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Jim ‘Bones’ MacKay returning to the bag as new full-time caddie for Justin Thomas



Announced early on Thursday morning by Golf Channel, Jim “Bones” MacKay will be returning to the bag as the new full-time caddie for world number six, Justin Thomas.

MacKay spent 25 years as Phil Mickelson’s caddie before he left the six-time major winner’s bag for an on-course reporter gig at NBC Sports and Golf Channel in 2017.

“It came out of left field very recently. I have just tremendous respect for [Thomas] as a person and a player. It was an incredible phone call to get and I said yes,” MacKay told Golf Channel.

MacKay has filled in on Thomas’ bag before, once at the 2018 Sony Open, and multiple times again in 2020. MacKay was on the bag for Thomas’ three-stroke victory at the 2020 WGC – FedEx St. Jude Invitational. Thomas’ prior caddie, Jimmy Johnson, had been on his bag since his 2015 rookie season on Tour.

On the departure of Johnson, JT posted this statement to his Instagram:


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MacKay will continue his work as an on-course reporter for NBC Sports and Golf Channel when Thomas’ schedule allows, but this was an opportunity he could not pass up.

“I love to caddie and I loved my role with NBC/Golf Channel,” MacKay commented, “but it’s Justin Thomas.”

The 14-time PGA Tour winner is coming off a season where he won the Players Championship in March, and finished fourth in the FedEx Cup. Thomas has yet to officially commit to any events in the fall swing.

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2021 Sanderson Farms Championship DraftKings fantasy golf picks



After a one-week break for the Ryder Cup, the fall swing is back in gear, and players will be traveling to Jackson, Mississippi, this week for the Sanderson Farms Championship. Albeit under different title sponsors, this tournament has been part of the PGA Tour schedule since 1968, although it has only been played at the current host course, the Country Club of Jackson, since 2015.

While many of the world’s best players will be opting to rest up after the Ryder Cup, Sergio Garica is making the trek from Wisconsin to defend last year’s title. Other notables include Sam Burns, Sungjae Im, Will Zalatoris, and Corey Conners. The field is about what we’ve come to expect for fall series events. While there may be a lack of elite talent at the top, there is still an abundance of capable players in the middle to lower tiers of this field.

As far as the task at hand, the Country Club of Jackson is stock par 72, measuring 7,461 yards with Bermuda-grass fairways, greens, and rough. Perusing through previous iterations of this tournament, it’s fairly evident that there is no set way to succeed at this course. We’ve seen bombers win. We’ve seen ultra-accurate fairway finders win. We’ve seen both short and inaccurate drivers be able to mask off-the-tee inefficiencies with elite iron play, and we’ve also seen the player who simply rolls in the most 20-footers win this tournament as well.

For that reason, I am not entirely caught up in finding specialists at a specific skill set. I’m more so looking for players that can make a ton of birdies, are in good form, and have experienced success on Bermuda-grass greens. Given the wide range of skill sets in play here, I would definitely favor recent form this week over course fit.

Let’s dig into my DraftKings picks!

Top 2021 Sanderson Farms Championship PGA DFS picks

$10,000 range 

Will Zalatoris, $10,800 (22.99% projected ownership)

I’ve already expressed my love for Zalatoris in the betting article, and while I rarely endorse players above 20 percent ownership, the top of the board is a little strange this week as this field is lacking in elite talent. Every player above $10,000 is projected to garner over 14 percent ownership, so there isn’t really a clear pivot. My suggestion would be for fantasy managers to just select their preferred option and differentiate farther down the board. Corey Conners would be my second favorite play, and he is actually garnering 28.3 percent projected ownership. I think it’s worth paying up for Zalatoris this week, as he will be the centerpiece of the majority of my lineups.

$9,000 range

Charley Hoffman, $9,000 (11.91% projected ownership)

I’m a little surprised that Charley Hoffman is only $9,000 this week considering he is as low as 20/1 at some sports books. Conversely, I thought that Hoffman would also be one of the most popular golfers on the slate because of the modest price tag. It actually seems like fantasy managers are skipping the $9,000 range entirely when we remove Mito Pereira from the equation. Pereira is $9,900 and carrying 18.29 percent projected ownership, yet no one else in this range is over 12 percent. Everything seems to be spread out between players like Hoffman, Si Woo Kim, Cameron Tringale, Cameron Davis, Harold Varner, and Keegan Bradley. Not only is Hoffman the cheapest option of that bunch, but he is also the player I am highest on.

$8,000 range

Carlos Ortiz, $8,600 (9.42% projected ownership)

Carlos Ortiz just narrowly missed a selection on my outright card, but I will gladly deploy the former Houston Open winner in DraftKings. In three appearances at the Country Club of Jackson, Ortiz has both a third and fourth-place finish. His success here certainly makes sense, as over his last 36 rounds, Ortiz is the number one player in this field from 125-150 yards, a range where 20 percent of the approach shots from C.C. of Jackson come from.

$7,000 range

Chez Reavie, $7,700 (5.25% projected ownership)

I am playing a lot of bombers this week, so Chez Reavie is a nice change-up to represent the Ryan Armour and Cody Gribble crowd who have also experienced a great deal of success at the Country Club of Jackson. Despite ranking 134th out of 144 players in driving distance, Reavie ranks 14th in strokes gained off the tee. Translation? Despite being one of the shortest players on Tour, he is so hyper-accurate that his driver is still a weapon. The two-time PGA Tour winner has also been percolating with his irons. Reavie is coming off a week at the Fortinet Championship where he gained 5.3 strokes on approach. The ownership is pretty spread out in this range, but snagging Reavie at 5 percent still feels like a steal.

$6,000 range

Adam Schenk, $6,700 (2.20% projected ownership) 

For his price both in the betting market and on DraftKings, Adam Schenk is my favorite play on the board. I cannot understand why he is so cheap, but I will gladly plug the Indiana native into the majority of my lineups. Schenk is coming off a performance at the Fortinet Championship where he gained 2.5 strokes off the tee and 1.9 strokes on approach. That was actually Schenk’s best off-the-tee week in nearly a year. His ball-striking is trending positively, and he has a tendency to play his best golf on tracks that cater to lower scoring.

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WOTW: 2020 Ryder Cup Team USA



What an unbelievable victory it was for Team USA this weekend! Any golf fan had to be excited with the strong play from everyone on the team and seeing that gold trophy back on US soil was fantastic. I was watching for the golf, but also couldn’t help noticing some of the watches that Team USA was wearing!

Captain Steve Stricker
Rolex Sky-Dweller White Gold and Black (326139-0003 – ~$31,000)
The Sky-Dweller is one of Rolex’s most complicated watches they have ever made. The case is made from white gold and the unique dial is black with the white off-center 24hr ring and white gold numeral hour markers. A fluted white gold Ring Command bezel actually works with the mechanical movement to set the date, time, and additional time zone. A black alligator leather strap gives this discontinued watch a classic look. Made between 2014-2018 this Sky-Dweller has become more and more collectible, currently demanding around $31,000.

Vice Captain Phil Mickelson
Rolex Yacht-Master II in Platinum (116689-0002 – $48,150)
The Yacht-Master II is the largest watch Rolex currently sells, at 44 millimeters. Phil’s model is crafted from white gold and platinum, making it a very heavy piece on the wrist. A Ring Command bezel, made from platinum, works with the Calibre 4161 automatic movement to run the countdown timer function and set the time. A white dial is hand finished and surrounded by white gold hour markers filled with Rolex’s Chromalight luminescent material. The classic Oyster bracelet is made from solid links of white gold with a brushed and polished 2-tone finish.

Vice Captain Davis Love III
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Stainless Steel and Coral Red (124300-0007 – $5,900)
One of the newest Rolex models, released in 2020, the new colorful dials on the Oyster Perpetual have become highly coveted by watch lovers. A Coral Red model like DL3 was wearing will cost you over double the $5,900 retail price on the secondary market. At 41mm this is the largest Oyster Perpetual model in the line. Internally there is Rolex’s Calibre 3230, a self-winding automatic movement with 70 hours power reserve. Made completely out of Rolex’s own 904L Oystersteel, the OP is extremely corrosion resistant and waterproof to 100 meters. An Oyster bracelet attaches the watch to your wrist and contains Rolex’s Oysterclasp  with 5mm Easylink adjustment link.

Patrick Cantlay
Rolex Datejust 41 in Stainless Steel and Black (126334-0017 – $9,650)
The Rolex Datejust is one of the longest running product names in the catalog. Introduced in 1945, it was the first self-winding automatic watch to have a date that changed over instantly at midnight. A 41mm case made of 904L Oystersteel protects a Rolex Calibre 3235 movement that offers 70hrs of power reserve and contains 31 jewels. The iconic Rolex fluted bezel gives the watch a little more bling and is crafted from white gold. An Oyster bracelet is made from matching Oystersteel and comes together with Rolex’s Oysterclasp that features an Easylink extension link to dial in the perfect fit.

Bryson DeChambeau
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Stainless Steel and Coral Red (124300-0007 – $5,900)
Yes, Bryson and David Love III were wearing the same Oyster Perpetual this week! The Coral Red dial is hand-finished and contains white gold hour markers that are filled with Rolex’s own Chromalight luminescent material for easy reading in low light. A domed bezel is made from stainless steel and polished for a mirror-like finish that flows perfectly with the scratch-resistant sapphire crystal. A solid value if you can find one at your Rolex dealer, but be ready to spend over $13,000 for a new one on the secondary market.

Collin Morikawa
Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra 150m Master Chronometer GMT Worldtimer ( – $8,900)
Collin was seen wearing a dressier rose gold De Ville Chronograph during the opening ceremonies but put on this Seamaster Worldtimer to celebrate the victory. Created from stainless steel the 43mm case surrounds a detailed blue dial with a picture of the world at the center. The world is printed on a Grade 5 titanium disc and surrounded by a glass ring with a 24hr scale printed on it. Iconic cities from around the world surround the dial and are color coded to work with the 24hr ring so you can tell the time at any location in the world. The light blue section of the ring denotes daytime hours while the darker blue shows nighttime. Omega designed the Calibre 8938 to run this world time function as well as keep precise local time and contains their CO-AXIAL escapement for better energy transfer. A textured blue rubber strap with contrast stitching keeps the watch securely on the wrist.

Dustin Johnson
Hublot Big Bang UNICO Golf Texalium Blue Carbon (416.YL.5120.VR – ~$27,500)
Limited to just 200 pieces worldwide, the Blue Carbon version of the Big Bang UNICO Golf watch is not seen very often. This extremely complicated HUB 1580 movement not only tells time, but keeps your score on the course. The pushers on the right side of the case are used to track what hole you are on and the score for that hole. Your current total score is displayed just above 6 o’clock and it is all handled mechanically. The case is 45mm and made from Blue Carbon fiber with a Texalium layer that gives the carbon fiber a silver shine to it. The classic Hublot round bezel is made from the same blue carbon fiber and held down with 6 titanium H-screws.

Brooks Koepka
Rolex Daytona “Panda” in Stainless Steel (116500ln-0001 – $13,150)
The most coveted and collectable watch in the world today, say hello to the Rolex Daytona “Panda”. All Daytonas are collectable but the white dial that Brooks was wearing is the classic version with the black ring subdials. Made from 904L Oystersteel, the 40mm case is easy to wear by all but the largest and smallest wrists. The Daytona was introduced in 1963 and is named after the famous road race. The bezel is made from black Cerachrom ceramic and designed to pay homage to the classic 1965 model. Getting one takes a great relationship with your Rolex dealer, get on a waiting list of over 2 years, or pay the $37,500 price they demand on the secondary market.

Justin Thomas
Rolex GMT-Master II “Pepsi” on Jubilee (126710blro-0001 – $9,700)
The Rolex GMT-Master II is a hard watch to get your hands on and the “Pepsi” versions might be the hardest. The “Pepsi” nickname comes from the uni-directional blue and red Cerachrom ceramic bezel that is very hard to create and took Rolex years to perfect. Made from 904L Oystersteel, the 40mm case has a stainless screw-down case back that gives the GMT a 100m water resistance rating. Inside is Rolex’s own Calibre 3285 self-winding, automatic movement that is Swiss Official Chronometer Testing Institute (COSC) certified to be extremely accurate. A Jubilee bracelet gives the watch a slightly flashier look and is made from solid Oystersteel links.

Jordan Spieth
Rolex GMT-Master II White Gold “Pepsi” (116719blro-0001 – ~$39,000)
Jordan kept his watch pretty hidden all week and had nothing on his wrist while spraying champaign on teammates. I found a glimpse of his GMT-Master II under his brown sport coat during the opening ceremonies. If you want an “under the radar” watch, the white gold GMT-Master II is the perfect candidate. Most will see a “Pepsi” dial and think it is a traditional steel model, but those who really know understand how special this watch is. Only made from the end of 2014 through 2018, these are crafted from Rolex’s own white gold alloy. Rolex has its own foundry to ensure that their white gold is durable enough for everyday wear. A classic black dial with white gold hour markers and a date window at 3 o’clock is easy to read. Rolex’s Oyster bracelet is made from 3 flat links of solid white gold and finished in a brushed and polished 2-tone finish. These white gold GMT pieces will command around $39,000 on the secondary market, compared to around $23,000 for a steel model.

Daniel Berger
Rolex Yacht-Master 40 in Rose Gold (126655-0002 – $27,300)
The combination of rose gold and black is pretty stunning on the Yacht-Master 40. Introduced in 2019, Berger has been wearing this piece for a few years now. The case is made from Rolex’s own rose gold alloy that is engineered to not fade or corrode under any daily wear. A screw-down crown on the right side of the case is made from matching rose gold and features Rolex’s Triplock waterproof seals. A bidirectional rose gold bezel contains a matte black Cerachrom ceramic insert with 60-minute graduated markings. A black rubber Oysterflex strap encases “blades” of titanium and nickel that add durability to the strap. The strap also features a patented cushioning system to add comfort and Rolex’s Oysterclasp in matching rose gold.

Not everyone wore something on their wrist, I did not see any of these players or vice captains wearing a watch during the Ryder Cup.

  • Xander Scheuffele
  • Scottie Scheffler
  • Tony Finau
  • Harris English
  • Zach Johnson
  • Fred Couples
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Ryder Cup Rundown: Sunday Singles



2021 signified a seminal switch in many ways for both sides of the Ryder Cup exhibition matches. Farewell was bid to a number of golfers who had represented their colors over the years, and welcome was offered to others who donned team kits for the first or second time.

Whistling Straits was an appropriate venue for this upgrade to Ryder Cup 3.0. In appearance, it is a blend of both competing units. It looks for all the world to be an Irish or Scottish links, and yet it lies along the shore of Lake Michigan, well within the continental United States.

Sunday’s singles matches began with Europe in a 5-11 deficit needing nine points in 12 matches to retain possession of the cherished chalice. There was a prior blueprint for such a comeback, and it was written in 2012, also on midwestern U.S. soil. At Medinah Country Club near Chicago, the Euros erased a 6-10 deficit in singles. They would need to go one point better to hold bragging rights until 2023 when the matches are played in Italy for the first time.

Match One: McIlroy vs. Schauffele

Rory McIlroy arrived on the 11:04 flight to Haven, Wisconsin. He looked none the worse for wear. Still, the local authorities have been alerted to apprehend the imposter who somehow maneuvered into partner matches over the past two days and lost a passel of points to the American side. Inserted into the leadoff spot on Sunday, McIlroy took down American strongman Xander Schauffele with relative ease. The Northern Irishman played 3-under golf through the 16th green, and claimed a 3 & 2 victory over the 2020 Olympic gold medalist in golf. Schauffele managed to win a pair of holes on the day, but his two-over effort would only have been victorious in a hurricane. Would McIlroy’s headlamp heroics charge up his teammates? If not today, maybe tomorrow. In his words: “I love my teammates so much. I should have done more for them this week.”

Match Two: Lowry vs. Cantlay

Ever wonder why nicknames are never self-awarded? Now you do. Patty Ice wanted no part of an Emerald Isle double victory to begin Sunday at the Straits. For those who follow golf intimately, Cantlay should have been a generational talent since 2012 or so, but life brutally inserted itself into the equation. Bowed but not broken, bent but not laid flat, Cantlay re-emerged and at age 29, has reclaimed his lofty position in the world of golf. On Sunday, a stretch of three birdies and a par erased Lowry’s early, 1-up lead, and placed the Californian in a dominant position. Lowry, always a fighter, chipped two holes from the margin as the home stretch beckoned. In true Ice fashion, Cantlay won three consecutive holes from 14 on and claimed the first of 3.5 needed points for a Team USA victory.

Match Three: Rahm vs. Scheffler

If the man formerly known as Captain America wants to claim he should have replaced someone on this year’s USA side, it won’t be fellow Texan Scottie Scheffler. Opponent Jon Rahm played the opening quartet of holes in even par — and found himself a quick 4 down to the Ryder Cup rookie. If you’ve played Whistling Straits, you know that those four holes aren’t so easy to par, much less birdie. Rahm won a hole back at the fifth but gained no momentum over the next five holes, which were halved in pars. Spain’s Atlas was exhausted after carrying the team on his shoulders for two days and simply could not mount a charge against Team USA’s other raging rookie. In the end, it was Scheffler by 4 & 3, and a point number two of 3.5 for the home squad.

Match Four: García vs. DeChambeau

The Ryder Cup may never again see a start like this one: 345-yard drive to green, 41-foot putt for eagle, DeChambeau by one. The #BigBangTheory had the good fortune to face Sergio García who, like the aforementioned Atlas Rahm, had carried the continent for 48 hours. García won four holes on the day, but he also lost seven. You cannot lose seven holes and hope to win, unless astronomical odds are in your favor. After the first-hole fireworks, DeChambeau claimed the second and fourth holes with García winning three and five. There was no quit in either dog, but #CaptainPhysics claimed another pair as the front nine closed, to claim a 3-up lead heading into the second side. The pair exchanged four consecutive holes midway home, and BDC ended it with par at the 16th. Half a point to go for Team USA.

Match Five: Hovland vs. Morikawa

14 of 18 holes were won outright in this tilt. Hovland won two, then Morikawa won four, then they traded, then Hovland won three and Morikawa one, then they traded the last two holes. The match was halved, and it provided Team USA with the half-point it needed to claim the Cup. It also marked what might be a great rivalry for future cups. Morikawa (California) and Hovland (Oklahoma State) came out together, and although Morikawa has two majors to Hovie’s none, there’s a sense that Hovland has what it takes to be a major champion. Let’s raise a glass to the potential of these two as Ryder Cup standard-bearers for a few decades.

Match Six: Casey vs. Johnson

Grampa Dustin, tell us again how you went 5-and-oh in 2021! I’ll pull up a cushion and listen. Reality check number one came when DJ was identified as the old man on Team USA for this playing of the Ryder Cup matches. Reality check number two came when we remembered how great he can be. DJ coached Collin Morikawa into Ryder Cup comfort over the first two days while simultaneously adding to his legacy. DJ might have had a few spirits to cast off in Haven (remember that PGA Championship b.s.?) and he sent them packing. Casey was a solid opponent on day three, but despite owning the forearms that Tiger envied, the Englishman came up just a bit short against South Carolina’s tallest icon.

Match Seven: Wiesberger vs. Koepka

There stands a very good chance that Bernd Wiesberger will make the European side for next year’s matches. In the interim, the Austrian should go and get a full-chest tattoo of some fierce and mythical creature, like a Krampus. I don’t know that there is anything about him that strikes fear into Team USA, and I suspect that he’ll need it in 363 days or so. The match was even through fifteen holes, true. Koepka seemed to toy with the super collider until the moment he chose to strike. I may be spitballing here, but that’s how it looks from this bluff. Perhaps that was Harrington’s bluff as well: pit someone so non-controversial against Koepka to lull the Florida Man into a malaise. Hey, it almost worked. Brilliant!

Match Eight: Poulter vs. Finau

Ian Poulter added a 2021 Finau Roadster to his massive collection of unique sports cars. Experts say it is a one-of-a-kind model, improved over the 1.0 edition, and worth the price Poulter paid. The Englishman seems to embody the spirit of the Ryder Cup better than any other European golfer. He hasn’t claimed a major championship like Danny Willett, and he doesn’t have loads of tour wins like Westwood and Casey, but every two years, Poulter comes alive. Sad to say that 2021 might have been his last. Poulty doesn’t have the length to compete in partner events, but he is crafty enough to post 4  under in singles and let the other guy make mistakes. That’s precisely what he did with Utah’s favorite son, and it resulted in a second win for Team Blue during Sunday singles play.

Match Nine: Hatton vs. Thomas

Between us, Tyrrell Hatton is tightly wound. Perhaps it’s the three sets of double consonants in his name, but there needs to be a loosening from this vantage point. Tension simply doesn’t get the job done in Ryder Cup, and that might explain the Englishman’s half-point-in-three-matches performance. Facing Justin Thomas is no small task, even if the Kentuckian’s beer tolerance currently stands at one foamy light beer (intel arriving soon). When it takes 14 holes for your opponent to make a birdie, unless it’s the third flight at your local muni, you’re in a good position. Thus it was for Thomas, and thus did another point go up in the RWB column.

Match Ten: Westwood vs. English

The best meme from Sunday is Harris English’s putter grip. The man has how much money and that’s his putter wrap? Other than that, it’s great to see the other old man, Lee Westwood, win a singles match in what might be his swan song in Ryder Cup play. We’ve seen Westy for three decades, it seems, and he’s always given us cause and pause for enthusiasm. On day three, Westy stood two down to Harris English with four to play … and won three of those holes to take the match. Isn’t that what the Ryder Cup is about? Cheers to you, Lee, on competing in 47 matches over the years, more than any other player.

Match Eleven: Fleetwood vs. Spieth

It can’t be called anything beyond disappointing for Fleetwood, and mildly disappointing for Spieth. Both came into this Ryder Cup with high expectations for leading their teams to victory. Fleetwood never found the partner that he had in Molinari, and Spieth was the victim of bad luck and great play by opponents. It’s fitting that their Sunday match should end in a tie. Spieth was two up after six, but Fleet won the next two to square the match. From that point on, it was a match of pawns. Each won two more holes, but could never put the opponent away.

Match Twelve: Berger vs. Fitzpatrick

If I told you that Matt Fitzpatrick won four holes in a five-hole span on the back nine, you probably could not fathom that he somehow lost the match. Well, he did. By the 11th hole, Daniel Berger had a two-up lead. Fitzy won 11 and 12 to square the match, then lost the 13th. He rebounded to win 14 and 15, and stood tall with three to go. That’s when Berger played one-under golf to the end, winning the 16th and 18th holes. The 18th is miserable and unforgiving, and anything less than your best, results in bogey. Both hit cracker drives, and then Fitzpatrick the 16-handicap golfer showed up. Chunk into the stream and away went hopes for … anything. Berger landed safely on the frog hair and two putts later, had another hole won and another RWB point on the board.

Closing Arguments

The final tally was 19 USA and 9 Europe. That’s a lot of wound-licking for one side and much chest-thumping for the other. If the two worst moments were Brooks swearing and American fans bloated with beer, we did all right.

It will be interesting to see how Rome 2023 shapes up. Molinari should be back in form, and perhaps Renato Paratore or Guido Migliozzi will enhance their stature and join Moli on the team.

Golf is enjoyed in Italy but is not the country’s passion. Perhaps something will change over the next 24 months.

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