Primetime Golf

Everyone’s gettin’ paid

We head to China for one of the season’s WGC events, a favorite among players because the no-cut format means makin’ money! The elite field at the WGC-HSBC Champions will have 16 of the top 20 players in the world rankings and will be headlined by world number 2 Dustin Johnson and world number 3 Rory McIlroy. A few of the notables who will not be in attendance include the world number 1 and oft-injured Jason Day, who is nursing his latest back injury, as well as world number 4 Jordan Spieth (resting) and Justin Rose (back injury).  

What happened in 2015

Entering the week as 85th in the world rankings, Russell Knox solidified his place among the game’s best by earning his first PGA Tour title. The Scotland native fired a final round 68 to win by two shots over red-hot Kevin Kisner. The win proved to be a springboard for Knox as just one year later, Knox is now ranked 20th in the world after a breakout season.

What to watch for

Here are a few storylines to watch at golf’s biggest fall event…

Testing...

Rumors have Rory McIlroy set to debut a new driver, the Taylormade M2, as well as the club manufacturer’s fairway wood. The last time we saw McIlroy, he was playing like the world’s best, putting together some brilliant performances at the Ryder Cup and winning 2 of the final 3 events in the FedEx Cup to win the playoff series and pad his bank account.  

DJ’s quest for the top spot

With a win, Dustin Johnson could complete his ascension to the top and take the world’s number 1 ranking from the injured Jason Day. The 2015-2016 season was a breakout one for Johnson, with his improved wedge play making him an unstoppable force.

Rickie Fowler or Richard Flower? 

About this time last year, the biggest debate in golf was whether or not Fowler belonged among the game’s elite players (Day, Spieth & McIlroy). One disappointing season later, and Fowler looks like he’s just another guy. This week’s primetime event will serve as Fowler’s first opportunity to prove he belongs with Dustin Johnson and the short-lived big 3.

Bubba looking like an idiot…

What is he doing???

Paulie’s Picks: WGC-HSBC Champions

For the no-cut event, Paulie has some sneaky DraftKings plays and one-and-done picks that he likes in China. Check ‘em out here.

When to tune in? 

For the second week in a row, fans are treated to nighttime golf with coverage starting on the Golf Channel at 10:30 PM EST Wednesday-Saturday. 

Looking to make a name for themselves…

While the stars are in China for the WGC Event, the rest of the PGA Tour is duking it out in Jackson, Mississippi at the Sanderson Farms Championship. Valuable FedEx Cup points are on the line at an event that tends to yield first-time winners, as evidenced by 3 of the last 5 years. 

Last year

Peter Malnati earned the first win of his PGA Tour career by birdieing 5 of his final 12 holes to finish 1 shot ahead of PGA Tour veterans William McGirt and David Toms.

Paulie’s Picks: Sanderson Farms

Paulie had to work overtime this week with two events on the PGA Tour docket. He’s picked out some young guys to roster for DraftKings and some one-and-done picks. Check them out here.

Ask an architect…

Got a question for the experts? We are starting a new series where we field your questions and ask some of golf’s top architects for their answers. Send in your best questions here.

Quick hooks

New PGA Tour event set for South Korea in ‘17.

The Player of the Year race heats up as Ko and Jutanugarn duke it out in Malaysia.

Congratulations to the fried egg’s golf coach, Kiel Alderink, for being named one of Golf Digest’s 40 best golf instructors under 40!

Featured Tweet

Iconic club toss

Last week, Spencer Levin’s club toss in Malaysia brought back memories of Henrik Stenson’s epic heave in this year’s Ryder Cup. Commemorate club chuckers everywhere with the Club Toss from NLU’s #Toursauce collection.

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