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LIV Golf players unappetizing to bettors during US Open, PGA’s Rory McIlroy favored to win

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Bookies and players took sides ahead of the US Open, overwhelmingly backing PGA golfers. who joined the new Saudi-backed LIV Golf league.

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And they were acquitted after finishing the first round on Thursday at the Brookline Country Club in Massachusetts.

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15 members of LIV Golf, including Phil Mickelson, together scored 53 over par. Only one of these players, Dustin Johnson, finished the day in the top 14.

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Bookmaker Tipico opened Johnson as a 30/1 long-range shot to win before the tournament. After being 2 under par 68, he became the 6th pick 20/1. He is behind LIV Golf’s favorite vocal critic Rory McIlroy (+550), PGA Championship winner Justin Thomas (+900), reigning US Open champion John Ram (+1000), Masters champion Scotty Sheffler (+1300) and another player under 2 years. , Matthew Fitzpatrick (+1500).

McIlroy, 33, said earlier this week some of his colleagues who sought generous compensation for LIV Golf — backed by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who the U.S. government says authorized the killing of Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi in 2018 — likely did so because “their best days behind them.”

McIlroy talked about the conversation and then went for a walk during Thursday’s first round, scoring 3 to 67 to stand. five-way tie for second place behind leader Adam Hadwin (21/1) Canada at -4.

McIlroy’s knockout was aimed primarily at six-time tournament winner, Mickelson, who started with a stunning 200/1 win to win this weekend and was in danger of elimination on Friday after his first round 8-for-78. The 52-year-old Mickelson also finished remotely in the first LIV Golf tournament last week, losing to 37-year-old Masters winner Charl Schwarzel.

RELATED: Charl Schwarzel wins inaugural LIV Golf tournament to win $4.75 million amid ongoing protest

OPINION: Rory McIlroy’s win and a subtle hit on LIV Golf’s Greg Norman was the greatest gift he could give the PGA Tour.

Regarding other members of LIV Golf at their peak, including Johnson and Bryson DeChambeau, McIlroy said: “That’s where it feels like you’re taking the easy way out.”

DeChambeau was +1 and counts as a long-range 85/1 player.

The reaction to LIV Golf and the poor performance of many golfers on that tour led bookmakers to recognize McIlroy, Thomas and Scheffler as favorites to win the US Open. The players made this decision, making these three players the leaders in total tickets and dollars wagered on Caesars Sportsbook.

Rahm made five bets worth at least $1,000 before posting his 1-under 69 on Thursday, with PGA players Will Zalatoris, Cameron Smith and Sam Burns making it into the top five games at Caesars. A player from Nevada placed a $3,000 bet on Burns with a potential win of $54,000.

The stakes certainly explained the feud between PGA and LIV Golf players. However, lead Caesars Sportsbook golf trader Anthony Sallerori said he was stunned to see Johnson drop from a 25/1 opening to 40/1 at Caesars before he started Thursday’s game.

“At the moment he is not in favor with the public, that’s how things are,” Sallerori said.

The relentless criticism of LIV Golf has prompted two-time US Open champion Brooks Kepka, whose brother Chase played last week at the LIV stop, to criticize journalists for asking hard questions, which he says cast a “black cloud” over the event.

“I’m tired of talking. I’m tired of all this,” Kopka said.

Thus, the rivalry between the PGA and the LIV began in earnest as PGA supporters led by McIlroy sought to show their superiority over those who had fled.

MORE: How LIV Golf players performed in the first round of the US Open

Battle of the stakes

The stakes quickly determined an uphill battle for the LIV players at the US Open, first making Johnson the ninth favorite to win and pinning a slew of 80/1 and up labels to others, including Talor Gooch, Sergio Garcia, Kevin Na and Patrick Reed, all of whom finished above par. on Thursday.

At some point on Thursday afternoon, 15 LIV golfers scored a total of +54, a supernatural phenomenon associated with 54 participants who play 54-hole LIV tournaments.

Golf is inherently stressful. The addition of personal divisions fueled by widespread criticism and new rivalry turns the tradition of Father’s Day in the US into an unprecedented must-see event.

Despite being disgusted by Johnson’s defection from LIV Golf, veteran golf journalist Thomas Bonk saw him as a viable opponent even before his first round lived up to that notion.

“Dustin is perfect for the Open at Brookline,” Bonk said. “He can hit the ball straight and putt.”

As Mickelson played to muted crowd support on Thursday, Bonk said he didn’t expect the pressure and criticism to break LIV Golf players because “golfers are pretty introverted in their mindset.”

But given the harshness of the track and the palpable resentment, Bonk suggested, “It’s not the nervousness that will help here.”

GolfWeek’s Adam Shupack said the friction dynamics of the players weren’t as important as the poor results that Johnson, Mickelson and Reid had before Brooklyn.

“Most LIV golfers haven’t shown much form on the PGA Tour lately,” Shupack said. — Johnson, apart from a stellar performance at last year’s Ryder Cup, was a shadow of a player who won the 2020 Masters.

“But nothing scares a DJ. The same goes for Patrick Reid, who seems to thrive when he’s at the center of controversy.”

Worthwhile bet

Respected golf handicapper Rufus Peabody tested all participants in over 100,000 simulations and said that Johnson is a 43/1 underdog.

“Whether you can find a good rate depends on the price you can find,” Peabody said cryptically, because he likes to keep his selection to himself.

Shchupak named 30/1 Choice Burns (+1), current PGA Player of the Year and FedEx Cup champion Patrick Cantley (+2), and 39/1 Max Home (-1) as his three pre-tournament favorites. Burns has won three PGA tournaments this season, including two weeks ago. Homa won twice.

“My top pick is the underrated Burns…he is currently ranked 9th in the world, has a full game and is just starting to come around,” Shchupak said. “He watched his best friend, Scotty Sheffler, win the Masters in April and thought, ‘Why not me?’

“Homa is another player who keeps his finger on the pulse. He has an iron game and the ability to play an important role in the Major. When he starts the hunt, he shows that he knows how to find the winner’s circle. Cantley has been an enigma at the Majors, finishing in the top 10 only twice out of 21 Major starts, but I remain convinced that it is a matter of when, not if, he wins the Major.”

Bonk sided with Collin Morikawa (-1), who is now 20/1 in Typical.

After the US Open, LIV Golf players will once again part ways with their former brethren to next play in Portland, Oregon on June 30th.

US bookmakers, including Typicalhave not yet received approval from several state gambling regulators to offer bets on the LIV Golf tour, although it is legal in Nevada and Arizona.

“Being a new league is part of that, but with the influence of Saudi Arabia, I don’t think (the regulators) don’t like it either.” Typical spokesman Sunny Gupta said. “It appears that there is an opportunity for (states) to take an arbitrary stance on this issue because of the Saudis.”

Gupta said the only thing TypicalRegulators in New Jersey and Colorado have said that betting on LIV Golf is “still under review.”

“I understand why they weren’t ready for the first stop (last week in London), but I would be shocked if it didn’t happen next time,” Gupta said.

Instead of this, Typical and other stores offer one-on-one and four-on-four bets, in which PGA players oppose LIV Golf participants. At BetMGM, for example, Johnson was a tied underdog against -120 favorite Hideki Matsuyama.

Johnson hit number 17 on Thursday, passing Matsuyama with two strikes to take the lead.

As for the persistence of the PGA-LIV rivalry, Bonk said he’s not sure how long the fire and verbal fight will burn.

“Unless Dustin Johnson wins,” he said.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: US Open odds: bookmakers consider tensions between PGA and LIV feud



Source: sports.yahoo.com

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