PGA Championship: Xander Schauffele, Patrick Cantlay The Biggest Movers Ahead Of Year’s First Major

Posted By FairwayJay on August 5, 2020
Xander Schauffele Patrick Cantlay PGA Championship odds

The strongest field since golf’s comeback is ready to fire at TPC Harding Park in San Francisco for the PGA Championship as the big-name favorites are taking most the win-wager action ahead of the year’s first major tournament.

Rory McIlroy has seen his odds to win adjust the most, moving up from +1100 to +1500 at DraftKings Sportsbook. Rory joins two PGA Tour stars shooting for their first major title in Jon Rahm (+1500) and Bryson DeChambeau (+1500).

Justin Thomas (+900) was the favorite at DraftKings on Wednesday while Brooks Koepka sat at +1100 at FanDuel Sportsbook.

The biggest mover in the outright win market has been Xander Schauffele, who was down to +1800 to win the PGA Championship at DraftKings, FanDuel and BetMGM on Wednesday afternoon as one of the ticket count leaders. One BetMGM bettor got Schauffele at +2600 and wagered $1000 to win $2600.

Also, Patrick Cantlay, another Top 10 player in the world golf rankings, saw his odds adjust upward to +2500 at DraftKings and +2700 at FanDuel on Wednesday. A BetMGM bettor picked Cantlay up at +2900 and wagered $1,200 ton win $34,800 with one other Top 10 player, Webb Simpson, taking a $1,000 win bet to win $26,000.

Leading into Wednesday, BetMGM informed TheLines that Koepka was the market leader with the highest win bet percentage (7.85%). The top foursome of players with the highest handle percentage of PGA Championship win bets are Koepka (14.23%), Thomas (11.25%), Schaffele (10.2%) and Cantlay (9.39%). DraftKings informed TheLines that Koepka is now the runaway leader in both percentage of win bets (11%) and handle (15%). Woods (8%), Schaffele (8%), McIlroy (7%) and DeChambeau (6%) round out the leaders in win percentage handle.

Of the past eight PGA Championship winners, seven were ranked in the Top 25 of the Official World Golf Ranking, and five were inside the Top 5. The 2017 PGA Championship winner, Thomas, leads the top of the betting board for the 2020 event following his win last week at the WGC FedEx St. Jude. Two-time defending champion Koepka and two time PGA Championship winner McIlroy are also betting favorites.

PGA Championship odds boosts: Will Tiger make the cut?

Tiger Woods will also be back in action this week and there are plenty of props promos to play for his second tournament since the PGA Tour restart in June. Woods last won the PGA Championship in 2007 and is a four-time winner of the event. Woods was +3700 to win at FanDuel and was +3300 at DraftKings on Wednesday.

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2020 PGA Championship odds

PGA Championship Winner

Game
08/06/2020
(Eastern Time)
(EST)
Justin Thomas
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+900
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+1100
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+1000
Brooks Koepka
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+1100
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+1100
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+1000
Bryson Dechambeau
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+1500
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+1600
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+1800
Rory McIlroy
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+1500
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+1400
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+1400
Jon Rahm
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+1500
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+1500
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+1500
Xander Schauffele
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+1800
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+1800
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+1800
Dustin Johnson
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+2300
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+2300
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+2200
Patrick Cantlay
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+2500
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+2700
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+2500
Daniel Berger
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+3000
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+3500
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+4000
Webb Simpson
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+3000
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+3000
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+2500
Collin Morikawa
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+3300
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+3000
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+3000
Tiger Woods
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+3300
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+3700
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+3500
Jason Day
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+3500
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+4000
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+4000
Matthew Fitzpatrick
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+3500
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+4000
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+4500
Rickie Fowler
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+3500
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+4000
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+4000
Hideki Matsuyama
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+4200
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+4000
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+4000
Tommy Fleetwood
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+5000
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+4000
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+4500
Patrick Reed
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+5000
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+4600
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+4500
Gary Woodland
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+5000
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+4500
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+5000
Abraham Ancer
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+5500
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+6500
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+6600
Tony Finau
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+5500
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+5000
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+5000
Tyrell Hatton
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+5500
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+5000
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+5000
Viktor Hovland
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+6000
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+4500
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+5000
Billy Horschel
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+6600
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+11000
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+9000
Sergio Garcia
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+7000
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+8500
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+8000
Scottie Scheffler
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+7000
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+8500
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+10000

Stats and factors beyond the numbers for betting favorites

This year’s PGA Championship is a unique test. Total driving stats, off the tee and accuracy are important when evaluating players and strokes gained stats. There will be a greater penalty for missing fairways this week, as the course setup had to be toughened to keep the top pros from scoring with ease. Thus, the fairways have been narrowed and rough grown out. In addition, the putting surfaces are slanted 30-45 degrees from the fairway and will have more shallow approaches into greens with more pins tucked into tougher spots.

Beyond the course setup, stats and other factors when evaluating the numbers and betting odds is the weather and human elements of emotional and physical toll on players. That includes mental preparation and playing without fans lining the fairways in a spectator free environment.

Also, a change to cooler temperatures in the 60s and cool, damp air is an adjustment to factor into the players preparation and betting. Clouds and some morning fog with more damp air will be in play this week. Longer hitters will have an advantage if they can keep the ball in the fairway more consistently, but there will be less roll and distance than the players have seen in the past two months playing in hotter and faster conditions. The golf course will play far longer than the 7200-7400 setup each day.

Last week’s WGC FedEx St. Jude event was very hot and humid in Memphis. Justin Thomas won and Brooks Koepka finished second with both players battling hard to the final hole with a chance to win.

Adjusting to weather, grasses and ball trajectory and distance control plays a bigger part at this week’s major championship than recent tournaments since the PGA Tour restart in June.

Total driving stats show Rahm and DeChambeau Top 10 on Tour, and McIlroy No. 30. Strokes gained off the tee shows DeChambeau No. 1 with Rahm and McIlroy Top 10 and Thomas and Koepka Top 20.

Among the Top 10 Par 4 scoring leaders this season are DeChambeau, Thomas and McIlroy. But we’re talking the very slightest of separation with all three averaging between 3.89 and 3.95, with Simpson (3.87) the leader and  Rahm (3.97) in the Top 20 on Tour.

Thomas and many golfers figure to struggle more off the tee this week in their pursuit of hitting more fairways. The corridors to drive through off the tee make Harding Park a unique challenge as it’s visually awesome with incredible Cypress trees framing a number of holes. Thomas likes to cut the ball, as does McIlroy, and there are many doglegs at Harding Park. Thomas’ strokes gained approach stats lead the Tour which makes him a big threat if his tee ball is on this week.

A course fit to compare and use when evaluating players is the 2019 US Open at Pebble Beach. It features similar grasses, smaller greens and the importance of driving the ball well. Gary Woodland was the winner, and Koepka finished second. Rahm tied for third and McIlroy tied for ninth. Thomas missed the cut.

The leading favorites are the popular players when betting again this week at the PGA Championship. But beyond the stats and biggest bets at FanDuel, DraftKings and BetMGM are many other capable contenders that can climb up the leaderboard to cash in on Top 10 or 20 finishing position bets or steal the show at Harding Park. The PGA Championship is set for a huge week of wagering, including record in-play betting throughout the tournament.

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FairwayJay

FairwayJay is a leading national sports and gaming analyst and is recognized as one of the sports industry's most insightful professionals. Jay has pursued his passions and maintained a pulse on the sports, gaming and poker industries while living in Las Vegas for nearly two decades. He's been a regular featured guest on sports and gaming radio shows, podcasts and produces sports betting and related industry articles and content for various sites and sources.

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