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British Open betting preview: Johnson, Day leading tournament odds

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Dustin Johnson, who is vying to become just the seventh man to win the U.S. Open and the British Open in the same year, is listed alongside Jason Day at the top of the 2016 British Open champion board at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.

With some stereotypical sadistic Scottish weather conditions expected at Royal Troon, Johnson and Day are each listed at +800 odds to win the tournament. Johnson has made the cut at the PGA’s third major of the year six times in a row and been in the top 10 twice. For his part, Day, the world’s No. 1-ranked player, was fourth in the 2015 Open and was one stroke shy of joining a playoff.

Rory McIlroy, who won in 2014 but missed last year’s Open due to injury, is the top European on the board at +900. McIlroy is a four-time major winner and this championship presents an opportunity to get back on more equal footing with Day, Johnson and Jordan Spieth.

Speaking of Spieth, the 22-year-old star is listed at +1000. Spieth finished fifth or higher in five of his last six majors, and being consistent might help with just hanging around if bad weather wreaks havoc with scoring.

For a less daunting proposition than picking a straight-up winner, Day, Johnson, McIlroy and Spieth have +150 odds against the field at -190. Day or Johnson is at +375 against the field at -600.

Five of the eight Open champions at Royal Troon have been one-time major winners. Adam Scott (+2200) owns a Masters green jacket, and has finished fifth, third and second at the last three Opens, meaning he has nowhere to go but up if he’s to continue his streak of climbing the leaderboard.

South African PGA Tour rookie Branden Grace (+2200) had a breakout by cracking the top five last month in the U.S. Open, and has consistently been in the Open’s top 20. Seven of the last 14 British Open champions have hailed from outside the United States.

Among the darkhorses, Louis Oosthuizen (+4500) and Graeme McDowell (+9000) each have a past-champion pedigree they could bring to the fore in tough conditions. Lee Westwood (+5000), who has never won a major, is one of only two players in the field who finished in the top 10 at Royal Troon in 1997 and 2004.

Masters champion Danny Willett is also listed at +5000, which is higher than the +3300 odds he had before triumphing at Augusta National in April.

With the British Open being the season’s third major, it’s also time to consider props on the PGA’s best winning two majors in one year. Johnson is listed at +260 to win a second, while Day is listed at +260 to win either of the remaining two and +2000 to win both.

Americans favored against Europe as they look to reclaim Ryder Cup

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The tried-and-true narrative with the Ryder Cup is that Europe somehow manages to outfox the United States, which once again is the betting favorite for the biennial competition.

Europe has won eight of the past 10 competitions, including six of the last seven. With the Ryder Cup slated to begin Friday at Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chasta, Minnesota, captain Davis Love III’s American squad is a -185 favorite at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com. Captain Darren Clarke’s Europe team is a +145 underdog to win.

Along with home soil, the Americans have the 7-5 edge in world Top 20 players and a 10-7 edge in players with experience in the tournament. The Americans have not won more than 7½ of a possible 12 points from the Sunday singles matches since their memorable comeback in 1999, but having the likes of Dustin Johnson, Jordan Spieth and Patrick Reed could make a difference on the final day.

Johnson headlines the top U.S. player board at +350. Spieth is listed at +450 and Reed is at +600. Jimmy Walker, the PGA championship winner and one of the better American putters, is listed at +1600.

Rory McIlroy, fresh off capturing the FedEx Cup, is a +450 favorite to be Europe’s top player. It is worth nothing that McIlroy is playing for a fellow Northern Ireland native, Clarke. Justin Rose and Henrik Stenson, who respectively won the Olympic gold medal and British Open this summer, are listed at +550.

Rickie Fowler, who has never won a Ryder Cup match, is a +225 favorite to be the top U.S. wild card (also known as a captain’s pick). Matt Kuchar has a +240 payout, with J.B. Holmes and Ryan Moore each listed at +300.

Martin Kaymer, at +150, and Lee Westwood, at +160, are neck-on-neck in the top Europe wild card prop. Ryder Cup rookie Thomas Pieters (+225) is a big hitter whose burgeoning rapport with Stenson could carry over to the course.

For top U.S. rookie, Brooks Koepka is -120 and Moore is -110 on those golf betting lines.

Danny Willett is +300 to be the top performer among the half-dozen rookies on the Europe team. Pieters, Rafael Cabrera-Bello and Matthew Fitzpatrick are each listed at +400.

The competition begins with fourballs and foursomes matches on Friday and Saturday, before the all-important 12 singles matches on Sunday. Each of the 28 matches is worth one point (with a half-point for a tie), and the first team to accumulate 14½ points wins.

Europe is 10-7-1 since the current Ryder Cup format was introduced in 1979.

Dustin Johnson Johnson brings good history into final FedExCup event as betting favorite

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The combination of course history and coming in hot makes Dustin Johnson the betting favorite for the Tour Championship, the finale of the FedExCup playoff.

Johnson, one of the five players who will capture the FedExCup if he wins this weekend, is listed at +450 to win the tournament at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com. Not only is Johnson fresh off capturing the BMW Championship, but he has been in the top 10 three times in a row at the Tour Championship.

The layout and length of par-70 East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta places an emphasis on accuracy, but also requires being long off the tee. East Lake’s nines have been flipped, so the 18th hole is now a 600-yard par-5.

Rory McIlroy, who is sixth in the playoff standings, is the second favorite at +600 on the golf betting lines. McIlroy is  a past runner-up (in 2014) at the Tour Championship.

Jason Day (+800), Adam Scott (+1000), Paul Casey (+1400) and Patrick Reed (+1600) are the other four who would automatically win the FedExCup if they win the tournament, although the PGA Tour’s point system gives all 30 players a mathematical chance of winning.

Day should be clear of the back pain that caused him to withdraw from the BMW Championship midway through the final round. The Australian has three top 10 finishes in his last five starts at East Lake. Jordan Spieth, who is also listed at +800, is the defending champion, but his showings of late have been consistency decent, rather than spectacular.

Scott leads the PGA in shots gained from tee to green, and has been fourth in the last three FedExCup events. The Australian is the epitome of consistency.

Casey is 2-for-2 at placing in the top five of this event, and was second at the BMW and Deutsche Bank tournaments. The Englishman is ineligible for the Ryder Cup, so this is a chance to finish his season on a high note.

Reed has finished 19th and 27th in two career Tour championships. A player of his caliber will likely figure out the course eventually, but presently that makes him a longshot.

A sidebar to the tournament, of course, is that U.S. Ryder Cup captain Davis Love III will make his final pick on Sunday. Whether that provides motivation or a stifling pressure for the likes of Bubba Watson (+3300) or Ryan Moore (+4000) will be interesting.