Golf betting heads to the Big Easy this week. The Zurich Classic hits the TPC of Louisiana, bringing a few of the top players in the world to New Orleans. Here’s a look at the favorites to top the leaderboard:
Luke Donald +800
Donald is playing the best golf of any player on tour right now, coming off a runner-up finish at the Heritage Classic this past weekend. Donald was edged in a playoff by Brandt Snedeker, but still earned his fifth straight Top-10 finish of the season. He has never been to TPC of Louisiana, but his exceptional putting skills – ranked tops in putts per round (1.690) – should help with the course’s challenging greens.
Nick Watney +1,200
Watney has taken some time off since the Masters, leaving golf bettors to wonder if the American can get back on his torrid pace. Watney opened the 2011 season with five straight Top-10 performances, including a win at the WGC-Cadillac Championship back in March. He finished tied for 46th at Augusta, his worst finish of the year, and has been inactive since. He is a former Zurich Classic winner, taking the tournament title in 2007. Last year, Watney skipped the event after missing the cut in 2009 and finishing 42nd in 2008.
Justin Rose +1,500
The young Englishman is quietly making his way up the money standings, currently sitting 23rd in earnings after posting three Top 10s and three other finishes in the Top 15 in his nine outings this season. Rose is coming off a solid performance at the Masters, placing 11th with a 5-under par. He’s been terrific in his approach game, sitting first in greens hit in regulation, which shouldn’t be too tough with the big targets at TPC of Louisiana this week. However, his putting hasn’t been as spot on, ranking 82nd in putts per hole and 51st in birdies per round.
Steve Stricker +1,500
Stricker seems to always be among the notables. He’s coming off an 11th-place showing at Augusta and a fourth-place outing at the Houston Open at the beginning of April. His putting is what sets him apart from the rest of the field – ranked fifth in putts per hole and third in birdies per round – and is the reason why golf bettors should consider his PGA odds this week. Stricker skipped last year’s Zurich Classic but finished seventh at the event in 2009.