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FIRST-HALF MVPS FOR EACH LIV GOLF TEAM

News
Written by
Mike McAllister
Jun 04 2024
- 5 MIN
Rahm MVP STORY lead STORY image

The second half of the 2024 LIV Golf season begins with LIV Golf Houston this week. Before we look forward, here’s one more look back at the first half with each team’s MVP. And yes, feel free to disagree!

Teams listed in order of current points standings

CRUSHERS GC

First-half MVP:  Paul Casey. Although captain Bryson DeChambeau has a slight edge in total points (by 0.83, to be exact), Casey’s improvement has been vital for the current points leaders. He finished 35th in points last year; he now ranks 13th and was in a playoff against Abraham Ancer in Hong Kong. Great to see him back in form.

LEGION XIII

First-half MVP: Captain Jon Rahm. Only player this season to finish top 10 in each of the first seven events, and leads the league in birdies. Impressive consistency, but not surprising from one of the world’s top players. The only surprise, really, is that he hasn’t yet won an individual LIV Golf trophy. Suspect that’s only a matter of time.

RIPPER GC

First-half MVP: Captain Cameron Smith. Has two runner-ups this season, including the playoff loss in Hong Kong. He’s actually in better shape that he was at the halfway point a year ago – and remember that he won twice in the second half of the season.

TORQUE GC

First-half MVP: Captain Joaquin Niemann. Shot 59 in his opening round of the season … won two of the first three events … followed that with four more top-10 finishes … leads the league in points. Has the biggest target on his back entering the second half of the season. ‘Nuff said.

STINGER GC

First-half MVP: Dean Burmester. Won the team’s first individual trophy since Charl Schwartzel and Branden Grace went back-to-back in LIV Golf’s first two events during the inaugural 2022 season. Besides the win in Miami, he has two other top-3 finishes. When captain Louis Oosthuizen selected his partner in LIV Golf’s first-ever team playoff in Adelaide, he didn’t hesitate to pick Burmester.

SMASH GC

First-half MVP: Talor Gooch. Yes, captain Brooks Koepka has one win (Singapore) and more points (75.23 to Gooch’s 68.80). And yes, Gooch hasn’t been as spectacular as last season, at least not yet. But Gooch has been more consistent than his captain and has delivered everything (short of an individual victory) that Koepka expected when Smash acquired the 2023 Individual Champion via an offseason trade. Gooch has three of the team’s five best individual finishes, the most points results (six), and has been seven shots better than Koepka in the final round. It’s really 1A and 1B, and neither player probably cares about the order.

RANGEGOATS GC

First-half MVP: Matthew Wolff. The pressure was on Wolff after Bubba Watson obtained him in the Gooch trade in hopes of unlocking his massive potential. The first half was definitely encouraging. Wolff leads the team in points (despite missing one start due to illness) and has a podium result (third in Miami) and another top-5 finish. Team results have been inconsistent, but the RangeGoats do have two podium finishes and are just one place behind Smash in the team standings.

FIREBALLS GC

First-half MVP: Abraham Ancer. Won his first LIV Golf title in Hong Kong via playoff and followed with three more top-10 finishes. Currently sixth in the points standings and with the way he’s playing, he should make even more noise in the second half.

CLEEKS GC

First-half MVP: Adrian Meronk. Signed just before the season opener, last year’s DP World Tour Player of the Year understandably struggled in Mayakoba, but he’s been the team’s steadiest player since then with three top 10s and two other top 20s, and is the only Cleeks player currently in the top 24 Lock Zone. Richard Bland has a slightly better stroke average, but Meronk has improved the team’s front-end depth.

4ACES GC

First-half MVP: Captain Dustin Johnson. He has three top-10 finishes this season, including his win in Las Vegas. The rest of the team? One (Reed’s T9 in Miami). It’s been a disappointing first half for the Aces, who have inexplicably struggled on Sundays. DJ hasn’t exactly been a pillar of consistency, but he’s played well enough to stay inside the top 10 in the season-long points race while waiting for the rest of his team to find the on-button.

HYFLYERS GC

First-half MVP: Brendan Steele. Delivered the first trophy of any kind for the HyFlyers by winning in impressive fashion in Adelaide. That’s one of just three top-10s for the Flyers this season, with captain Phil Mickelson and Andy Ogletree producing one each. Interestingly, the one player without a top 10 – Cameron Tringale – leads the team in stroke average (69.1 to Steele’s 69.8).

MAJESTICKS GC

First-half MVP: Co-Captain Henrik Stenson. It’s doubtful any of the four Majesticks would consider themselves MVP candidates given the team’s struggles in the first half, but Stenson does have the most points and two of the team’s three best individual performances. 

IRON HEADS GC

First-half MVP: Captain Kevin Na. He’s delivered some nice under-the-radar results with two top-10s in the last four starts. Of the team’s 13 top individual results, Na has seven of them. His stroke average of 68.9 is nearly 1-1/2 strokes better than any of his teammates.

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