Recap of Last Weeks Bets
|To Win||Jon Rahm||Lost|
|Tournament Match Bet||Viktor Hovland||Lost|
Profit/Loss (This week) – Loss of $20 to a $10 Stake
Profit/Loss (Overall) – Loss of $381.80 to a $10 Stake
On to this week’s event.
This week, the PGA Tour heads to Riviera Country Club for the newest round of the Genesis Invitational. The Genesis Invitational was initially held in 1926 as the Los Angeles Open, but it is now known as the Genesis Invitational for sponsorship purposes. The Genesis Invitational has one of the most significant prizes on the PGA Tour, so it’s a beautiful way for golfers to kick star their 2022 season on a high-quality course.
At Riviera, one of the most popular and historic destinations on the Tour, a loaded field is expected to compete, but Tiger Woods is sure to command a significant portion of the attention. As tournament host, the 15-time major champion will be present. Last year, shortly after this event, Woods was involved in a near-fatal vehicle accident.
The Genesis Invitational wraps up the 2022 West Coast tour, bringing the year’s strongest elite field to Los Angeles. Collin Morikawa, Patrick Cantlay, Viktor Hovland, Rory McIlroy, Dustin Johnson, Xander Schauffele, Justin Thomas, Scottie Scheffler, Hideki Matsuyama, and Cameron Smith are also in the field, led by world number one Jon Rahm.
Riviera is a 7,322-yard old-style golf course with a 35-36 Par 71 rating. It’s known as ‘Hogan’s Alley,’ and it’s a classic course with tight, uneven tree-lined fairways and fast, 7,500-square-foot green complexes with plenty of surrounding run-off areas for too aggressive or wayward approach shots.
Longer hitters will benefit from the course’s difficulty in locating fairways, though the punishment is more likely to be blocked approach shots than thick, lush rough. The course has some of the deepest bunkers on the Tour, and fairway positioning is crucial since trees can block approach shots. Riviera is consistently one of the most challenging courses to hit greens, and putting, especially from 10 feet and in on the fast Poa Annua greens, is difficult.
On to our picks for this year…
Jordan Spieth +4000
Spieth kind of fits the bill of previous winners such as J. B. Holmes, Bubba Watson, and Dustin Johnson. He certainly has the long game to take a lot of the fairway bunkers out of the equation. He has had a good run at Pebble Beach recently, and if he can make a few long putts, he should give a good account of himself this week.
Top 10 Finish
Beau Hossler +1400
Beau Hossler showed what a great touch he has at The AT&T recently, and although he is undoubtedly erratic, he does have form here, having placed 15th a couple of years back. He’s a California native, so he will certainly have played this course on numerous occasions. If the 26-year-old can keep his emotions in check and make a few putts, he could do well this week.
Group Betting (McIlroy, Schauffele, Scheffler, Smith, Hovland)
Cameron Smith +300
This season, Cameron Smith has been on fire as he has three top-ten finishes to his name, and he lifted the trophy at the Sentry a couple of tournaments back. He also knows his way around this golf course, having placed fourth here last season and sixth a few years back. He’s a much better golfer nowadays, and that could see him go one step further this week. There is no doubt he is in a tough group of players here, but for me, that shows his qualities more than anything else, as he is obviously in high regard. Arguably his most significant attribute is his putting, and on greens as big as these, many of the field will be faced with lengthy putts, so being useful with the blade will come in handy.
Top 40 Finish
Andrew Landry +275
Although he has missed a few cuts this season, there is little doubt that Landry possesses talent. He has finished fourth at the Sanderson Farms Championship and seventh at Mayakoba. The last two times he has played this tournament, he has finished inside the top 40, and I believe he can do that again this week. He is another useful player with the putter, and he has an excellent 3-putt avoidance record. If he can keep it on the dance floor, he should easily make the top 40 here.