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10/19/2015

The impact made by the Shriners Hospital for Children is incredible. A non-profit organization, the Shriners have a mission for helping kids receive the medical care and attention they desperately need, often times doing so for free. Their burn centers are among the best in the nation and their work for kids is notable.

The children in the hospital are the stars this week and the money raised to help this foundation is the true mission.

No JT though anymore, which is sad.

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Ended in 2012

Shriners Field

Here’s the full field.

Good news on the field.

Course

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When the pros pull into the parking lot at TPC at Summerlin, scores in the 70s are unacceptable and unwelcome. Last year’s leaderboard, which was topped Sunday evening by Ben Martin, had only 4 scores in the 70s out of 36 scores of the top 9 players.

It’s another one of those birdie bonanza’s we see on the PGA Tour.

Located in the foothills of Las Vegas, the course plays at significant altitude, altitude felt by the players. A par-71 at just over 7,200 yards, it plays shorter and offers players scoring chances through their rounds, particularly at the end. The course was designed by a fellow named Bobby Weed (whom I’ve never heard of).

This tweet from Timothy Frank provides good insights.

View the entire course here on PGATour.com.

News, Notes and Historicals

  • Event founded in 1983, celebrating 32 years
  • When the event was first held, it boasted the highest purse on the PGA Tour at $750,000
  • Originally a 5 round tournament, it was reduced down to a four round event in 2004
  • Last month, a fire to the maintenance shed required the purchasing of all new equipment at TPC Summerlin
  • Ben Martin is looking to play well and start his 2016 season the way he did 2015 again

  • The last time someone went back-t0-back in Las Vegas was Jim Furyk in 1998-1999 (he also won in 1995).
  • This was the site of Tiger Woods’ first win

This is a great recap of Tiger’s first win, and I full endorse this content for the die-hards:

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Last 5 Winners

2014: Ben Martin (Read more here)

2013: Webb Simpson

2012: Ryan Moore

2011: Kevin Na

2010: Jonathan Byrd

This Week’s Picks

Two from the Fairway (Contenders)

Patton Kizzire

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He got married last week, hence his absence at the Frys.com Open last week.

Kizzire’s season last year was pure fire, and I made sure to include his name in our “8 Breakthroughs” post last week. I say he gets that start this week.

No one played better on the Web.com Tour all season last year and he was the rookie to watch coming into the season. With Grillo’s performance last week, it bodes well for the rookies in the field.

Kizzire outplayed Grillo all season last year, aside from the Tour Championship, and I think he sets his best foot forward this week with a top-10 finish.

His birdie conversion rate in 2015 was 36% and he’ll convert on some birdies this week.

Kevin Na

kevin na

Kevin Na’s play last week at the Frys worked his way into a playoff. Let’s forget about this shot, the driver-off-the-deck and move on with the season:

Yikes.

But hey, you’ve gotta give the guy some credit for his guts in trying to pull off the shot to win the tournament. And his play all week was quite good, he looked ready for a second career victory.

Last year, Kevin Na played the 2015 season and ranked 33rd on Tour in Par Breakers, making birdie or better on 21% of his holes played.

If he can finish strong this week, he’ll be set for another solid results. He’s playing well enough.

One from the Rough (Sleeper)

Jason Bohn

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Jason Bohn was in contention last week, in a very good way, until his Jordan-Spieth-right-arm went up and he blasted one into the tents on 18. But he was playing well, and that’s what I would like to focus on.

Bohn’s tracked record in Las Vegas is a good one. In 2014, he was top-20. In 2013, he was a runner-up, second place. In 2012, he was top-10 while Justin Timberlake was still on-site.

I like Jason Bohn a lot this week.

He was 13th on the PGA Tour last year in birdies made and I think he’ll continue to pour more in this week at TPC Summerlin.

The Man in Vegas with the Trophy

Tony Finau

tony finau

 

Here’s where it happens, people. The win is coming and it’s coming this week. Tony Finau will capture that PGA Tour win this week at the Shriners in Las Vegas. Let’s explore why.

Past starts: Well, he’s only made one start here, but it was a top-10 (7th) finish.

Statistics: Last year (aside from his crazy distance), he was 3rd in total birdies, 7th in birdie average and 8th in Par Breakers at 23.43%. The guy pours the ball into the hole and makes a serious number of birdies.

Finau started his PGA Tour career as a 17-year old kid with a world of talent who played cash games against older players. He learned the game gambling and hustling– fitting behavior for Las Vegas.

I like Finau this week, to win.

Follow me on TWITTER: @troy_usgolftv

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