2016 Honda Classic Golf Preview and Picks
The 2016 PGA Honda Classic comes our way from Florida this week – the “Bear Trap” and PGA National will welcome 144 of the world’s best. PGA National was the most challenging par 70 in a non-major last season.
PGA 2016 Honda Classic
When: February 25 – 28, 2016
Where: PGA National Champion Course, Palm Beach Gardens, Florida
Purse: $6,100,000 – Winning Share: $1,098,000
Defending Champ: Padraig Harrington
Updated Sportsbook Bonuses For Today
11 of the top 20 players in the world will tee it up this week looking for the winner’s share of the 1.1 million first prize.
So who should we be keeping our eye on this week?
Let’s take a look.
2016 PGA Honda Classic Favorites:
Rory McIlroy +550
Will certainly be motivated to avenge a T20 finish last week that featured a closing round 75.
He posted victory on this track in 2012 and lost in a playoff in 2014 and somehow missed the cut here last year. Rory, outside of one bad round last week is playing some consistently good golf – track history and current form definitely point to a good week.
Rickie Fowler +1200
Is another player that should be motivated ahead of this week – the last time we saw Ricky was in a playoff loss at the WMPO.
He won a couple of weeks prior to that in Abu Dhabi and now has top 5 finishes in his last five tournaments worldwide – impressive. He has been OK on this track – four-for-six with a trio of top 25s, including a tie for seventh in 2012.
Adam Scott +1600
Seems to have gotten over the memory of his long putter and posted a nice T2 finish last week at Riviera – his third runner-up finish in his last six starts overall. He has certainly been knocking on the door for his first win in over a year.
Scott was T12 at this event two years ago and arrives in the best form we’ve seen in the last 18 months.
2016 PGA Honda Classic Contenders:
Hideki Matsuyama +1800
Has been one of the most impressive players on TOUR as of late – last week’s T11 at Riviera followed up a win at the WMPO. His tee-to-green play has been terrific – he is tops on TOUR in that regard – he also sits fourth in adjusted scoring.
Matsuyama withdrew in his only appearance here in 2014 but has the game to make some noise.
Patrick Reed +2000
Love him or hate him Reed has to be on the radar this week. He was last seen finishing T6 at Pebble Beach and now has eighth top 10 in his last 10 starts worldwide dating back to last year.
His results on this track have been OK – T-58 in 2013, T-24 in 2014 and T-7 last year but there is zero doubt that Reed shouldn’t be on leaderboards this week.
Phil Mickelson +2000
Lefty looks like a different guy right now – doesn’t he?
He enters off a runner-up finish at Pebble Beach and now has top 11 finishes in three of his last four starts. He was T17 here a year ago when his form was sketchy – expect better this week.
Branden Grace +2800
Has been very good in the lead-up to this event – T8 or better in his last six starts worldwide including a win in Qatar a month ago. He doesn’t make many starts in North America – this will be his first start in on the continent this year and his first ever appearance at PGA National.
The South African has been as impressive as anyone and is absolutely worth mention this week.
Russel Knox +3300
Has posted a playoff loss (2014) and T-3 finish (2015) in the last two editions of this tournament and already has a win this season – that coming in China in November. He has missed the cut in his last two TOUR appearances however but deserves a mention because of his affinity for this track.
2016 PGA Honda Classic Sleepers (+5000 or higher):
Luke Donald +5500
Has finished inside the top 10 in his last four appearances at PGA National including a runner-up finish in 2008 and a T7 last year. He hasn’t been a fixture on too many leaderboards as of late but is due for a good effort on a track he obviously loves.
Jonas Blixt +8000
Call this one a hunch! He has been good in his last three starts overall after missing five straight cuts. He finished solo third at Pebble Beach and was T6 at the Farmers in his last three starts with a MC at Phoenix sandwiched in there.
His game is well suited for this track – I expect a good week from the Swede.
2016 PGA Honda Classic Picks:
I’m not going to get cute here – Rory McIlroy at +550 is my pick. He is at his home course looking to erase the memory of a brutal Sunday last week in a tournament that was within reach.
A motivated Rory is a dangerous one!
The Sleeper is Luke Donald at +5500. This is a home game for him too and he’s been inside the top 10 in the last four editions of this tournament.
Golf handicapper DAVE B weighs in each week with his top selections. Including top picks and sleepers!
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