The American Express - Preview and Best Bets

Another week, another golf tournament to get into! Let’s start with a quick recap from the Sony Open last week. I wasn’t able to hit any outrights or first round leaders but found a bit of success in some of my other bets. I finished 3-2 in full tournament h2h for a profit. I also hit 3 of my 6 top 20s for a profit. So overall a decent tournament. Hitting outrights is extremely difficult, so making you bread and butter on the matchups/T20s is huge. I did live bet Hideki Sunday morning at +220. I thought the bet was surly dead when Henley held a 5 shot lead with only 9 holes remaining. So, shout out Deki on that amazing comeback. The shot he hit in the playoff is one of the better shots I have ever seen. 277 yards out he put it to inside 3 feet. An absolutely filthy shot from Deki.

Onto the American Express tournament we have this week. We leave Hawaii and head to California. I’ll be upfront and honest I am not a huge fan of this tournament. This is a pro-am style set up. So not only are there 150 pros, but there are also 150 amateurs in the field. So, there is A LOT of golfers, which makes this tournament almost hard to watch. On top of that, this golf tournament takes place over three different golf course. Each player will play each course once, and then there is a cut before the final round on Sunday. So, there is certainly a lot to consider on this one and those are some of the main reasons I don’t care for this tournament. I am still going to place a few bets, but the card will be much lighter on this one. Ill be looking to live bet a winner on Sunday if none of my guys are in the race.

Let’s briefly go over the courses that are being played. I am not going to go as deep into the breakdown because I simply don’t care that much, and I don’t think anyone reading this will either. The courses are PGA West Stadium Course, PGA West Tournament Course and La Quinta Country Club. The Stadium course is the one that any golfer that makes the cut will play on Sunday, so we will see that course twice. To kind of generalize the courses and what we will be looking at this week. All 3 courses are par 72s and are rather short. They are “desert style” golf courses. The greens are Bermuda, but during this time of the season they are overseeded with Rye so the grass doesn’t die. Essentially that means they are going to be much smoother and not play like your typical Bermuda. We have a decent amount of water in play, so accuracy will be more important this week. I do anticipate the guys going low here once again.


Talor Gooch +2900

Matthew Wolff +3100

Seamus Power +3300

Will Zalatoris +5000

Like I said earlier, I am taking it a bit lighter this week. I am rolling with these four guys above. Gooch has played the last two weeks and his form has been pretty decent. I am looking for him to pick the putting up a little this week with the easier greens to put on. Seamus Power is in a similar situation where he has played the last two weeks. He finished third last week and have been striking the ball pretty well. Those two are plays based on recent form and two guys I like to have a good shot.

The other two, are guys who we haven’t seen in a bit. Matthew Wolff has proven he can compete with the best of them. He is a Cali kid so he should be comfortable out there. The guy hasn’t played in a bit, but his last showings in the fall were mighty impressive, so I’d like to back him this week. Lastly is my guy Will Zalatoris. I love Willy Z and as soon as I saw him on the odds board this week it was a play for me. He’s another guy who hasn’t played in a while, but when he does, he strikes it so well. I look for him to have a breakout year this year, so let’s get behind him this week.

Top 20s

Adam Hadwin +250

Hayden Buckley +400

Tom Hoge +400

Kramer Hickock +450

For the top 20s I am taking some longer shots in this huge, but not incredibly talented field. Adam Hadwin is 2ndoverall in scoring average at this event in the since 2016, so let’s take a shot at him in the top 20. Buckley finished 12th last week and has had some success in his most recent outings. He gains strokes off the tee and on approach, which should help him in this event. Tom Hoge missed the cut last week but was showing solid form before that. He generally does well at these “desert style” golf courses. He’s finished top 20 in 3 of his last 6 events including a 4th at the RSM. Lastly, we have Kramer Hickock. He finished 20th last week at the Sony. He finished 2nd last year and lost in a playoff at the Travelers. So, he has some pedigree to him. Let’s hope he sneaks into the top 20 this week.

H2H Full Tournament Matchups

Power > Henley -110

I am only playing one matchup this week. I could do some more digging around, but like I said im not feeling this tourney too much, so I’d rather focus my efforts elsewhere. This was a play that had to be made. We watched Henley melt last week giving up a 5-stroke lead with 5 remaining. I think that does a lot to your confidence, especially in the short term. So, lets fade Russ with a guy we already like this week in Power.

That’s all for this week’s preview and picks. As always tune into our podcast Smokin’ Greens for more breakdown from the tournament. I will tweet out any live plays I make from my twitter as well.



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