Dustin Johnson

2017 Masters betting preview: Dustin Johnson leads tournament odds

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The odds to win the 2017 Masters could change as often as the weather patterns in Augusta, Georgia, this week, which is saying something.

As the world No. 1 who happens to have also won three tournaments in a row, Dustin Johnson rates as the +550 favorite on the tournament futures board, according to sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.

One factor that is going to have a big effect on scores at the season’s first major – and perhaps work to the advantage of longer hitters who don’t need so much roll from their tee shots – is that heavy rain could lead to some moist fairways at Augusta National Golf Club.

That might help Johnson, one of the most powerful men on the PGA Tour. It could also benefit Rory McIlroy (+700), who is seeking to become the sixth man to complete the career Grand Slam. The native of Northern Ireland has also won all of his major titles in dreary conditions.

Jordan Spieth (+800) has tied for second and won the green jacket at the past two Masters and is always a good compromise choice. Jon Rahm (+2500) is the flavor of the month after being runner-up (to Dustin Johnson) at the World Golf Championship Match Play event, but do keep in mind that the 22-year-old Spaniard is a Masters newbie.

It’s also good to seek out consistency over recent weeks when picking someone to pay out on the golf betting lines in a best-of-the-best event that has also not had a repeat winner in 15 years. Both Rickie Fowler (+1800) and Justin Rose (+2500) have three recent top-four finishes.

While the demographics of recent winners has skewed young, three-time champion Phil Mickelson (+2800) can still be a threat.

Jason Day (+1800) and Hideki Matsuyama (+1800) also finished in the top 10 in 2016. Matsuyama has had a wonky short game of late, which is also the reason to shy away from Adam Scott (+3500). Henrik Stenson (+3000) is high up in the world rankings, but has never fared well at Augusta.

Among those with longer odds, Paul Casey (+4000) has finished tied for fourth and tied for sixth at the past two Masters. At age 39, he also knows his window to earn the green jacket could be rather short. Casey likely represents the best chance of another Englishman winning, given that defending champion Danny Willett (+12500) has struggled in recent PGA events. Another golfer out of England, Tommy Fleetwood (+8000), will go into his first Masters buoyed by some eye-popping recent results, including second at the WGC Mexico event.

One of the deep sleepers worth considering includes Daniel Berger (+7500), who tied for 10th in 2016. Masters rookie Adam Hadwin (+8000) also got attention when he carded a 59 earlier this year.

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.