If you’re a PGA DFS player that rostered Viktor Hovland, Jon Rahm or Brooks Koepka (perhaps all three?) for the Masters slate you’re probably happy right now. The trio of golfers are tied for the lead at 7-under par after the tournament’s first round. All three are star golfers that garnered significant ownership on the week long slate, but that should skyrocket for tomorrow’s PGA DFS Round 2 Showdown.
DraftKings is upping their game for the Masters. They’ve increased the prize pool of their usual Round 2 Showdown prize pool to $300,000 with $100,000 of that going to first. There’s a lot on the line, and most the equity is up top, so you’ll want to be sure to have the sharpest fantasy point and ownership projections for tomorrow’s slate. Let’s take a look at some of those numbers.
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Masters DFS Showdown: Viktor Hovland, Brooks Koepka
It’s hard to not look at Hovland and Koepka’s performances and not jump on the bandwagon. Their prices are $8,600 and $7,900, respectively. If you get another -7 out of one or both, you’re sitting on a strong lineup.
However, if you’ve played Round 2 or Round 3 Showdown in the past then you already know that the scoring doesn’t give points for finishing position. Only Round 4 Showdown PGA DFS does. In these middle rounds, you only need to score the most fantasy points, regardless of where the golfer finishes.
If Hovland shoots -3 and finishes ten under par while and Colin Morikawa shoots -6, they would be tied on the leaderboard, but Morikawa would score dramatically more fantasy points. In Round 4, they would be close, since Hovland would still be -10 and get points for having a higher finishing position than Morikawa.
Most PGA DFS players don’t need examples like that. They play on DraftKings all season and probably familiar with the format. However, this is the Masters and there will be more casual players in the GPPs to get in on the big prize pools.
That’s why Stokastic’s PGA ownership projection has Viktor Hovland coming in as the highest owned golfer at 25.7%. Koepka is projecting for 18.4% and Rahm at 21.3%. Eat that ownership at your own risk.
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Hovland comes in as the best value play in his price range, but he is still projecting just a few decimal points ahead of lower owned guys like Cameron Young ($8,400), Sungjae Im ($8,500), Dustin Johnson ($8,700) and Jason Day ($8.800). The same is true for Koepka and the other golfers in the $7k price range and Rahm up at the top.
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In one round of golf, a lot can happen. Just like those three golfers had hot streaks in Round 1, they could go just as cold in Round 2. They’re showing up as poor leverage plays for tomorrow’s PGA DFS Showdown slate.
Golf is a high variance sport. That will be exacerbated tomorrow by the weather conditions at Augusta. The forecast is calling for especially difficult conditions in the afternoon. That’s especially troubling for Hovland and Rahm who have two of the latest tee times tomorrow. The PGA moved up the start of tomorrow’s play by thirty minutes in an attempt to get all the golf in, but there is still a strong possibility that many of the later golfers will be impacted by weather.
Aside from affecting Hovland and Rahm, PGA DFS players might want to consider the tee times of all the golfers in their lineups. If the weather at one time of the day is better than another, it can have the same disparate impact for all those playing. That correlation can be addressed by stacking lineups with golfers that tee off around the same time. In this case, it may be more wise to use golfers in the morning waves before the weather is expected to take a turn for the worse.
The top players will know this, and they may be inclined to stack more. It will certainly give a projection edge if the weather forecasts goes as predicted. On the other hand, it will also increase the risk of duplicating lineups, or having similar combinations of players as large portions of the PGA DFS field. These are all trade offs to consider for tomorrow’s slate.
Regardless of how the weather looks, it seems clear that Hovland is going to be the highest owned golfer. He may be a great play, but he’ll have to repeat his stellar performance, which is an uncommon feat for any golfer.