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Jordan Spieth makes his debut in the Waste Management Phoenix Open at TPC Scottsdale this week.

Spieth picked up wins the last two times he teed it up to end the 2014 calendar year. The first came in the Emirates Australian Open and the second fell at the Hero World Challenge. Because of his globetrotting, he's managed to log just one PGA TOUR start in 2014-15. That was a T35 in the WGC-HSBC Champions. Despite his lack of course history at TPC Scottsdale, he should be considered among the favorites to contend.
Jan 26 - 8:46 PM

Andrew Svoboda is set for his first appearance in the Waste Management Phoenix Open.

Svoboda was a late scratch from last week's Humana Challenge, but it appears that nothing was seriously wrong with him since he's back on the saddle at TPC Scottsdale this week. He ranks 74th in the FedExCup standings, with a T18-T8 run in the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open and The McGladrey Classic standing as the best stretch of the 2014-15 season. His most recent return was a T51 in the Sony Open in Hawaii.
Jan 26 - 8:40 PM

William McGirt returns to TPC Scottsdale for his fourth Waste Management Phoenix Open.

McGirt has a solid track record in this event, breaking par in 11 of his 12 rounds and cracking the top 25 on two occasions. The dilemma is, his recent form is lacking. Following a seventh-place finish in the Sanderson Farms Championship, he missed the cut in the OHL Classic at Mayakoba, tied for 71st at the Sony Open in Hawaii and missed the cut in the Humana Challenge. It would seem that hoping for anything better than a top-25 finish this week would be asking a bit much.
Jan 26 - 8:30 PM

Justin Leoanard makes his sixth start of the 2014-15 PGA TOUR season in the Waste Management Phoenix Open later this week.

Leonard is a veteran of a robust 20 trips to TPC Scottsdale. He has twice finished runner-up, but the most recent of those near misses came in 1999. He's missed four of his last six cuts in this event and hasn't cracked the top 10 since 2006. If the current season is any indication, it would be a mistake to place too many eggs in his basket. His best finish thus far has been a T44 at the Sony Open in Hawaii.
Jan 26 - 8:21 PM

Ricky Barnes enters his sixth Waste Management Phoenix Open after missing the cut in his only two start of 2015.

Barnes last cashed at the 2014 OHL Classic at Mayakoba, when he tied for 16th. Ultimately, he enters this week 147th in the FedExCup standings largely because of Mayakoba. He's made four of his five cuts at TPC Scottsdale, so it stands to reason the he might get back on track in the Arizona desert. His best finish was a T14 all the way back in 2004.
Jan 26 - 8:16 PM

Tony Finau received one of the last two sponsor exemptions at the Waste Management Phoenix Open.

The rookie was last man in the field on merit when it was released on Friday afternoon. He was bumped out due to four top 10s at the Humana Challenge that allowed Sung Joon Park, Steve Wheatcroft, Justin Thomas and Colt Knost to climb over in that order. Park effectively took Finau's place in the field on merit, leaving Finau at fourth alternate. The tournament then distributed the last two sponsor exemptions to Thomas and Finau. So, Wheatcroft and Knost and first and second alternate, respectively. If either or both don't get into the field of 132 at TPC Scottsdale, their top-10 exemptions will carry over to next week's Farmers Insurance Open, but they'd get into that field of 156 on merit anyway. This sort of thing happens at least once every two years, if not every two of three. As you'd expect, Finau is making his debut at the WMPO.
Jan 26 - 11:18 AM

Justin Thomas has been added to the published field of this week's Waste Management Phoenix Open.

Thomas alerted his followers on Twitter on Sunday night that he would be in Arizona this week: "Very excited to say I am playing next week at the @WMPhoenixOpen! Very grateful to receive a sponsors exemption, should be a blast." The news became official this morning. He's on quite a run, finishing inside the top seven of his last four starts and carding a 61 and 63 on the last two Fridays, respectively.
Jan 26 - 11:09 AM

Sang-moon Bae is scheduled to compete in this week's Waste Management Phoenix Open.

Given that the tournament begins on Jan. 29 and extends past the 30-day grace period inside which the Military Manpower Administration [MMA] demanded that he return home to begin fulfilling his military obligation, Bae might seem to be a surprise entry into the field of 132 at TPC Scottsdale's newly renovated Stadium Course. However, as reported earlier in the month, Bae is allowed to remain abroad during the duration of his lawsuit that counters the MMA's claim that he isn't in need of an exemption to extend his travel visa. It's unknown as to how long the legal battle will last. Meanwhile, he's 2-for-2 at the WMPO, but hasn't cracked a top 45. A T51 at the Sony Open in Hawaii was his first payday outside the top 25 since THE PLAYERS last May.
Jan 25 - 8:53 PM

Erik Compton settled for a 2-under-par 36-34=70 during his final round at the Humana Challenge, arriving at the finish line 19-under 269.

The co-leader after 54 holes didn't look nervous today but could only collect three birdies along the way. On a day when the wind was calm and scoring was low, 2-under was on the wrong side of the field average. The most impressive feat this week was the bogey prevention as Compton squared just two bogeys in 72 holes. The University of Georgia product is now 5-for-5 on the season but grabs his first top 10 since last year's U.S. Open.
Jan 25 - 7:59 PM

Ryan Palmer falls just short with a 3-under-par 32-37=69 during his final round at this week's Humana Challenge, closing out at 19-under 269.

Every hole counts in the grand scheme of things, but the par-4 seventh hole is the one that really sticks out like a sore thumb. Palmer made a mess of things and walked off the green with a triple bogey on the scorecard. While it's unfair to play the what-if game, it's easy to see him in a playoff had he simply walked away with a par on that hole. Even with the seven, Palmer finished respectfully with a T10, his third straight top 10 at this event. Gamers will want to jot down a note to use him next year as he becomes a staple atop the Humana leaderboard.
Jan 25 - 7:49 PM

Michael Putnam carded an even-par 35-37=72 during his Humana Challenge finale, closing out at 18-under 271.

The overnight co-leader couldn't build any momentum today and got lapped by the field as the course conditions were ripe for scoring. He walked off the 18th green with -1.046 strokes gained:tee-to-green and lost another 1.773 strokes on the green. Putnam can use this experience as fuel for the next time he find himself in the lead after 54 holes. This top 15 is his low finish of the season, besting his T26 which came at the CIMB Classic.
Jan 25 - 7:41 PM

Francesco Molinari tidied a 5-under-par 33-34=67 during the final round of the Humana Challenge to finish the week at 19-under 269.

The Italian hit two-thirds of the greens in regulation today and converted five of those into birdies. His other two birdies came on hole outs, the first for par on the par-3 third and then again for birdie on the par-3 15th. The difference this week was La Quinta Country Club as he settled for a 1-under there while playing 18-under the rest of the tournament. Regardless, this will go in the books as a top 10 , the seventh of his PGA TOUR career.
Jan 25 - 7:31 PM

Justin Thomas settled for a 3-under-par 34-35=69 in his final round of this week's Humana Challenge, closing the week at 20-under 268.

The overnight co-leader impressed yet again down the stretch but couldn't overcome a double bogey on the par-4 16th hole when all was said and done. Small setbacks like this are understandable when you consider he is playing his rookie season at the age of 21 years old. Thomas now has three tops 10 in his last four starts and gamers should continue to ride him while he's hot.
Jan 25 - 7:19 PM

Steve Wheatcroft sliced through PGA West's Palmer Private with a bogey-free, 5-under-par 33-34=67 to close out the Humana Challenge with a runner-up finish at 21-under 267.

Wheatcroft didn't falter when the pressure was on, closing the tournament with back-to-back birdies. He finished the day with -0.661 strokes gained: tee-to-green but made up for that with the flat stick. His Sunday navigation featured eight rolls from outside five feet including an 18'10" birdie at the first and a 24'6" par save at the ninth. This runner-up finish goes on his resume as a career low in 86 career starts.
Jan 25 - 7:11 PM

Matt Kuchar constructed a bogey-free, 5-under-par 33-34=67 in his Humana Challenge finale to reach 21-under 267 and fall one shy of the eventual winner Bill Haas.

Kuchar bounced back nicely from a mediocre 1-under third round. The highlight of the round came in the form of a hole out from 13 yards for eagle on the par-5 sixth hole. Kuchar now has four top 25s on the season in four tries. This also goes in the books as his sixth straight Humana top 25 and he will continue to be an elite option anytime he tees it up.
Jan 25 - 7:04 PM

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