The Honda Classic Picks and Predictions

Updated: March 17, 2021

After a wild golf betting week of marquee missed cuts and an incredible 36-hole run from Justin Thomas, what will the PGA Tour do for an encore this week?

While the Honda Classic boasts a far less impressive field than the one we saw at last week’s Players Championship, there’s still plenty of star power making the trip to PGA National. And they’re going to need to bring their collective “A” games to the Tom Fazio-designed, Jack Nicklaus-renovated course, which is considered to be one of the toughest challenges in golf—and with breezy winds expected for at least part of this year’s event, the task becomes even more difficult.

We preview the field, break down the course and give our golf picks, predictions and best bets for the Honda Classic.

PGA National betting stats that matter

This might be the toughest course of the season, other than what we’ll see at the major championships. Fairways are narrower than the majority of courses, there are dangerous hazards all over the course, and the greens are difficult to hold. The average greens-in-regulation rate at PGA National sits around 59 percent—a whopping 10 percent below the tour average.

In short: Don’t be surprised to see the winning score come in well below double digits under par.

It might seem like hyperbole to suggest that SG: Approach is everything this week, but it honestly is. Errant tee shots are punished significantly, and even average iron play will result in a whole lot of missed greens or potential three-putts.

Par-3 Scoring will also loom large—particularly on Holes 15-17. Known as “The Bear Trap,” this three-hole stretch is among the most difficult in the entire tour and features two unforgiving Par-3s that will likely go a long way toward deciding who wins this tournament.

The Honda Classic outright winner bets

Unlike most events, where you’ll find a handful of golfers at or near the top tier, only three entrants in the Honda Classic have odds below +2,000—creating plenty of profit potential if you can connect on your outright plays. Daniel Berger comes in as the favorite at +1,100 following a T9 performance at The Players Championship. He’s joined atop the odds leaderboard by Sungjae Im (who posted a T17 last week) at +1,400 and Joaquin Niemann at +1,800.

Who will win The Honda Classic? Here’s our best guess:

Joaquin Niemann (+1,800)

Niemann’s 70-70 finish at The Players Championship was impressive, given how difficult TPC Sawgrass played over the final 36 holes. And he has the kind of game that could put him in contention this week: He ranks inside the Top 50 in SG: Approach and inside the Top 10 in Par-3 success rate.

His driving accuracy leaves a little to be desired, but he’s such a good ball-striker (particularly with his irons) and should give himself more birdie opportunities than the majority of the field.

Russell Henley (+2,800)

Frankly, it’s a mild surprise that Henley isn’t higher on the odds list given his pedigree. He won this event back in 2014 (when the greens were actually 30 percent smaller, if you can believe that) while finishing eighth last year and posting a pair of Top-25 results in 2018 and 2019.

And while the results haven’t necessarily been there in 2021, he does rank sixth on the PGA Tour in Strokes Gained: Approach (0.863) in 34 measured rounds. In this field, he’s a terrific value pick.

The Honda Classic matchup predictions

Luke List Over Brandon Wu (-115)

This pick comes down to experience. List has two Top-10 results at PGA National (including a second-place finish in 2018) and, despite missing the cut each of the past two years, has a game that’s well-suited to this course, ranking ninth in SG: Off-the-Tee.

More importantly, he’s matched up against a player that has thrived on the Korn Ferry Tour but has yet to encounter a challenge as great as PGA National. Look for List to use his veteran savvy to win this intriguing matchup.

The Honda Classic prop bets

Top Englishman: Lee Westwood (+115)

It’s impossible to ignore just how good Westwood has looked in recent weeks, entering PGA National on the heels of back-to-back runner-up finishes at the Arnold Palmer Invitational and The Players Championship.

He now ranks just outside the Top 30 in SG: Total (1.001), and is coming off a fourth-place finish at last year’s Honda Classic (his fourth career Top-10 finish here). He might not post another second-place result, but he should do more than enough to finish as the low Englishman.

Daniel Berger Top-10 Finish (+110)

We couldn’t put together a Honda Classic betting preview without finding a place for the tournament favorite—especially given how well he has played. Berger has posted five Top-10 showings in his last seven PGA Tour events, including a victory at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am.

Berger has one of the most well-rounded games in this week’s field and while outright bets are always a tricky proposition, we believe a Berger Top-10 pick is one of the safest plays on the board.

Ian Poulter to Miss Cut (+150)

Poulter has been playing with fire for most of the 2020-21 PGA Tour season, and it caught up to him in a major way last week as he stumbled to an opening-round 77 and missed The Players Championship cut by four shots.

He has been one of the worst players on tour in SG: Approach (-0.691, 197th), and ranks outside the Top 150 in greens in regulation. Those struggles will almost certainly be magnified at PGA National, making Poulter a prime cut candidate.

The Honda Classic betting card

  • Joaquin Niemann Outright (+1,800)
  • Russell Henley Outright (+2,800)
  • Luke List Over Brandon Wu (-115)
  • Top Englishman: Lee Westwood (+115)
  • Daniel Berger Top-10 Finish (+110)
  • Ian Poulter to Miss Cut (+150)

Where can I bet on the PGA?

You can bet on PGA odds at many online and casino sportsbooks, including PGA outrights, matchup bets, and other golf props. Head over to our best-suggested sportsbooks for the top spots to bet on PGA odds in your area.

Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *