The Honda Classic: Tournament notes & best bets

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

PGA TOUR

LAST TOURNAMENT: The Players Championship (Justin Thomas)

THIS WEEK

The Honda Classic, Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., March 18-21
Course: TPC Sawgrass (Par 70, 7,125 yards)
Purse: $7 million (Winner: $1.26M)
Defending Champion: Sungjae Im
FedEx Cup leader: Bryson DeChambeau


HOW TO WATCH

    • TV: Thursday, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. ET (Golf Channel); Thursday-Friday, 2-6 p.m. ET (Golf Channel); Saturday, 1-3 p.m. (Golf Channel), 3-6 p.m. (NBC); Sunday, 1-3 p.m. (Golf Channel); 3-6 p.m. (NBC)
    • PGA Tour Live: Thursday-Friday, 7:30 a.m.-6 p.m; Saturday-Sunday, 7:15 a.m.-3 p.m. (Featured Groups), 3 p.m.–6 p.m. (Featured Holes)
Adam Scott
Adam Scott. (Thomas J. Russo-USA TODAY Sports)

NOTES

  • PGA National features the stretch from Nos. 15-17 known as the “Bear Trap,” the fourth-hardest three-hole stretch on the Tour since 2007. It was named after Jack Nicklaus, who reimagined the course originally designed by Tom and George Fazio.
  • Im will defend his maiden PGA Tour victory. His 6-under par score was tied for the second highest to win at the Honda Classic since it moved to PGA National in 2007 and the highest on Tour in a non-major since the 2016 Farmers Insurance Open. Last year’s event was the first non-major on Tour since 1996 without any players posting a score of 5-under or better in any single round.
  • Daniel Berger withdrew Wednesday due to a rib injury. He had been the highest-ranked player in the field at No. 15.
  • Former major champion Martin Kaymer is in the field on a sponsors exemption, as is APGA mini-tour star Kamaiu Johnson and Chase Koepka, the younger brother of Brooks Koepka.
  • Former U.S. Open champion Gary Woodland, Scott Piercy and Doc Redman withdrew following positive COVID-19 tests.

BEST BETS

  • Joaquin Niemann (+1200 by DraftKings) is the highest-ranked player in the field in the FedEx Cup rankings at No. 12. He has made 13 consecutive cuts.
  • Im (+1000) is coming off a T17 at The Players and has finished no lower than T32 in his past six starts.
  • Adam Scott (+2000) was the 2016 champion and has made this a semi-regular stop on his schedule as he makes his ninth event start.
  • Lee Westwood (+2000) has consecutive runner-up finishes after holding 54-hole leads. He also finished T4 last year.
  • Chris Kirk (+3500) was in contention before fading with a 79 on Sunday last week. He has a T2 and a T8 in six starts in 2020.
  • Mackenzie Hughes (+6600) finished solo second last year after closing with consecutive 66s, the lowest total in the field over the weekend.
Joaquin Niemann
Joaquin Niemann. (Mike Watters-USA TODAY Sports)

NEXT WEEK

World Golf Championships – Dell Technologies Match Play, Austin, Texas

LPGA Tour

LAST TOURNAMENT: LPGA Drive On Championship (Austin Ernst)
THIS WEEK: OFF.
Race to the CME Globe leader: Nelly Korda
NEXT EVENT: Kia Classic, Carlsbad, Calif, March 25-28


Champions Tour

LAST TOURNAMENT: Cologuard Classic (Kevin Sutherland)
THIS WEEK: OFF
Charles Schwab Cup leader: Sutherland
NEXT TOURNAMENT: Chubb Classic, Newport Beach, Calif., April 16-18

–Field Level Media (@FieldLevelMedia)