GOLF

DraftKings Daily Fantasy Golf Helper: Sony Open in Hawaii

The PGA Tour hops a few islands over for the Sony Open in Hawaii. Webb Simpson is among the 32 golfers from last week's field teeing it up in 2021's first full field event. He is a worthy cornerstone for daily fantasy lineups this week, but can we afford him as the highest priced golfer on DraftKings?

Daily fantasy golf requires a new approach for each and every event.

The course and field change week after week, making no two contests alike. That means you need to refine your approach for each PGA Tour event to try to find golfers who are primed to excel for your daily fantasy golf lineups.

Each week, we have a course primer, and our daily fantasy golf projections and lineup builder can help you get started, but these golfers stand out specifically on DraftKings for the Sony Open in Hawaii at Waialae Country Club.

Key Stats

Key Stats for the Sony Open at Waialae CC
Strokes Gained: Approach
Fairways Gained
Birdies or Better Gained
Bogeys Avoided
Strokes Gained: Par 4s


Let's get to the picks. For details on why these stats stand out this week, check out the course primer.

Stats are from Fantasy National Golf Club and are for golfers in the field over the last 50 rounds.

High-Salaried Studs

Webb Simpson (DraftKings Price: $11,100 | FanDuel Sportsbook Win Odds: +1300) - Simpson leads the way this week in a familiar spot -- slight step down in field strength, strategic course, potentially windy conditions -- and a stone cold lock on DraftKings as a cash game anchor. He's viable in tournaments given his win equity, and the stats tell the story well enough. He is 2nd in bogeys avoided, 4th in strokes gained: par 4s, 13th in birdies or better gained, and 14th in both strokes gained: approach and fairways gained. He missed the cut at the Charles Schawb Challenge in the first event post-COVID layoff, won the following week, and has just three finishes outside the top 20 in the 13 events since.

Collin Morikawa ($10,600 | +1400) - Morikawa was the 54-hole leader at Kapalua before a disappointing even-par 73 finish, thanks to an outlier round where his approach game uncharacteristically escaped him. He lost 2.6 strokes via his approaches, his second worst single round in the past year. He should be able to bounce back here, and as one of the most talented young players in the world getting back out there to play is the best thing for him, especially at a course that should play to his strengths. Morikawa ranks 7th in strokes gained: approach, 13 in fairways gained, 21st in bogeys avoided, 25th in birdies or better gained, and 30th on par 4s.

Daniel Berger ($10,000 | +1600) - Berger found himself in contention once again last week at the Tournament of Champions thanks to a disappointing Sunday effort, but like Simpson he has looked the part for the past year and really fits Waialae. He is first in strokes gained on par 4s, second in birdies or better gained, fifth in strokes gained: approach, and sixth in bogeys avoided. Since finishing T38 here last year, he has just one finish worse than that on his record.

Mid-Salaried Options

Abraham Ancer ($9,400 | +3000) - Ancer has been a model of consistency over the past year, making the cut in all but one event since the Asian swing in fall 2019. He was outmatched at the massive Kapalua last week and should be more at home here. His tee-to-green game was never better than coming out of the COVID layoff in June, and while he hasn't reached those heights since he closed 2020 with two solid finishes at The Masters (T13) and the Mayakoba Golf Classic (T12) that are unmeasured by ShotLink.

Kevin Kisner ($8,800 | +2800) - Kisner is something of a poor man's Simpson. He doesn't have the win equity, having last won a stroke play event in 2017. That such a win came at one of our comp courses in Colonial is no surprise. Kisner also has top 10 finishes at RBC Heritage and the RSM Classic, including a runner up at the latter to close out his 2020 season. Kisner won't get left in the dust off the tee at Waialae, and he ranks 7th on par 4s, 9th in birdies or better gained, 16th in bogeys avoided, 24th in strokes gained: approach, and 30th in fairways gained. He was 4th here last year, his third top-5 finish at the Sony Open.

Russell Henley ($8,700 | +3000) - Henley will pop in any model that prioritizes ballstriking, and we can expect him to be among the most rostered golfers on DraftKings this week. He ranks 1st in strokes gained: approach and bogeys avoided, 2nd on par 4s, and 10th in fairways gained. Before missing the cut at the Mayakoba Golf Classic, he had eight straight top-30 finishes including four top 10s. He won the Sony Open in 2013 and has top 10s on his resume at both the RBC Heritage and RSM Classic.

Low-Priced Options

Emiliano Grillo ($7,900 | +6000) - Rather quietly Grillo has been in solid form of late, missing just 1 cut in his last 11 events and most recently posting a T18 at the RSM Classic and T8 at the Mayakoba. He is 8th in strokes gained: approach, 11th on par 4s, and 25th in bogeys avoided. He has made four cuts in four tries at the Sony, including 21st last year here and 22nd the year before, and at this price, we'll happily take that floor.

Sebastian Munoz ($7,800 | +5000) - Munoz would have had a better showing than his T17 at the TOC had he done better than a 75 on Thursday, following that flub with rounds of 66, 67, and 68. That will hopefully signal a turning of the tide, as he had missed the cut in his two prior events. He lost 2.9 strokes putting just in that first round and had lost 4.1 strokes putting in his first round at Sea Island. With a T19 at the Masters, T14 at the Zozo Championship, and T9 at THE CJ CUP before that and top 20s in all three legs of the FedEx Cup Playoffs, Munoz has some sneaky long term form heading into this week.

Si Woo Kim ($7,600 | +6500) - Si Woo returns having last played at The Masters after missing the cut at the Houston Open, coming in off six straight rounds without breaking 70. In the two events prior he has gone seven of eight rounds under 70. We know he can catch fire with his irons, and to his credit, he's played well over the years in windy conditions. The Bermuda putting is a concern, but overall he's gained with the short stick in 7 of his last 11 events, and with just 2 missed cuts in his last 15 events he also provides some unexpected safety in this range.

Matthew NeSmith ($7,400 | +9000) - Nesmith has been flushing it of late, second only to Henley in strokes gained: approach over his last 50 rounds and with top 20s in three of his last four events. He's a streaky putter who played the best golf of his young career in the wraparound last year and looks primed to continue the trend. He's also 22nd in bogeys avoided and 27th on par 4s.

Brendan Steele ($7,100 | +15000) - Steele was the runner up here last year, having suffered a long layoff between shots while his playing partner Ryan Palmer navigated an out of bounds situation on the 72nd hole. That Steele nearly made the 30-foot snake to win outright shows his resolve, and after a disappointing end to the season he needed the month off as much as anyone. He's been striking it fine, as he ranks 14th in strokes gained: approach, but he's lost strokes putting in six straight measured events, including more than 1.9 strokes lost in each of his last four measured events. He's primed for a comeback at a course where he rolled it well last year and very well could have won.

Bargain Basement

Hudson Swafford ($6,800 | +20000) - Slim pickings at the bottom of the price pool this week, which should make it difficult to justify Simpson and another top golfer. Swafford at least flashed his upside with a win in the Dominican Republic, and he's shown well here in the past with six made cuts in seven tries and three finishes inside the top 10.


Mike Rodden is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Mike Rodden also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username mike_rodden. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in his articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.