners went on to finish in the top five of the FedEx Cup standings. Thomas (2017) is the only one to go on to claim the FedEx Cup. … Geoff Ogilvy (2010) is the last player to successfully defend a Tournament of Champions title. … Sergio Garcia is in the event for the first time since 2006. … The field includes seven first-time entrants: Abraham Ancer, Viktor Hovland, Sungjae Im, Jason Kokrak, Carlos Ortiz, Scottie Scheffler and Richy Werenski.

Viktor Hovland
Viktor Hovland. (Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports)

BEST BETS: Johnson (+650 by DraftKings) is coming off a six-week break, but so are several of the eight top-10 players in the field. He has finished in the top six in seven consecutive starts, including his win at the Masters, and is a two-time event winner. … Thomas (+750) is also a two-time winner. He is coming off a solo fourth at the Masters followed by a T12 at Mayakoba and a win at the PNC Championship while paired with his father. … Rahm (+800) is debuting new clubs, but said he recently shot a 59 in Arizona with the new set. He has two wins among six top-10s in his past 10 starts.

Xander Schauffele’s (+1000) most recent victory came in this event two years ago, but he also lost in a playoff along with Patrick Reed last year. He also posted the lowest score in relation to part at the Tour Championship before finishing fifth at the U.S. Open and second at The CJ Cup before a pair of T17s to finish 2020. … Bryson DeChambeau (+1150) will tee it up for the first time since the Masters. His distance will be a significant advantage on the lengthy Plantation Course, which features wide fairways – but all significant rollouts that can lead to awkward lies.

Bryson DeChambeau
Bryson DeChambeau. (Rob Schumacher-USA TODAY Sports)

NEXT TOURNAMENT: Sony Open, Jan. 14-17


LAST TOURNAMENT: CME Group Tour Championship (Jin Young Ko)
NEXT TOURNAMENT: Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions, Jan. 16-19

Champions Tour

LAST TOURNAMENT: Charles Schwab Cup Championship (Kevin Sutherland)
NEXT TOURNAMENT: Mitsubishi Electric Championship at Hualalai, Jan. 18-24

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