The 3M open returns this week for the third straight season at TPC Twin Cities in Blaine, Minnesota. Playing to a par 71, the course measures over 7,400 yards. We can expect some fantastic scores this week, with previous winning scores of -21 and -19. The Arnold Palmer design features over 70 bunkers and 27 water hazards, so accuracy on approach shots will be imperative. Some bigger name players are in attendance will be Dustin Johnson, Patrick Reed and Tony Finau, but the field in general is not one of the strongest on tour. Lets take a further look at some key holes, as well as some players I like to play well this week.
Key Hole Front Nine
Hole 7- Par 4, 381 Yards
The seventh hole is going to be one of the bigger risk reward holes on the course. The bigger hitters will have the option to try and carry the water and reach the green, setting up an eagle opportunity. A poorly struck tee shot with this strategy may lead to disaster. For the more conservative player, hit less than driver and set up an approach shot with a wedge. Throughout the week, we will see plenty of both, so I will have my eyes glued to 7.
Key Holes Down the Stretch in the 3M Open
Hole 14- Par 4, 417 Yards
The 14th hole is a classic Dog Leg left hole around Cavner’s Cove. Accuracy is the name of the game with this beaut, with water lurking on each shot. Coming down the stretch on Sunday, we can see some aggressive lines off the tee, leaving players with a short wedge to the green. Expect to see many Birdies as well as Bogeys or worse all week.
Hole 16- Par 4, 302 Yards
The last three holes of the tournament will offer many chances to produce some late round heroics, starting with 16. Only measuring 300 yards and some change, even the shorter hitters can take a crack at this on. Any time we have a short par 4 like this, expect to see many eagles and birdies, but a costly bogey on this hole will feel like much worse.
Hole 18- Par 5, 600 Yards
One of my favorite things on the PGA tour is a Par 5 finishing hole. It gives the players who are one or two strokes off the lead a last chance at taking home the trophy. We see it at Torrey Pines each year, with some incredible finishes in years past. We have even seen it at this event. In 2019, Bryson Dechambeu made eagle on 18 to move to -20, one shot ahead of Collin Morikawa and Matt Wolff. But from just off the green, Wolff rolled in an eagle of his own for his first PGA tour Victory. We can only hope for fireworks like that this time around.
Players to Watch in the 3M Open
Tony Finau +1400 ($10,700 DK/$11,500 FD)
Tony Finau is more than due for a win. Finau has one career win coming in 2016 at the Puerto Rico Open. Since then, he has over 35 top 10 finishes with no victories. His talent is undeniable, he has just struggled to put it together for 72 holes to secure that elusive second victory. He has as good a chance as any this week, with a field and a good track record on the course (T-23 in 2019, T-3 in 2020) Look for Tony to start the week solid and come on strong towards the end to get win #2.
Robert MacIntyre +2800 ($9,000 DK/$10,500 FD)
Return of Bobby Mac! Robert MacIntyre will be in the field this week and I love seeing the young lad over in the states. Bobby Mac has been on a roll this year making 9 of 10 cuts, including a top 12 at the Masters and a T-8 this past week at the open. Look for him to continue his great form and potentially steal a win.
Sergio Garcia +3300 ($9,900 DK/ $10,400 FD)
The 2020-2021 season has been an rollercoaster for the Spaniard. Garcia missed the cut in his first 2 events, then he won in his third event. He then missed 4 straight cuts, starting with the Masters through the PGA championship. He is now on a streak of 3 straight top 20’s and on a course that suites his style of play. If the putter shows up at all, look for Sergio to contend this week.
Don’t Sleep on Some Long Shots in the 3M Open
Hank Lebioda +4000 ($7,900 DK/$9,700 FD)
Although not yet a household name, Lebioda can become one if he secures his first tour victory. Lebioda has been on fire since the start of May, racking up 5 top 20’s, with 3 straight top 8’s in his last event. Look for Hank to continue his strong play for another week, and to carry on the legacy of lefties winning on tour wearing visors.
Jhonattan Vegas +5000 ($7,500 DK/$8300 FD)
Jhonny Vegas is another player with some juicy odds who I like to contend. Vegas is coming off a great stretch of golf with 3 top 11’s in his past 5 starts. Vegas is one of the top players on tour in Strokes Gained off the tee, so if he can dial in his irons expect a lot of birdie chances throughout the week.
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(Featured Photo Credit: Getty Images)
-Nick B (@Nick_Beezel)