2019 Shriners Open Preview, Betting Odds, and Prediction
by Kent Whitaker Scores & Statson
Cameron Champ secured an emotional win last week at the Safeway Open for his second PGA Tour victory. Champ and his father hugged and cried following the win while talking on the phone with Champ’s grandfather who is dying from cancer. Champ was able to stay focused enough to play and that focus garnishes him a +4000 heading into the Shriners Open weekend but the top spot for winning outright goes to Brooks Koepka.
Koepka comes into the Open as the only player under +1000 as Patrick Cantlay follows him at +1200. The former Florida State player is coming off a season last year that saw him winning THE CJ CUP @ NINE BRIDGES, the PGA Championship, and the World Golf Championships-FedEx St. Jude Invitational. Even though this is his first event of the new season he’s still the top-ranked golfer according to the Official World Golf Rankings (OWGR).
Like the Safeway Open last week, the Shriners Open has an increasingly stronger field as more and more players come back from the short break. The top-five golfers favored to win outright according to Intertops is a quick indicator of that. Players such as Phil Mickelson, Tony Finau, Bubba Watson, Hideki Matsuyama, and others are all further down the complete odds list below. Here’s the top-five.
Plenty of returning Winners and Contenders
The Shriners Open has several former winners and contenders in the field including Bryson DeChambeau who is set to defend his win here last year. If Jim Furyk, at +8000, can pull out the win it will be his fourth at the Shriners Open. His last came back in 1999. The reason this is important is that Furyk is the only player with repeat wins at this event. The only player to come close is Patrick Cantlay won the tournament in 2018 but lost to DeChambeau last season by one stroke.
1 stroke over Patrick Cantlay
Playoff over Alex Čejka, Kim Meen-whee
2 strokes over Brooks Koepka
1 stroke over Jason Bohn, Alex Čejka, Patton Kizzire, Kevin Na, Brett Stegmaier, Cameron Tringale
2 strokes over Kevin Streelman
6 strokes over Jason Bohn, Ryo Ishikawa
Predicting the Shriners Open
Bryson DeChambeau comes in as the defending Shriners Open Champion and a season that started with plenty of top-ten finishes. He began to backslide slightly towards the end of the year with more and more events where he carded outside of the 20th position and he missed the cut at the Military Tribute at The Greenbriar. He finished last season ranked at 113 in greens in regulation which is not a stat that looks good heading into Summerlin.
Patrick Cantlay has shown that he often has command of his entire bag and this is an early test of what he can show in the new season. He’s a former Shriner Champion and came close to repeating that feat last year. Cantlay is now ranked 7th on the OWGR list and is expected to continue to build on a successful run last season. The key stat for Cantlay is his No. 4 ranking for Birdie average which is 4.4 and Summerlin is a course where that can come in handy.
Brooks Koepka comes in as the tournament favorite and he’s the No. 1 ranked golfer in the world. His 2017 showing at the Shriners was impressive as he was within two strokes of the win. Koepka is famous for not overdoing things when it comes to practicing prior to an opening round. So, the Shriners maybe his practice session for the beginning of the season! You will see a player named Koepka taking in practice time as his younger brother Chase is also in the Shriners field.
TPC at Summerlin is located just outside of Las Vegas and plays a Par 71 at 7,255 yards. The look is amazingly green compared to other dessert courses with rolling green fairways dotted with bunkers and plenty of trees. There are plenty of dirt patches with rocks and native grasses but those hazards are pushed off to the sides. The player that wins the Shriners Open will be the one that takes full advantage of well-placed tee shots. There’s a reason TPC Summerlin is called a second-shot course.