What an incredible finish to the BMW Championship. A Thursday-Friday slog filled with bogeys and mishaps paved the way for incredible excitement in the form of back to back 45+ foot putts from Dustin Johnson and Jon Rahm with Rahm leaving Illinois victorious. The ending hoopla upstaged an amazing weekend from Rahm, one in which he shot 66-64 just to put himself in a position to steal the victory from DJ. Still, Johnson enters the Tour Championship with the top ranking, both in the world and the FedEx Cup standings.
Only 30 players are competing and there is no cut. Because of Labor Day, the tournament runs from Friday to Monday, and the Jock MKT IPO is open on Thursday from 10am – 9pm ET. Jock MKT will not take the preset leaderboard into account, and scoring will only depend on the actual strokes this weekend. The only difference is the winner of the actual Tour Championship gets the traditional 5 point Jock MKT bonus, even though they may not have accumulated the most points in Jock MKT.
The Championship will be played at East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta. Traditionally less difficult that Olympia but more difficult than Boston, there will likely be plenty of shuffling among the leaders in spite of the opening standings.
East Lake is a Donald Ross course, just like Detroit GC (Rocket Mortgage Classic) and Sedgefield (Wyndham Championship). In the past, there has been a strong crossover between the results at East Lake and Sedgefield, so that is something to note. Otherwise, this course does not particularly favor players of a particular style: everyone has a chance to score.
Here are the Fair Value Rankings among the field and who looks like they could outperform their IPO pricing:
Dustin Johnson ($9.07)
DJ lost an absolute heartbreaker last week. In disbelief, the look on his face said it all after Rahm sunk an unimaginable putt in the playoff. He has led each of the last 3 tournaments after 54 holes and will be chomping at the bit to secure his first-ever Tour Championship.
Webb Simpson ($6.30)
The only golfer in the field who didn’t compete at Olympia, Simpson only dropped 2 places in the Fedex Cup standings by not playing and is completely fresh heading into this week. Both his wins this season have come on courses with Bermuda Greens and he has the most SG at Sedgefield among players in the field with at least 3 tournaments played there. Webb can really make a run here.
Xander Schauffele ($5.99)
The X-Man has scuffled of late, finishing T25 in each playoff week, but he has never finished outside the top 10 at East Lake in three career starts. Buy Schauffele’s dip and enjoy the sale on one of the most talented players in the field.
Tony Finau ($4.50)
Finau was my favorite pick last week and his Sunday surge (65, second-lowest single-round total at Olympia) gives me confidence in his potential this weekend. The most difficult holes at East Lake will be seven long par 4s measuring over 450 yards and Finau has the most SG on such holes since the restart.
Sungjae Im ($2.84)
Have not been on Sungjae in a while, but I love his chances this week. The Bermuda grass greens will neutralize most players putting, Im’s greatest shortcoming and in terms of all other skills, he is far better than his price tag suggests. Not to mention, he is second among the field in all-time True SG at Sedgefield.