PGA: Golf Glance: Tour Championship drama hits East Lake
Field Level Media’s Golf Glance provides weekly news and storylines from each of the major North American golf tours.
LAST TOURNAMENT: BMW Championship (Patrick Cantlay)
THIS WEEK: Tour Championship, Atlanta, Ga., Aug. 25-28
Course: East Lake Golf Club (Par 70, 7,346 yards)
FedEx Cup Bonus Pool: $75M (Champion: $18M)
Defending Champion: Patrick Cantlay
FedExCup Leader: Scottie Scheffler
HOW TO FOLLOW
TV: Thursday-Friday, 1-6 p.m. ET (Golf Channel); Friday, 1-2:30 p.m. (GC), 2:30-7 p.m. (NBC); Sunday, 12-1:30 p.m. (GC), 1:30-6 p.m. (NBC)
Streaming on ESPN+: Thursday-Friday, 11:30 a.m.-6 p.m. ET; Saturday, 12:30-7 p.m.; Sunday, 11:30 a.m.-6 p.m.
NOTES: The top 30 players in the FedEx Cup standings qualified for the season-ending event. Scheffler will begin the event at 10-under par, two shots ahead of Cantlay, four ahead of Xander Schauffele and five ahead of Sam Burns. Seed Nos. 6-10 will start at 4 under; Nos. 11-15 at 3 under; Nos. 16-20 at 2 under; Nos. 21-25 at 1 under; and Nos. 26-30 at even par. … The No. 1 seed entering the Tour Championship has gone on to win the playoffs each of the past two years (Cantlay; Dustin Johnson, 2020). … Hideki Matsuyama holds the longest active streak in qualifying for the Tour Championship each of the past nine seasons. … Ten players in the field qualified for the first time, including rookies Cameron Young and Sahith Theegala. Will Zalatoris qualified but was forced to withdraw due to two herniated discs in his back. He would have started at 7 under.
BEST BETS: Scheffler (+200 at BetMGM) has four victories this year and is seeking to become the second player to win the Masters and the FedEx Cup in the same season (Jordan Spieth, 2014-15). … Cantlay (+350) is trying to become the third repeat FedEx Cup champion and the first to accomplish the feat in consecutive years. … Schauffele (+650) has qualified for East Lake all six seasons on tour. … Rory McIlroy (+900) is seeking to become the first three-time FedEx Cup champion. … Burns (+2200) is one of four players with three or more victories this season. … Jon Rahm (+1200) will begin the tournament seven shots off the lead. He’s coming off a T5 and a T8 the past two weeks and finished second to Cantlay at the Tour Championship last year. … World No. 2 Cameron Smith (+2200) returns after withdrawing before the BMW Championship due to a hip injury.
NEXT TOURNAMENT: Fortinet Championship, Napa, Calif., Sept. 15-18
LAST TOURNAMENT: ISPS Handa World Invitational (Maja Stark)
THIS WEEK: CP Women’s Open, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, Aug. 25-28
Course: Ottawa Hunt and Golf Club (Par 72, 6,546 yards)
Purse: $2.35M ($352,500)
Defending Champion: Jin Young Ko (2019)
Race to the CME Globe leader: Minjee Lee
HOW TO FOLLOW
TV: Thursday-Friday, 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. ET; Saturday, 2:30-5:30 p.m. (GC); Sunday, 1:30-3:30 p.m. (CBS, Paramount+)
Streaming: Sunday, 12:30-1:30 p.m. (NBCSports app)
NOTES: The event returns after a two-year absence due to the COVID-19 pandemic. … The 156-player field will be cut to the top 70 and ties after 36 holes. … Canadian Brooke Henderson won the event in 2018. … Lee leads the tour in official money ($3,736,526), scoring average (69.173) and total strokes gained (2.370). … Lexi Thompson leads the Team USA Solheim Cup standings with 220 points, followed by Jennifer Kupcho (187), who is the only three-time winner on tour this year.
NEXT TOURNAMENT: Dana Open, Sylvania, Ohio, Sept. 1-4
LAST TOURNAMENT: Dick’s Sporting Goods Open (Padraig Harrington)
THIS WEEK: The Ally Challenge, Blanc, Mich., Aug. 26-28
Course: Warwick Hills Golf & Country Club (Par 72, 7,085 yards)
Purse: $2M (Winner: $300,000)
Defending Champion: Joe Durant
Charles Schwab Cup leader: Steven Alker
HOW TO FOLLOW
TV: Friday, 7-9 p.m. ET; Saturday, 8:30-10:30 p.m.; Sunday, 4-6 p.m. (All times Golf Channel)
NOTES: The average winning score over the previous four editions of the event has been 15-under par. … The greens average 5,500 square feet. … Harrington has 10 consecutive top-25 finishes and seven top-3s in his past 11 starts. … Jerry Kelly has won three of his past seven events.
NEXT TOURNAMENT: Ascension Charity Classic, St. Louis, Sept. 9-11
–Field Level Media