Power Rankings: Sentry Tournament of Champions

Justin Thomas and Xander Schauffele
Justin Thomas and Xander Schauffele stand on the 18th tee during the third round of the Sentry Tournament Of Champions at the Kapalua Plantation Course on Jan 9, 2021 in Kapalua, Hawaii. (Photo by Gregory Shamus via Getty Images)

The PGA Tour’s 2021-22 season started way back in September but it kicks into high gear this week with the annual Sentry Tournament of Champions at Kapalua’s Plantation course.

The qualifications for this exclusive event are pretty simple: win a tournament during the 2021 calendar year, stretching across two seasons (January to December).

Of the year’s 39 champions, only Rory McIlroy opted out of the event. The field will still include 39 golfers, though, as Xander Schauffele received a special invite for winning gold at the Tokyo Summer Olympics.

Here are the 15 players we like most in the field this week in Maui.

15. Talor Gooch

Talor Gooch
Talor Gooch looks on at the 15th green during the final round of the Desert Classic at the Stadium Course on Jan 20, 2019 in La Quinta, CA. Photo by Donald Miralle/Getty Images

At the RSM Classic, Gooch secured his maiden PGA Tour title by bookending a pair of 64s. The win was a culmination of a red-hot streak in the fall, where he finished T11 or better in five of his six starts… He enters Maui ranked No. 32 in the Official World Golf Rankings – a career best – while holding down the top spot in the FedEx Cup standings.

FedEx: 1
OWGR: 32
Odds: 35-1
Last Six: 1, 60, 11, 5, 11, 4
Best 3 at Kapalua: Debut

14. Abraham Ancer

Abraham Ancer Wins WGC-Fedex-St Jude Invitational
Abraham Ancer reacts after making birdie on the 18th green during the second playoff hole at the FedEx St. Jude Invitational at TPC Southwind on Aug 8, 2021 in Memphis, Tenn. (Photo by Sam Greenwood via Getty Images)

This will be Ancer’s second appearance at the Sentry Tournament of Champions. Last year he opened 70-71 but heated up on the weekend with scores of 69 and 66 to finish T17… The Mexican qualified by winning his maiden title at the WGC-FedEx St Jude event in Memphis… In three PGA Tour starts to the 2022 season, Ancer has posted one top 10 (T7, Mayakoba)… We think he grabs a second top-10 finish this week in Hawaii.

FedEx: 63
OWGR: 17
Odds: 33-1
Last Six: 14, 27, 7, 14, MC, 11
Best 3 at Kapalua: 17 (2021)

13. Brooks Koepka

Brooks Koepka
Brooks Koepka lines up a putt with caddie Ricky Elliott on the 18th green during the third round of the World Golf Championships-Workday Championship at The Concession on February 27, 2021 in Bradenton, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)

Koepka’s 2020-21 season was once again a tale of two types of events: he finished T7, T2, T4, and T6 in the four majors he entered. Yet had more missed-cuts (6) than top-10s (4) in his 15 regular tour starts… The four-time major winner entered four official PGA Tour events in the fall portion of the new season and struggled badly – missing two cuts while finishing T38 and T67 in the other two… Still, he’s Brooks Koepka. And if healthy (physically and mentally), he is easily one of the best in the field.

FedEx: 172
OWGR: 16
Odds: 28-1
Last Six: 9, MC, MC, 38, 67, WD
Best 3 at Kapalua: 3 (2016), 24 (2019), 34 (2018)

12. Patrick Reed

Patrick Reed Pneumonia
Patrick Reed plays a shot on the first hole during the first round of the TOUR Championship at East Lake GC on Sept 2, 2021 in Atlanta, GA. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox via Getty Images)

After nearly dying from the COVID jab, Reed has struggled to find his form. In five official starts to the 2022 season, Reed owns just one top 10 (T2, Bermuda). He did, however, post a T3 at the unofficial Hero World Challenge against a super stout field… The enigmatic star ended the 2021 year at No. 25 in the world rankings, his worst position since becoming a full time PGA Tour member… The good news? Reed won this event in 2015, and finished second in both 2016 and 2020.

FedEx: 28th
OWGR: 25th
Odds: 25-1
Last Six: 3, 32, 61, 56, 2, 68
Best 3 at Kapalua: 1 (2015), 2 (2020, 2016)

11. Daniel Berger

Daniel Berger
Daniel Berger on the 16th green during the final round of the AT&T Byron Nelson at TPC Craig Ranch on May 16, 2021 in McKinney, TX. (Photo by Matthew Stockman via Getty Images)

Berger qualified for the Tournament of Champions by winning the Pebble Beach Pro-Am, his fourth career title. As he did in 2020, he enjoyed a solid, albeit unspectacular, 2021 campaign… The Florida native took the entire fall portion of the 2021-22 season off, and will make his first official start this week at Kapalua… Berger enters Maui ranked No. 19 in the world rankings, and, with no starts on the season, dead last in the FedEx Cup. His play at Kapalua has been similar to his career: solid and consistent (T10, T11 and T14).

FedEx: 221st
OWGR: 19th
Odds: 22-1
Last Six: 7, 8, 26, 56, 5, 8
Best 3 at Kapalua: 10 (2021), 11 (2018), 14 (2017)

10. Hideki Matsuyama

Hideki Matsuyama Wins 2021 ZOZO Championship
Hideki Matsuyama hits his second shot on the 6th hole during the final round of the ZOZO Championship at Accordia Golf Narashino CC on Oct 24, 2021 in Chiba, Japan. (Photo by Atsushi Tomura via Getty Images)

In four wrap-around starts to the 2021-22 season, the reigning Masters champion owns a win (ZOZO Championship) and an additional top-10… The Japanese star sits fourth in the FedEx Cup standings, and No. 18 in the world rankings… Matsuyama struggled here in 2021 (last place), but finished T4 (2018), runner-up (2017), and T3 in his three previous career starts.

FedEx: 4th
OWGR: 18th
Odds: 28-1
Last Six: 1, 59, 67, 6, 26, 46
Best 3 at Kapalua: 2 (2017), 3 (2015), 4 (2018)

9. Bryson DeChambeau

Bryson DeChambeau
Bryson DeChambeau plays a tee shot on the 6th hole during the second round of THE PLAYERS Championship on Mar 12, 2021 at TPC Sawgrass Stadium Course in Ponte Vedra Beach, FL. (Photo by David Rosenblum/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

DeChambeau is also be making his season debut this week… For the second consecutive year, the big bomber finished ranked No. 5 in the Official World Golf Rankings… In his two most recent starts at the Sentry Tournament of Champions, the California native owns a pair of seventh-place finishes, shooting under-par in each of those eight rounds, scoring an average of 68.75 (4.25-under par).

FedEx: 221st
OWGR: 5th
Odds: 12-1
Last Six: 14, 11, 2, 31, 8, 33
Best 3 at Kapalua: 7 (2021, 2019), 26 (2018)

8. Sam Burns

Sam Burns Wins 2021 Valspar Championship on the Copperhead Course at Innisbrook Resort
Sam Burns prepares to play from the third tee during the final round of the Valspar Championship on the Copperhead Course at Innisbrook Resort on May 2, 2021 in Palm Harbor, Fla. (Photo by Julio Aguilar via Getty Images)

Burns qualified off two wins in 2021 (Valspar, Sanderson Farms)… Following a breakout year, the rising American star is now ranked No. 10 in the world and sits 2nd in the FedEx Cup standings… The LSU product makes his debut at Kapalua’s Plantation course off four top-10s in his last five starts, including three in a row.

FedEx: 2nd
OWGR: 10th
Odds: 20-1
Last Six: 3, 7, 5, 14, 1, 17
Best 3 at Kapalua: 31 (2021)

7. Viktor Hovland

Viktor Hovland Wins 2021 Hero World Challenge
Viktor Hovland celebrates after winning the Hero World Challenge at Albany Golf Course on Dec 5, 2021 in Nassau, Bahamas. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann via Getty Images)

The Norwegian star enters in red-hot form, off two straight wins (Mayakoba and Albany)… In his debut at Kapalua last year, Hovland opened with rounds of 69, 68 and 68 to sit inside the top 10 after 54 holes. A final-round 76, though, sent the 24-year-old tumbling to a T31 finish… Hovland enters Maui ranked No. 7 in the world and 5th in the FedEx Cup standings.

FedEx: 5th
OWGR: 7th
Odds: 14-1
Last Six: 1, 1, 18, 44, 49, 4
Best 3 at Kapalua: 31 (2021)

6. Patrick Cantlay

Patrick Cantlay
Patrick Cantlay tees off on the 6th during a practice round prior to the start of the 2021 U.S. Open at Torrey Pines GC on June 15, 2021 in San Diego, CA. (Photo by Harry How via Getty Images)

The reigning FedEx Cup champ, and PGA Tour MVP, will make his first start of the 2021-22 season… The California native starts the 2022 year ranked No. 4 in the world… Cantlay has finished inside the top 15 in three career starts at the Plantation Course.

FedEx: 221st
OWGR: 4th
Odds: 14-1
Last Six: 4, 1, 11, 23, MC, 13
Best 3 at Kapalua: 4 (2020), 13 (2021), 15 (2018)

5. Jordan Spieth

Jordan Spieth Masters Augusta National
Jordan Spieth plays a shot from a bunker on the 10th hole during a practice round prior to the Masters at Augusta National Golf Club on April 06, 2021 in Augusta, GA. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

Spieth makes his return to Maui after a three-edition absence… Punching a ticket with a win in San Antonio, the three-time major winner is a true horse for the Plantation course, owning a trio of top-3 finishes, highlighted by a win in 2016… The 28-year-old Texan made just one start in the fall portion of the new season, finishing T18 at the CJ Cup… He enters Kapalua with a world ranking of No. 14.

FedEx: 141st
OWGR: 14th
Odds: 20-1
Last Six: 20, 18, 24, 34, 73, 12
Best 3 at Kapalua: 1 (2016), 2 (2014) 3 (2017)

4. Jon Rahm

Jon Rahm Masters Valderrama-1
Jon Rahm tees off on the 9th hole during day four of the Estrella Damm N.A. Andalucia Masters at Real Club Valderrama on June 30, 2019 in Cadiz, Spain. (Photo by Warren Little via Getty Images)

The world No. 1 has not teed it up since a two-start set on the European Tour in mid-October and should enter 2022 fully rested… The 27-year-old Spaniard comes off a year in which he elevated an already world-class game to another level, winning his first major title at the U.S. Open… In four appearances at Kapalua, Rahm owns four top-10 finishes with a runner-up in 2018 his best showing.

FedEx: 221st
OWGR: 1st
Odds: 9-1
Last Six: MC, 17, MC, 1, 9, 3
Best 3 at Kapalua: 7 (2021), 8 (2019), 2 (2018)

3. Collin Morikawa

Collin Morikawa Wins 2021 DP World Tour Championship
Collin Morikawa hits a tee shot during the final round of the DP World Tour Championship at Jumeirah Golf Estates on Nov 21, 2021 in Dubai, UAE. (Photo by Mateo Villalba / Quality Sport Images via Getty Images)

The reigning “Champion Golfer of the Year” enters off a blown five-shot lead at Tiger’s event in Albany… Overall, though, Morikawa appears to be in great form – coming off four straight top-7 finishes, including a win at the European Tour’s Dubai finale… The 24-year-old Cal-Berkeley product enjoyed another stellar campaign in 2021, winning three worldwide events, highlighted by a victory at The Open Championship – his second career major title.

FedEx: 15th
OWGR: 2nd
Odds: 10-1
Last Six: 5, 1, 7, 2, 28, 63
Best 3 at Kapalua: 7 (2021), 7 (2020)

2. Xander Schauffele

Xander Schauffele Leads Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games
USA’s Xander Schauffele tees off on the 5th tee in round 2 of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at the Kasumigaseki CC in Kawagoe on July 30, 2021. (Photo by Kazuhiro NOGI / AFP via Getty Images)

Qualified for Maui with a gold medal victory at the Tokyo Olympics… The world No. 6 is another thoroughbred at the Plantation course, owning a win and a pair of top-5 finishes. His scoring average in those 12 rounds is a sizzling 68.17 (nearly 5-under par per round)… Schauffele has made just two official 2021-22 starts, posting a T28 and T18.

FedEx: 110th
OWGR: 6th
Odds: 12-1
Last Six: 12, 28, 18, 3, 49, 16
Best 3 at Kapalua: 1 (2019), 2 (2020), 5 (2021)

1. Justin Thomas

Justin Thomas Tour Championship
Justin Thomas smiles after playing his shot from the 9th tee during the second round of the TOUR Championship at East Lake GC on Sept 3, 2021 in Atlanta, GA. (Photo by Keyur Khamar / PGA TOUR via Getty Images)

JT finished the 2021 calendar year ranked No. 7 in the world. It marked the fifth consecutive year positioned inside the Official World Golf Ranking’s top 10 – the second longest current streak, behind only Dustin Johnson… Thomas is truly a horse for the course at the Plantation, winning twice while finishing third two other times… Following a somewhat down year, the 28-year-old Kentucky native enters off four top-5 finishes in his six most recent starts, including two straight.

FedEx: 32nd
OWGR: 8th
Odds: 8-1
Last Six: 5, 3, 18, 4, 22, 4
Best 3 at Kapalua: 1 (2020, 2017), 3 (2021, 2019)



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