2021 PGA Championship First Round Leader Odds & Bets: Market Counting on Sergio Garcia

2021 PGA Championship First Round Leader Odds & Bets: Market Counting on Sergio Garcia article feature image
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Ben Jared/PGA TOUR via Getty Images. Pictured: Sergio Garcia.

Sergio Garcia has strung together some strong first-round performances in recent tournaments, and bettors are hoping he does it again at this week’s PGA Championship at Kiawah Island.

Garcia opened the Byron Nelson with a 7-under round, falling just short of Jordan Spieth and JJ Spaun at 9-under for the opening round leader. He held the first-round lead on his own at THE PLAYERS in March. With odds north of 60-1, he’s one of the biggest liabilities at BetMGM.

According to data released by BetMGM, Garcia has taken more bets to be the opening round leader than any other golfer with 4.5% of all bets, ahead of Spieth and Keegan Bradley, who are each receiving 2.8% of bets.

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First-round leader bets are fun, single-round wagers that often give players with worse odds a better chance. Bettors only have to sweat one round rather than four, and it’s oftentimes easier for a lesser player to compete for 18 holes compared to a full 72.

Bettors tend to target those longer odds, which is why someone like Bradley (66-1) is popular.

It’s also a chance to grab the best players at better odds than full-tournament plays. For example, Spieth is attracting the second-most bets at 25-1. But his odds to win the entire tournament are closer to 16-1 depending on the book.

Garcia and Bradley are in the top-three for total dollars taken on first-round leader, but it’s Cam Smith with the largest handle so far. Smith has put together strong performances in majors, notably the Masters. It seems one bad round has derailed his chances in the past, but with odds around 50-1, bettors are firing away.

Rory McIlroy, the consensus favorite to win the whole tournament, is also the favorite to lead after Round 1. However, his odds are almost double (+2200) to lead after the first round than they are to win the entire thing.

Odds to be First Round Leader

Odds via DraftKings 

Golfer Leader After R1
Rory McIlroy 2200
Jordan Spieth 2800
Justin Thomas 2800
Bryson DeChambeau 3300
Viktor Hovland 3300
Dustin Johnson 3300
Jon Rahm 3300
Xander Schauffele 3300
Tony Finau 4000
Hideki Matsuyama 4000
Collin Morikawa 4000
Daniel Berger 4500
Patrick Reed 4500
Scottie Scheffler 4500
Abraham Ancer 5000
Patrick Cantlay 5000
Paul Casey 5000
Brooks Koepka 5000
Louis Oosthuizen 5000
Webb Simpson 5000
Will Zalatoris 5000
Matthew Fitzpatrick 5500
Cameron Smith 5500
Sam Burns 6000
Tyrrell Hatton 6000
Keegan Bradley 6600
Corey Conners 6600
Tommy Fleetwood 6600
Marc Leishman 6600
Joaquin Niemann 6600
Sungjae Im 6600
Bubba Watson 6600
Alexander Noren 7000
Justin Rose 7000
Stewart Cink 8000
Jason Day 8000
Harris English 8000
Sergio Garcia 8000
Emiliano Grillo 8000
Brian Harman 8000
Billy Horschel 8000
Shane Lowry 8000
Francesco Molinari 8000
Charl Schwartzel 8000
Adam Scott 8000
Cameron Tringale 8000
Matt Wallace 8000
Lee Westwood 8000
Gary Woodland 8000
Lanto Griffin 9000
Garrick Higgo 9000
Charley Hoffman 9000
Jason Kokrak 9000
Ryan Palmer 9000
Si Woo Kim 9000
Kevin Streelman 9000
Bernd Wiesberger 9000
Christiaan Bezuidenhout 10000
Cameron Champ 10000
Rickie Fowler 10000
Talor Gooch 10000
Branden Grace 10000
Max Homa 10000
Zach Johnson 10000
Matt Jones 10000
Chris Kirk 10000
Matt Kuchar 10000
Robert MacIntyre 10000
Kevin Na 10000
Carlos Ortiz 10000
Thomas Pieters 10000
Steve Stricker 10000
Brendon Todd 10000
Joel Dahmen 12500
Cameron Davis 12500
Thomas Detry 12500
Russell Henley 12500
Martin Kaymer 12500
Kevin Kisner 12500
Kyoung-Hoon Lee 12500
Denny McCarthy 12500
Maverick McNealy 12500
Phil Mickelson 12500
Sebastian Munoz 12500
Victor Perez 12500
J.T. Poston 12500
Antoine Rozner 12500
Brendan Steele 12500
Henrik Stenson 12500
Harold Varner III 12500
Danny Willett 12500
Aaron Wise 12500
Wyndham Clark 12500
Dean Burmester 15000
Byeong Hun An 15000
John Catlin 15000
George Coetzee 15000
Dylan Frittelli 15000
Adam Hadwin 15000
Harry Higgs 15000
Mackenzie Hughes 15000
Martin Laird 15000
Ian Poulter 15000
Kalle Samooja 15000
Richy Werenski 15000
Erik van Rooyen 15000
Sam Horsfield 17500
Jason Dufner 20000
Brian Gay 20000
Tom Hoge 20000
Rasmus Hojgaard 20000
Jazz Janewattananond 20000
Takumi Kanaya 20000
Tom Lewis 20000
Adam Long 20000
Peter Malnati 20000
Aaron Rai 20000
Brandon Stone 20000
Robert Streb 20000
Padraig Harrington 25000
Lucas Herbert 25000
Rikuya Hoshino 25000
Kurt Kitayama 25000
Chez Reavie 25000
Andy Sullivan 25000
Sami Välimäki 25000
Chan Kim 30000
Jason Scrivener 30000
Hudson Swafford 30000
Jimmy Walker 30000
Daniel van Tonder 30000
John Daly 35000
Jim Herman 35000
Omar Uresti 35000
YE Yang 35000
Daniel Balin 50000
Peter Ballo 50000
Alex Beach 50000
Rich Beem 50000
Frank Bensel 50000
Tyler Collet 50000
Ben Cook 50000
Mark Geddes 50000
Derek Holmes 50000
Greg Koch 50000
Rob Labritz 50000
Brad Marek 50000
Shaun Micheel 50000
Tim Pearce 50000
Ben Polland 50000
Patrick Rada 50000
Sonny Skinner 50000
Stuart Smith 50000
Joe Summerhays 50000
Brett Walker 50000

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