With only three events remaining for U.S. Ryder Cup contenders to earn points, this week's RBC Canadian Open is a huge opportunity for those in the field. Ten of the top 25 players in the Ryder Cup standings will be at the Canadian Open. If any player makes the cut, he will gain points on those not playing.
Also, only three of the top eight will be at the Canadian Open: No. 1 Brooks Koepka, No. 2 Dustin Johnson and No. 5 Bubba Watson.
There are more than 1,000 points available to the winner of the Canadian Open, which is at Glen Abbey Golf Club in Ontario and has a purse of $6.2 million ($1,116,000 to the winner). The following two weeks, players can earn points at WGC-Bridgestone Invitational and then, finally, the PGA Championship. The top eight players in the Ryder Cup standings qualify automatically for the team. Captain Jim Furyk will later select four players for the team as Captain's Picks.
At the Canadian Open and the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational, players receive one point for every $1,000 earned. That's upped to two points per $1,000 at the PGA Championship for the winner and 1.5 points for the rest of the PGA Championship field.
Here's a look at some of the players outside the top 8 set to make a big move at the Canadian Open.
Kuchar is No. 12 in the latest Ryder Cup standings with 3,715.446 points. That leaves him 562.362 points away from matching Webb Simpson at No. 8. Based on estimated points, Kuchar would need to finish first or second to earn enough points to temporarily vault into the top eight.
Thanks to his tie for second at The Open Championship, Kisner moved from No. 19 to No. 13 in the latest Ryder Cup standings. Kisner is only one spot behind Kuchar, but he trails Kucher by almost 400 points. Only a win at the RBC Canadian Open would be enough for Kisner to move all the way into the top eight this week.
Finau is No. 14 in the Ryer Cup standings after tying with Kuchar and Jordan Spieth for ninth at The Open. Like Kisner, only a win in Ontario would have him in a coveted top-8 spot with two events to go. Finau does have three top-10 finishes in the three majors played so far, including a fifth-place finish at the U.S. Open. If he makes it 4-for-4 with top 10s at the PGA Championship, he could be around the top 10 of the Ryder Cup USA rankings.
At 2,292.893 points and No. 21 this week, Walker can't move into an automatic spot with a win. The best he could do is jump to No. 13. But that could be a momentum changer going into the final two events.
Charley Hoffman (and Gary Woodland)
Because Hoffman and Woodland are separated by only 48 points, they can both be mentioned in the same pairing. The two are ranked Nos. 23 and 24 going into the Canadian Open. A win by either Hoffman or Woodland would vault them into the top 15. Hoffman almost won the Canadian Open last year, as he lost to Jhonattan Vegas in a playoff. Vegas has won the event the past two years.