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2021 Genesis Invitational: Odds, favorites and sleeper picks

Patrick Cantlay, Viktor Hovland and Max Homa enter the Riviera event with solid form, but Hovland, at 30-1, offers the best value

Is Jordan Spieth back? With two straight top-five finishes, the three-time major champion continues to find his previous world-class form.

Daniel Berger, who won the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am on Sunday, also is happy to continue flying under the radar as one of the most consistent players on the PGA Tour. With his fourth career victory, Berger cracked the top 10 in the FedEx Cup standings and improved to No. 13 in the world ranking. However, he withdrew from this week's Genesis Invitational on Tuesday, the PGA Tour disclosed, without citing a reason.

As for the picks, it was a return to form with Patrick Cantlay and Jason Day both providing top-10 performances and one-time tournament leader Henrik Norlander faltering on the weekend.

We now head down Route 1 to tournament host Tiger Woods' weekend at Riviera for the Genesis Invitational. Even without Woods, who recently underwent back surgery, in the field, the tournament will be loaded with top talent. Eight of the top 10 in the world ranking are entered. The Riv, measuring 7,340 yards and playing to a par of 71, is one of the hardest courses on Tour and favors the longest hitters. It also does not provide any strong trends we can tap into for additional insight, so we’ll look toward value in those playing well right now.

According to William Hill, world No. 1 Dustin Johnson is the clear favorite at 6-1 after ducking out of last week’s AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am after he won the Saudi International. Next up are world No. 2 Jon Rahm, No. 3 Justin Thomas and No. 7 Rory McIlroy, all at 12-1 and looking for their first victories of 2021. To follow, Southern Californian Xander Schauffele, at 14-1, will look to rebound on early season on-course stumbles.

For our favorite, we are going to run it back with Patrick Cantlay at 16-1. He is just outside the top-five favorites but offers the most value, considering the deep field. Cantlay could have won last week, but Berger closed better. He’s in some of the best form of his career and finished fourth here in 2018. Look for Cantlay to have another solid start in The Golden State.


For a high midrange pick, Norwegian Viktor Hovland is trending at 30-1. He’s never played Riviera in competition, but his recent form also is too hard to ignore. Hovland has finished in the top six in four of his last five worldwide starts, including a victory at the Mayakoba Golf Classic. He ranks fifth in the FedEx Cup standings and seventh on the PGA Tour in strokes gained off the tee, which will be important this week. Hovland’s game should translate well.

For a sleeper, we’re also going to play a recent choice in Max Homa, at 60-1. Homa returns to his hometown, where he finished T-5 last year, in excellent form, with four top-25 finishes in his last five starts. He held the 54-hole lead at The American Express and conceded that his swing didn’t “feel great” after finishing T-7 last week. Homa should feel more comfortable at Riviera.

2021 picks scoreboard:

Top 10s: 3
Top 20s: 4

Here are some notable odds, according to William Hill:

Dustin Johnson 6-1
Rory McIlroy 12-1
Jon Rahm 12-1
Justin Thomas 12-1
Xander Schauffele 14-1
Bryson DeChambeau 16-1
Patrick Cantlay 16-1
Brooks Koepka 22-1
Tony Finau 25-1
Viktor Hovland 30-1
Adam Scott 30-1
Collin Morikawa 30-1
Jordan Spieth 33-1
Hideki Matsuyama 33-1
Bubba Watson 45-1
Joaquin Niemann 50-1
Scottie Scheffler 50-1
Marc Leishman 60-1
Max Homa 60-1
Sergio Garcia 60-1
Abraham Ancer 60-1
Will Zalatoris 60-1
Matthew Fitzpatrick 66-1
Carlos Ortiz 70-1
Matthew Wolff 70-1
Russell Henley 75-1
Kevin Na 75-1
Gary Woodland 80-1
Cameron Smith 80-1
Matt Kuchar 80-1
Si-Woo Kim 80-1
Francesco Molinari 80-1
Jason Kokrak 80-1
James Hahn 90-1
Cameron Davis 90-1
Henrik Norlander 90-1
Rickie Fowler 90-1
Sam Burns 100-1
Corey Conners 100-1
Maverick McNealy 100-1
Cameron Tringale 100-1
Lanto Griffin 125-1
Kyoung-Hoon Lee 125-1
Adam Hadwin 125-1
Nate Lashley 125-1
Russell Knox 125-1
Brendon Todd 125-1
Luke List 125-1
Brian Harman 125-1
Alex Noren 125-1
Kevin Streelman 125-1
Brendan Steele 125-1

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