R3Tee 12:05PM


Written by
Ryan Pohle, RotoWire
May 30 2024
- 8 MIN
Ripper PR lead STORY Image 1

The LIV Golf League heads to Texas as the second half of the season gets underway at the Golf Club of Houston. Crushers GC continues to lead the season-long team standings while two-time event-winner Joaquin Niemann of Torque GC leads the individual standings.

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Here are the team Power Rankings for the eighth event of the LIV Golf League season.

1. RIPPER GC. Ripper GC tops this week’s Power Rankings for a second straight week and for good reason – the Australians have found their stride after a mediocre start to the year, with back-to-back wins to move up to third in the team standings. Cameron Smith has a pair of T2 results over his last four LIV Golf starts, and Marc Leishman has upped his level with three consecutive top-15 finishes. Prediction: Smith, Leishman, Herbert, Jones

2. TORQUE GC. It seems as if it’s just a matter of time before Torque GC picks up its first win of the year, as they’re the only team to finish T6 or better in every event. Carlos Ortiz has posted five straight top 25s and if you like the course history angle, he was T4 at the Golf Club of Houston in 2019. Joaquin Niemann continues to dominate the individual standings and ranked seventh in SG: Tee-to-green at Valhalla. Prediction: Ortiz, Niemann, Pereira, Munoz

3. FIREBALLS GC. Making the biggest jump up the rankings this week from eighth to third are the Fireballs after finishing in a share for second in Singapore. Abraham Ancer has followed up his win in Hong King with three straight top-10 finishes and had a T8 in his lone appearance at the venue. Captain Sergio Garcia is showing that his game is still in fine form, lying 10th in the individual standings with a pair of runner-up finishes. Prediction: Ancer, Garcia, Puig, Chacarra

4. LEGION XIII. Legion XIII remains in second place in the team standings despite cooling off slightly with fifth-place finishes over its last two tournaments. Jon Rahm’s play continues to be predictable as he’s the only player on LIV to post a top-10 finish in all seven starts, while Tyrrell Hatton has also been rock solid with just one finish outside the top 20. If Caleb Surratt or Kieran Vincent have a good weekend, they will contend. Prediction: Rahm, Hatton, Surratt, Vincent

5. SMASH GC. Brooks Koepka picked up his first LIV victory of the year his last time out, but it was only good enough to help Smash GC to a fourth-place finish as Jason Kokrak and Graeme McDowell were unable to contribute much. Talor Gooch quietly posted his fourth top-10 finish in Singapore and his T4 result at the Golf Club of Houston in 2019 makes him a prime candidate to lead the team here. Prediction: Gooch, Koepka, Kokrak, McDowell

6. CRUSHERS GC. The Crushers still lead the overall standings, but an 11th-place finish in Singapore and a best finish of sixth over their last three starts leave some question marks. One thing that’s not in doubt is the play of Bryson DeChambeau, who was runner-up at the PGA Championship. Charles Howell III has a good track record at the venue, posting five top-20 finishes over his last seven appearances in Houston. Prediction: Howell III, DeChambeau, Casey, Lahiri

7. CLEEKS GC. Coming off their first podium finish of the season, the Cleeks will look to carry their momentum stateside. Speaking of momentum, 51-year-old Richard Bland is playing arguably the best golf of his career as he just won the Senior PGA Championship by three shots. Rookie Kalle Samooja is coming off his best finish of the year (T14 in Singapore), and Adrian Meronk has three top-10 finishes over seven events. Prediction: Bland, Meronk, Samooja, Kaymer

8. STINGER GC. Stinger GC continues to be a hit-or-miss group with three podium finishes and three results of ninth or worse. Dean Burmester is looking like one of the most improved and best players on LIV this year, as he sits third in the individual standings and finished T12 at Valhalla. Right behind him in the standings is Louis Oosthuizen, who has also been much improved with four top-10s as he’s in search of his first LIV victory. Prediction: Oosthuizen, Burmester, Grace, Schwartzel

9. 4ACES GC. Outside of a runner-up finish early in the year in Las Vegas, the 4Aces have failed to finish sixth or better in the other six tournaments. Harold Varner III and Pat Perez have been the culprits behind the team’s fall, with both sitting in the bottom 10 of the individual standings. That’s put a lot of pressure on Dustin Johnson, who does have three top-10 finishes. Patrick Reed will look for a good week in his home state. Prediction: Reed, Johnson, Varner III, Perez

10. RANGEGOATS GC. Although the RangeGoats lack a standout player, with none of their golfers in the top 15 in the individual standings, they’ve still managed two podium finishes to sit seventh in the team standings. With three straight top-15s on LIV Golf and a runner-up spot on the DP World Tour last week, Thomas Pieters is trending nicely. Bubba Watson has held the team back, however, failing to finish in the top half of the field in five straight tournaments. Prediction: Uihlein, Pieters, Wolff, Watson

11. HYFLYERS GC. The HyFlyers make the biggest drop in this week’s rankings, as they followed up their first podium result of the season in Adelaide with a T8 team finish in Singapore. Cameron Tringale is coming off his best result of the year having finished T14 in Singapore. Brendan Steele leads the team at 16th in the individual standings, although that’s largely from his win in Adelaide. Captain Phil Mickelson will look to rebound from a missed cut at Valhalla. Prediction: Tringale, Ogletree, Mickelson, Steele

12. IRON HEADS GC. After posting a sixth-place finish in Adelaide, the Iron Heads regressed back to the mean by finishing 12th in Singapore. Kevin Na continues to be the bright spot of the team with a pair of top-10s over his last four starts, but he simply can’t do it all himself. Scott Vincent, Jinichiro Kozuma and Danny Lee have a combined two top-20s among them. The ceiling is incredibly capped if they don’t get it going. Prediction: Na, Vincent, Kozuma, Lee

13. MAJESTICKS GC. The struggles continue for the Majesticks, who finished dead last for a third time this season in Singapore. Perhaps this is a week they can right the ship as Ian Poulter should have some fond memories of the course, having won at the venue in 2018, while teammate Henrik Stenson was T6. The team could use some contributions from Lee Westwood, who is one of just three players who’s failed to record a top-30 finish. Prediction: Poulter, Stenson, Horsfield, Westwood

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