Each week, including this week’s 2018 CJ Cup at Nine Bridges, Golf News Net offers daily fantasy (DFS) golf advice, picks, lineups and tips for DraftKings PGA Tour games, scrutinizing the pricing model and looking for players who will perform best in both guaranteed prize pool (GPP) events and cash games.[s2If !is_user_logged_in()]
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2018 CJ Cup at Nine Bridges preview
The PGA Tour continues in Asia this week with the second CJ Cup at Nine Bridges on Jeju Island in South Korea. Last year, this tournament was largely marked by wind. After the first round, par was hard to crack for much of the field, with Justin Thomas prevailing over Marc Leishman, while Cameron Smith finished in third place.
This week, it looks like the first round will be windy and the remaining days will be calmer. This is great for scoring, of course, and the golf course should be generous in benign conditions. The landing areas are pretty wide, and players can pick apart the golf course if they play with confident aggression. The greens are tricky and require touch to finish off good tee-to-green play.
Also, a quick update: With the new PGA Tour season in swing, we’ve locked off our GNN+Forebucks tools for only GNN+Forebucks members, which we were previewing for all GNN Plus members through the end of the last PGA Tour season. If you remain a GNN Plus member, you’ll still have access to this content, our searchable results database and top-15 trends. However, I’d highly encourage you to look at becoming a GNN+Forebucks member, as I’m going to be improving and expanding our tools in the coming weeks to build on our successful Course Fit picks.
2018 CJ Cup at Nine Bridges DraftKings picks
Each week, we’ll offer players in 3-5 buckets of pricing so as to offer some mix-and-matching with your lineups based on our recommendations.
Recent PGA Tour Trends
We start by looking at the recent past, back at players who have finished inside the top 15 in the last five individual PGA Tour events.
Event Finish History
Here are the players who finished in the top 15 in this event last year, in the event’s only year at this venue:
- 1. Justin Thomas
- 2. Marc Leishman
- 3. Cameron Smith
- 4. Whee Kim
- T5. Scott Brown
- T5. Brian Harman
- T5. Anirban Lahiri
- T5. Luke List
- T5. Jamie Lovemark
- T5. Pat Perez
- T11. Byeong Hun An
- T11. Rafa Cabrera Bello
- T11. Jason Day
- T11. Patrick Reed
- T15. Lucas Glover
- T15. Branden Grace
- T15. Ian Poulter
- T15. Chez Reavie
It seems to me the best way to use Strokes Gained data is to give a sense of a course fit. My working theory is a player is a course fit — or a potential course fit, at least — if their Strokes Gained breakout when they finish in the top 25 is similar to the average for top-25 finishers at this week’s event. (This week, I’d say top 15 finish.)
Of course, current form then informs thinking around these possible course fits. However, in concept, many of these names make some sense and help narrow down a potential list of golfers.
Unfortunately, we don’t have strokes gained for this event. The PGA Tour doesn’t keep track of them in the Asian Swing. That means we’re kind of left working on past player performance as our best idea for course fit, particularly since this is a limited-field, no-cut event.
2018 CJ Cup at Nine Bridges DraftKings recommendations
$10,000 and up
We have five players in this group, and I think you can feel good with any of the players. However, I would look particularly toward Hideki Matsuyama and Marc Leishman. Leishman may be tired from winning. Matsuyama, meanwhile, has been a stud again.
We have 17 players in this group, and I always love building your team in this range. I like Sungjae Im at the low end. This is in his home country, yes, but his ballstriking is just phenomenal. Let’s stick with Kevin Na, Brandt Snedeker, Paul Casey, Ben An and Cameron Smith.
DraftKings basically breaks the rest of the field in half at the $7,000 mark. Chesson Hadley bumps up dramatically in price, but he’s still worth it. CH3 is a winner, and I like Ian Poulter. Si Woo Kim is a compelling wild card, and I remain a Beau Hossler fan.
Below or at $7,000
We’re looking for bargains in this range, and I like Stewart Cink here. Brendan Steele is worth a pick, and you could see Jimmy Walker doing well. Nick Watney showed some positive signs last week.
My primary DraftKings lineup
- Hideki Matsuyama – $10,400
- Byeong-hun An – $8,700
- Brandt Snedeker – $8,500
- Chesson Hadley – $7,800
- Ian Poulter – $7,600
- Stewart Cink – $7,000