GOLF

PGA Betting Guide for the Travelers Championship

Picking winners of a golf tournament is hard. Doing it consistently is downright impossible. But finding value is something all bettors must practice in order to give themselves the best chance to make hay when the day finally comes that they ping a champion.

Below we will cover the best bets for the Travelers Championship based on current form, course fit, and, of course, the value of their odds over at FanDuel Sportsbook. For more info on TPC River Highlands and the key stats this week, check out the Course Primer.

Stats are from Fantasy National Golf Club and are for golfers in the field over the last 50 rounds, unless otherwise noted.

At the Top

Patrick Cantlay (+1000) - Cantlay is second in the win odds behind this week's favorite, Brooks Koepka (+750), but it is very difficult to bet Koepka at such short odds when he has a track record of underperforming in these types of mid-tier events. That Koepka could be 8/1 or 9/1 at every major and only a shade shorter than that this week shows there is not a lot to love. Cantlay, on the other hand, just earned his first win a few weeks back at the Memorial and finished T21 at the U.S. Open. The issue with Cantlay was always the putter, and he seems to have figured that out. He's gained strokes with the short stick in four straight events, three of those at 4.2 strokes or more. He is first in total strokes gained and second tee to green. He also briefly held the course record at TPC River Highlands when he fired a second round 60 as an amateur in 2011.

Justin Thomas (+1800) - Thomas' odds have shortened throughout the week, and even coming off an injury and now a missed cut, Thomas is just too good a player to be anything other than the second or third favorite in any event. He is first in strokes gained: tee to green and birdies or better gained, and before the Florida swing and his injury he had back to back top-3 finishes. The upside is a blowout victory, and he is close to free money in this field to get a top 20 finish at a plus payout (+110).

Bubba Watson (+2200) - Watson's career success has been defined by a few events that he just absolutely crushes, and this is one of them. He has 12 career wins on the PGA Tour and 3 of them have come at the Travelers Championship, including last year's come-from-behind victory. He missed the cut at the U.S. Open last week, but he missed in 2015 and 2018 right before the Travelers and it didn't stop him from winning at TPC River Highlands.

Value Spots

Viktor Hovland (+5000) and Matthew Wolff (+6500) - College teammates at Oklahoma State, Hovland and Wolff are priced the same or shorter than established pros with actual Tour wins under their belts, and that should tell you everything you need to know. Wolff is the outright value at a much better price despite having just smoked Hovland in the NCAA individual championship by 12 strokes, whereas Hovland has more value in the placing markets - he is +1400 for a top 5 compared to Wolff's +1300, +650 for a top 10 versus Wolff's +600, and +310 for a top 20 against Wolff's +270.

Russell Knox (+6000) - Knox won this event in 2016, though that was a unique year in that the event was played in August because of the Olympics. He is 8th in total strokes gained in his last 50 rounds on Pete Dye-designed courses, and he is 19th on courses measuring less than 7,200 yards. He has gained strokes tee to green in all but one event this year, and he flashed some solid iron play last time out, gaining 4.8 strokes on his approaches at the Memorial. He finished T27 there and T8 before that at Colonial, another shorter course.

Adam Hadwin (+8000) - Hadwin has been trending in the right direction and booked a nice finish at the RBC Canadian Open, staying around the top 10 all week and ultimately finishing T6. He's not winning any driving contests but keeps it in play and has shown some serious life with his irons lately. The recipe for Hadwin is solid approach play plus solid putting. He gained 3.8 strokes on approach and 3.2 strokes putting at Hamilton Golf & Country Club, and those greens are a similar bent/poa combo to what he'll see this week. In fact, he's gained on the greens each of the last two years at TPC River Highlands. If he stays hot with his irons, he will contend this week.

Russell Henley (+8000) - Henley has decent form at TPC River Highlands, having finished T6 last year and T11 in 2016. He is 7th in total strokes gained on Pete Dye-designed courses. Typically a good putter, Henley has lost strokes putting in five straight events and is due for regression back to his baseline, and he's shown a propensity to have out-of-this-world putting tournaments if he's on. The recent form is a problem, with three missed cuts in his last four events, but at 80/1 he is talented enough to take a flyer on.

Long Shots

Sepp Straka (+12000) - Straka has been lingering on leaderboards despite lacking consistency. In eight rounds between the U.S. Open and the RBC Canadian Open, he had three individual rounds gaining more than four strokes on the field. If he strings together three of those rounds in a single tournament, he's going to find himself in contention. Straka is doing the bulk of his damage tee to green and can be somewhat trusted in this field as he ranks 16th in strokes gained: approach. Given his ability to click for a single round, also consider him in the first round leader market at +8500.

Cameron Champ (+15000) - He was brought up as a DFS play this week and the same logic applies here. Champ was the flavor of the month to start the swing season coming off a terrific Web.com Tour season last year. He's crashed and burned since, but he'll be a prime play in the softer fields between majors over the next few weeks. He will surely look at the brightness of the Hovland and Wolff stars and take it as a slight against him.