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Golf

Waste Management Open Preview

The Wast Management Phoenix Open tees off on Thursday January 31st and runs until Sunday February 3rd at TPC Scottsdale in Scottsdale, AZ (this is Super Bowl Sunday). WMO is also known as The People Open.

  • Purse: $7,100,000
  • Winners Share: $1,278,000

TV Schedule

  • Thursday 1/31/19: Coverage begins 1:00 PM MST – 5:00 PM MST on Golf Channel
  • Friday 2/1/19: Coverage begins 1:00 PM MST – 5:00 PM MST on Golf Channel
  • Saturday 2/2/19: Coverage beings 11:00 AM MST – 1:00 PM MST on Golf Channel
  • Saturday 2/2/19: Coverage resumes 1:00 PM MST – 4:00 PM MST on NBC
  • Sunday 2/3/19: Coverage beings 11:00 AM MST – 1:00 PM MST on Golf Channel
  • Sunday 2/3/19: Coverage resumes 1:00 PM MST – 4:00 PM MST on NBC

 

Whose Teeing Off

This is the third tournament in the “West Coast Swing” of the tour season and the past few years this tournament has seen bigger and bigger names join the field. Defending champ Gary Woodland is back, Phil Mickelson, Justin Thomas, Jimmy Walker, Xander Schauffele, Tony Finau, Hideki Matsuyama, and Rickie Fowler will all be apart of the field.

Gary Woodland at 2018’s WM Open

Recent History

Recent winners have included Phil back in 2013 where he shot -28 under, what lucky shit. He tied the course record with that one. Brooks Koepka won in 2015, Hideki Matsuyama went back to back in 2016-2017 and Gary Woodland won this tournament last year.

The past three tournaments have gone into a playoff to decide the winner, and in ’14 and ’15 the winner only won by one stroke. This is a fun tournament to watch on Sunday, before the Super Bowl obviously. Some big names have been runner up in those years also, Bubba Watson finished runner up in ’14 and ’15, Hideki finished runner up in ’15 as well, Rickie Fowler finished second in ’16, and Webb Simpson finished second here in ’17.

All the winner of this tournament, besides Phil Mickelsons lucky 28 under, have finished between -15 or -18. I would look for the winning score to be close to -20 this year.

The Course

TPC Scottsdale was designed by Jay Morrish and Tom Weiskopf in 1986 and was redesigned by Weskopf in 2014.

The course is a Par 35 on the front, Par 36 on the back with a Par 71 total played at 7,261 yards. It has a rating of 74.6 and 142 slope rating for us bogey golfers. The Par 3’s on the course average 188 yards, Par 4’s average 440 yards, and Par 5’s average 556 yards. Here is a look at the score card for the 18. 

TPC Scottsdale Front 9TPC Scottsdale back 9

Hole #16

The 163 yard Par 3 is one of the most famous hole in golf.  It needs no explanation, just some videos of what it’s like in there. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hole #15

15 is a 583 yard Par 5 that has water on the left hand side, all the way up to and around the green.  It creates a cool “island” like green the players have to deal with.  With a good tee shot, guys can get there in two and go for the eagle putt.  This will be a big hole in determining who can win and steal a few strokes with an eagle during the week. 

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Hole  #6

A 432 yard Par 4 that has the most bunkers on the course.  It’s got 5 bunkers on the right and left hand sides that are anywhere from 280 to 325 yards off the team.  Expect a lot of balls to end up here during the week. Then from those bunkers. there are two more surround the green on the left and right sides. 

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Intangibles

Clubhouse looks like where Kevin Spacey is doing his rehab.

As I said in my PGA Tour preview, this is going to be the third in a row I will be attending the WMO. This is, by far the most fun tournament on the schedule if you are a person who is a casual golf viewer and likes to drink copious amount of alcohol. This place on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday is just one big party, I don’t know what the percentage of people is that are actually watching golf but I would say its under around 40% of the people there the first three days. Hole #16 is obviously wild, but there’s a nice little margarita tent that over looks hole #12, beer vendors are everywhere, its just a great time. However, if you are going to attend this tournament I would recommend going on Thursday or Friday. Last year 104,375 people attend Thursday, 191,400 on Friday, and then 216,818 on Saturday. It was nearly impossible to walk around (at least where we were) for the first hour or two where we were on Saturday last year. So if you don’t like huge crows, I suggest going on Thursday and Friday. If you are a hardcore golf fan, and don’t care about getting home to see the Super Bowl then Sunday is the day to go. 2018 Sundays attendance? 64,273. If you happen to be a the tournament on Friday this year, look for the 6 guys walking around in the same peach Hawaiian shirts and come say hi.

The Birds Nest at WMO

The WMO also offers up the Birds Nest after the golfing is done. Starting Wednesday night and going through Saturday night there are concerts on site. This year you can go see Old Dominion, Midland (fuck yeah), and Brandon Lay on Wednesday Night. Michael Ray, Lee Brice, Jake Owen on Thursday Night. Snoop Dogg and The Chainsmokers on Friday night. On Saturday night they have Justin Mylo, Dj Vice, Martin Garrix (no idea who any of those guys are).

Monday and Tuesday practice rounds and free general admission access. Wednesday there is also a Pro-Am that starts at 8:30 AM. Some guys set to play are Michael Phelps, Bruce Arians, Greg Maddux, Jake Owen, Patrick Peterson, and Justin Verlander.

It’s the end of January, start of February. I am from Wisconsin, its nipple hurting cold here and it’s sunny and warm in Arizona. That’s enough reason to go see a golf tournament for me. 

Picks

One & Done: Matt Kuchar

I’ll take Matt Kuchar here.  He’s played well early on and has a good track record here. I won’t want to use a big gun this early and Kuchar seems like a safe pick here that could easily win this tournament.  The other choices I would easily consider here are Matsuyama, Fowler, and Mickelson. We’ll keep a running tab of the one & done picks at the bottom of this section each week. 

Odds:  Daniel Berger (+6800) & Martin Laird (+9000)

Berger has finished 11th, and 7th the past two years and was also 10th in 2015.  Berger missed the cut last week but finished 12th the week before.  He’s a good young player who is waiting to break out. Laird has a great track record at this tournament, he has finished 9th, 7th, and 5th in three tries the past four years. 

DFS Team (Draft Kings):

Team 1

  • Rickie Fowler ($9,400)
  • Matt Kuchar ($9,200)
  • Daniel Berger ($8,200)
  • Brent Snedeker ($8,100)
  • Matt Laird ($7,600)
  • Si-Woo Kim ($7,500)

Team 2

  • Hideki Matsuyama ($10,700)
  • Phil Mickelson ($9,300)
  • Keegan Bradley ($7,800)
  • Matt Laird ($7,600)
  • Brendan Steele ($7,400)
  • Harold Varner III ($7,200)
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