PGA: Golf Glance: Rory McIlroy makes PGA National return

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LIV Golf returns to action this week, joining the PGA and LPGA in worldwide play.

PGA TOUR
LAST TOURNAMENT: Mexico Open at Vidanta (Jake Knapp)
THIS WEEK: Cognizant Classic, Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., Feb. 29-March 3
Course: PGA National, The Champion (Par 71, 7,147 yards)
Purse: $9M (Winner: $1.62M)
Defending Champion: Chris Kirk
FedEx Cup Leader: Matthieu Pavon
HOW TO FOLLOW
TV: Thursday-Friday, 2-6 p.m. ET (Golf Channel); Saturday-Sunday, 1-3 p.m. (GC), 3-6 p.m. (NBC)
Streaming (ESPN+): Thursday-Sunday, 6:45 a.m.-6 p.m.
X: @CognizantClassic
NOTES: The event was formerly known as the Honda Classic. The 10th hole at PGA National has been converted from a 508-yard par-4 into a 530-yard par-5. … The top 10 players in the FedEx Cup standings after this event who did not finish in the Top 50 last season will earn spots into next week’s signature event at the Arnold Palmer Invitational. The Aon Swing 5 will be comprised of the next five players earning the most points at this event and last week’s Mexico Open. Finland’s Sami Valimaki, who finished second last week, tops the Aon Swing 5 and has secured his spot at Bay Hill. … Ryan Palmer will make his 500th career PGA Tour start. … Justin Leonard holds the tournament scoring record of 264 set in 2003.
BEST BETS: Rory McIlroy (+750 at BetMGM) is the heavy betting favorite as he makes his first appearance at PGA National since 2018. He won the event in 2012, and is coming off a win in The Match 9 charity event on Monday night. … Cameron Young (+2200) is still seeking his first tour victory as he comes off a T16 at the Genesis. … Eric Cole (+2500) lost to Kirk in a playoff last year en route to becoming the only rookie to qualify for the second leg of the playoffs at the BMW Championship. … Matt Fitzpatrick (+2800) joins No. 2 McIlroy as top-10 players in the field. Fitzpatrick enters the event at No. 9. … Shane Lowry (+3300) has finished in the top-10 each of the past two years at PGA National. … Kirk (+4000) opened 2024 with a win at The Sentry and will be defending his fifth career tour title this week. … Stephan Jaeger (+4000) has two T3s in his past three starts.
NEXT TOURNAMENT: Arnold Palmer Invitational, Orlando, March 7-10; Puerto Rico Open, March 7-10

LPGA Tour
LAST TOURNAMENT: Honda LPGA Thailand, Feb. 22-25 (Patty Tavatanakit)
THIS WEEK: HSBC Women’s World Championship, Singapore, Feb. 29-March 3
Course: Sentosa Golf Club, Tanjong Course (Par 72, 6,775 yards)
Purse: $1.8M (Winner: $270,000)
Defending Champion: Jin Young Ko (2022-23)
Race to the CME Globe leader: Lydia Ko
HOW TO FOLLOW
TV: Thursday-Sunday, 9:30 p.m.-2:30 a.m. ET (All times Golf Channel)
Streaming (Peacock): Thursday-Sunday, 9:30 p.m.-2:30 a.m. ET
X: @HWWCGolf
NOTES: This is the second of three events on the LPGA Tour’s “Asia Swing.” It features a 66-player field competing over 72 holes with no cut. … Jin Young Ko is the two-time defending champion. She is attempting to become the first LPGA player to win an event three consecutive times since Inbee Park won the Women’s PGA Championship from 2013-15. … The event has been played at the Tanjong Course since 2017 after being held at Sentosa’s Serapong Course from 2013-16. … Sentosa was founded in 1974 by then-Singapore Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew. … Mone Inami, who has 13 career JLPGA titles, is the lone 2024 LPGA Tour rookie in the field.
NEXT TOURNAMENT: Blue Bay LPGA, China, March 7-10.

PGA Tour Champions
LAST TOURNAMENT: Trophy Hassan II (Ricardo Gonzalez)
THIS WEEK: OFF
Charles Schwab Cup leader: Steven Alker
NEXT TOURNAMENT: Cologuard Classic, Tucson, Ariz., March 8-10

LIV Golf League
LAST TOURNAMENT: Las Vegas (Individual: Dustin Johnson; Team: Smash GC)
THIS WEEK: King Abdullah Economic City, Saudi Arabia, March 1-3
Course: Royal Greens Golf Club (Par 70, 7,048 Yards)
Purse: Individual: $20M (Winner: $4M); Team: $5M (Winner: $3M)
Defending Champion: Individual, Brooks Koepka; Team, Fireballs GC
2024 Leaders: Players, Dustin Johnson; Team, Legion XIII
HOW TO FOLLOW
TV/Streaming: Friday, 3:15 a.m. ET (The CW app, Caffeine, LIVGolf+, YouTube); Saturday-Sunday, 3:15 a.m. ET (The CW, LIVGolf+, YouTube)
X: LIVGolf_League
NOTES: The event’s shotgun start will begin at 3:15 a.m. ET time daily. … Anthony Kim, 38, will play in his first professional event since left Achilles tendon surgery in 2012. The three-time PGA Tour winner will be competing as a wild card entry for the remainder of 2024.
NEXT TOURNAMENT: Hong Kong, March 8-10

–Field Level Media

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