Daily Fantasy Golf 2015: Breaking Down the Perfect PGA Grand Slam Line Up
There is some luck involved, no doubt about it.
When it comes to winning $1 million in fantasy golf, you have to have some luck. For Carl Bassewitz, the luck showed up on the final hole of the U.S. Open when Dustin Johnson missed an eagle putt that would have given him the outright win and inexplicably missed a short birdie putt that would have given him a chance to win the tournament in a playoff with Jordan Spieth.
However, the main reason Carl was able to come up with the winning fantasy card in DraftKings Milliionaire Maker game was skill and knowledge.
As nearly all fantasy golf players understand, it's not just about finding the big-name player like Spieth who is going to win the tournament. Obviously, that's a big part of it, but it requires finding five other players who are going to bring home the points and have excellent showings. Miss on one, and somebody else wins the $1 million.
Carl Bassewitz basically had the perfect card in coming with a 471.00-point effort. He had an elite-level player in Spieth, a former major winner in Jason Dufner, an up-and-comer in Patrick Reed, a magnificent ball striker in Louis Oosthuizen, an opportunist in Kevin Kisner and a relatively unknown but technically solid player in Tony Finau.
Superstar: Jordan Spieth
While Jordan Spieth had won the Masters and is in the midst of a brilliant year, it was not an obvious choice to take him in the U.S. Open.
You can only pick one truly elite player or else you blow your budget. Instead of taking Spieth, the selection could have been Rory McIlroy, the No. 1 player in the world. It would not have been a shocker if McIlroy had had the kind of tournament that allowed him to hoist the trophy, but it was not to be.
Spieth is not the long-distance hitter that some of the big-name players on the tour are. Spieth averages 291.0 yards off the tee, and that ranks 76th on the PGA tour. However, Spieth makes his living with accuracy, and he gains 1.653 strokes tee to green, and that ranks third on the tour.
Spieth not only won the tournament with a five under par score, he had 18 birdies and 43 pars. He earned 102 points for Carl, and his big-name stud came through in a huge way.
On the Rise: Patrick Reed
The choice of Patrick Reed was an inspired one. A couple of years ago, Spieth and Reed were veiewed as two of the up-and-coming young stars in the game.
Going into the U.S. Open, Reed was playing strong, competitive golf, but he had not established himself like Reed. It had to eat at the confident Reed and he was bound and determined to overpower the difficult Chambers Bay course.
Reed was very sharp in the first two rounds when he fired a 66 and a 69, but he faded in the final two rounds and finished at two over par and in a tie for 14th. Reed had two eagles, 17 birdies and 34 pars in picking up a solid 78.5 points for Carl.
Sweet Swinger: Louis Oosthuizen
Louis Oostuhuizen is not in the first rank of the game's elite players and is not the most popular player among American fans. That's because he does not play as many PGA tournaments as most of the big-name players who hail from this country.
But astute golf fans know what a strong game Oosthuizen has and how well-rounded his game is. The diminutive South African belts the ball 295.4 yards off the tee, and that ranks 37th among tour players. He is also sharp in his approach shots and brilliant from the bunkers.
Carl was very smart to put Oosthuizen on his team. Oosthuizen tied for second and was four-under for the tournament, as he shot 66 on moving day and 67 in the tournament's final round. He had an eagle, 18 birdies and 39 pars and he picked up 96.5 fantasy points.
Oosthuizen's brilliant showing may have been the key to Carl's victory since only 3.5 percent of those who participated in the Millionaire Maker game had him on their team.
Major Accomplishment: Jason Dufner
Jason Dufner is not having his best year, but he made his name when he won the 2013 PGA Championship. Dufner showed that he was good enough to win a major, and that made him worthy of consideration.
Dufner has had two top-10 finishes this season, but he has no top three finishes and has not been close to making a run at a title. Dufner got off to a good start in the U.S. Open with a 68 in the opening round and he played respectably from that point on.
Dufner finished three over par for the tournament and that left him in a tie for 18th. He picked up 15 birdies and 41 pars, and he earned 61.5 points for Carl's fantasy team.
Breakthrough Player: Kevin Kisner
Kevin Kisner is having his breakthrough season on the PGA Tour. Prior to the 2015 golf season, Kisner had never won $1 million in any of his previous four years.
However, Kisner has already won more than $3.1 million and he has three second-place finishes to his credit. Kisner is averaging 70.174 per round, and that ranks 22nd on the tour. Carl recognized that Kisner is coming on with a rush and he gave him a key spot on his fantasy team.
Kisner shot a one-over 271 in the tournament, and that was good enough to put him into a tie for 12th. Kisner had 13 birdies, 47 pars and he picked up 64.5 fantasy points.
Sharp Call: Tony Finau
If you had never heard of Tony Finau before, you're not alone. Going into the 2015 season, Finau had participated in one PGA event in each of the previous three seasons, and he failed to make the cut in two of them.
But the Salt Lake City native has been making his bones this season. Finau has played in 25 tournaments and made the cut in 17 of them. He also has four top-10 finishes and has earned more than $1.6 million.
Unknown? Not to Carl, and he gave him a key spot on his team. Finau shot a two over par 282, and that left him in a tie for 14th.
Finau shot 69-68 in the first two rounds, and he justified the faith that 9.1 percent of the DraftKings Millionaire Maker players had in him. He earned 68 fantasy points with his surprising showing.