PGA Tour Betting and Odds Preview for This Weekend’s Honda Classic
Keith Mitchell returns to the site of his lone PGA Tour victory this week, but the world’s 114th-ranked player is a significant longshot to defend his title at The Honda Classic.
The Florida Swing begins at the Champion course at PGA National in Palm Beach Gardens, with several of the world’s top players taking the week off after a busy West Coast slate and last week’s WGC-Mexico Championship to begin 2020.
Mitchell sank a 16-foot birdie putt on the final hole last year to fend off Brooks Koepka and Rickie Fowler.
Mitchell followed that up with a pair of top-10s in his next six events, but it has been a difficult stretch since. He has missed three of his past seven cuts and has only two top-20 finishes in his past 20 events.
At +7000 by PointsBet, Mitchell is grouped with the likes of journeymen Bud Cauley, Vaughn Taylor and Luke List.
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The Honda Classic’s Best Bets to Win this Weekend
With five consecutive top-20 finishes worldwide, including a T18 last week, 11th-ranked Tommy Fleetwood is the betting favorite at most sportsbooks. That includes +1100 at and +1100 at BetAmerica. He is the only player in the top 20 of the official world golf rankings who lacks a win on the PGA Tour.
The Englishman is favored over Koepka, the top-ranked player in the field at No. 3 and the only top 10 player in the field. Koepka (+1100 at PointsBet) is still trying to recover his form following fall knee surgery and a subsequent setback.
He posted a T17 at the Saudi International before struggling to a T42 at The Genesis Invitational two weeks ago. Koepka and Mitchell will be paired with Matthew Wolff (+7000), one of the Tour’s young guns, for the first two days.
England’s Justin Rose has slipped to No. 13 and is coming off a missed cut at the Farmers Insurance Open and a T56 at the Genesis. Minus a win in more than a year, Rose is being offered at +2200 by PointsBet and +2000 by BetAmerica as he tees it up at The Honda for the first time in five years, when he missed the cut.
The two Englishmen will be paired with Billy Horschel on Thursday and Friday. Horschel is a sneaky bet at +2500 by both books. He is coming off consecutive top-10s on Tour, including a T9 in Mexico City.
One of the other featured groups includes Fowler, Viktor Hovland (+2500 at both) and Joaquin Niemann (+5000 at both). After a rough stretch, Hovland picked up his first Tour win in last week’s alternate field event in Puerto Rico, while Niemann earned his maiden victory during the fall swing.
Fowler (+1300 at PointsBet, +1200 at BetAmerica) has four career top-10s at The Honda, including a win in 2017 and last year’s runner-up finish. After a stretch of three top-10s, Fowler has a missed cut and a T37 in his past two starts. But he has typically fared well in Florida, including a win at The Players in 2015.
With few of the world’s elite players teeing it up this week, it opens the door for much of the field.
Some Longshot Bets and Betting Odds for this Weekend’s Honda Classic
Sungjae Im is still seeking his first PGA Tour victory. However, he’s the reigning Rookie of the Year and has posted strong finishes against some solid fields over the past six months. That includes a T3 at the ZOZO Championship – won by Tiger Woods, a T11 at the WGC-HSBC Champions and a T10 at The American Express.
It’s a matter of when – not if – the highly-talented South Korean breaks through. So, it’s understandable why he’s +2800 at both books.
Potential sleepers include big-hitting Wyndham Clark. He, too, has yet to win on the PGA Tour, but was in contention at Pebble Beach (T18) and The Genesis (T17). Clark needs to prove he can put four solid rounds together, but offers good odds at +6000 at PointsBet and +5500 at BetAmerica.
As evidenced by Mitchell last year, The Honda can be a tricky proposition because few top players enter it on an annual basis. It’s often used as a rotating event on their schedules to satisfy Tour requirements, with local residents Koepka and Fowler among the few who regularly use it as a tune-up for the spring.
Don’t be surprised to see the first page of the leaderboard littered with talented youngsters and veterans in solid form.
Feeling frisky? Lucas Bjerregaard (+25000 at PointsBet) has missed all four of his cuts in 2020 – including in Puerto Rico. On the flip side, the Dane finished T12 at The Honda last year before knocking off Woods en route to a T4 at the WGC-Match Play two weeks ago.
Then again, he has two top-20s against 16 missed cuts since.
Perhaps sticking with the top players and hot hands is the more advisable route after all.