Fantasy Tip Sheet: Hyundai TOC

Steve Stricker
Steve Stricker ( Getty Images )

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Wasn't it just yesterday that the PGA Tour season was wrapping up?

Well, the pros are back at it this week in Kapalua, where Jonathan Byrd won the 2011 title in a playoff over Robert Garrigus.

Can Byrd give the tournament another repeat winner? Or will a young gun such as Nick Watney steal the show? Or maybe Bubba Watson, who recently shot a 58 on his home course?

Welcome back to our weekly panel of fantasy experts, where we will give you our best advice based on the Golfweek/Sagarin Performance Index, with one player in the top 50 and one outside the top 50.

Our staff picks for the Hyundai Tournament of Champions . . .

Rank Winner Wild Card
Rude Webb Simpson

Is he America's best player at the moment

Jonathan Byrd

Stuart Appleby won in consecutive years. Geoff Ogilvy won in consecutive years. Why not Byrd?

Martin Bubba Watson

His only highlight here last year was that big-bending driver off the deck that became one of 2011's most memorable shots. He finished 25th in the 32-man field. Watson is playing well entering this week, though. He recently shot 58 in a casual round at his home course and finished 12th, 12th and sixth in his final three events of last year (Australian Open, Australian PGA and Chevron World Challenge).

Bryce Molder

Could this be a big year for Bryce, now that that first win is out of the way? He closed 2011 well, finishing no worse than 11th in his final three PGA Tour starts, including his Open victory. Molder finished third in strokes gained-putting last year.

McCabe Nick Watney

Now that he's developed an affinity for surfing, he's really going to feel at home on the island of Maui. Seems primed to take an even bigger step forward in his career.

Keegan Bradley

Hard to believe he sits 108th in the Sagarin, but with the Plantation Course being a long-hitter's paradise, it's easy to love Bradley's chances here.

Miceli Steve Stricker

It's the first week, but you have to believe that all the time off will make the difference for Stricker, he's been close before at Kapalua, why not this week?

Keegan Bradley

Played well in the Shark Shoot Out just a couple of week ago and had a great 2011 campaign, no reason he won't take advantage of the small field this week.

Ringler Steve Stricker

Currently ranked No. 2 in the Golfweek/Sagarin Performance Index, Stricker has nine top 10s in 14 career starts in Hawaii. That's enough for me to pick him against a short field and a field with almost half the players ranked outside the top 100.

Mark Wilson

Mark Wilson Wilson's last trip to Hawaii produced a victory when he won the 2011 Sony Open in Hawaii.

Golfweek/Sagarin Performance Index

  • 2. Steve Stricker
  • 6. Webb Simpson
  • 12. Nick Watney
  • 14. K.J. Choi
  • 16. Bubba Watson
  • 23. Gary Woodland
  • 28. Bill Haas
  • 31. David Toms
  • 33. Aaron Baddeley
  • 44. Martin Laird
  • 48. Rory Sabbatini
  • 58. Mark Wilson
  • 79. Ben Crane
  • 80. Lucas Glover
  • 91. D.A. Points
  • 106. Kevin Na
  • 108. Keegan Bradley
  • 117. Jonathan Byrd
  • 128. Chris Kirk
  • 133. Jhonattan Vegas
  • 137. Bryce Molder
  • 147. Johnson Wagner
  • 154. Brendan Steele
  • 173. Scott Piercy
  • 220. Sean O'Hair
  • 226. Harrison Frazar
  • 239. Michael Bradley
  • 273. Scott Stallings readers: We value your input and welcome your comments, but please be respectful in this forum.