Updated 2022 Genesis Invitational Odds & Longshot Picks: Time to Bet Tony Finau & Kevin Na?
Sam Greenwood/Getty Images. Pictured: Tony Finau.
Click here for full updated Genesis Invitational odds from PointsBet
|Si Woo Kim||+6600|
|Erik Van Rooyen||+10000|
|Harold Varner III||+10000|
|Andrew D. Putnam||+17500|
|Min Woo Lee||+20000|
|Mito Guillermo Pereira||+20000|
|J. J. Spaun||+30000|
The PGA TOUR’s next stop might not have the festive pizzazz that we saw on display at the WM Phoenix Open in Scottsdale this past week, but there are plenty of reasons to be excited about the golf we are about to see.
The Genesis Invitational has become one of the tentpole events in the early season calendar featuring many of the TOUR’s biggest names.
A stacked field of contenders means there are plenty of players with exciting odds further down the board. Finding players who can handle the unique tests of Riviera Country Club could lead to a profitable Sunday for smart bettors.
Tony Finau +6000
This event offers a chance for Tony Finau to get some redemption. Last season, he had a great chance to win the Genesis Invitational, earning a spot in a playoff against Max Homa. Finau looked like a shoo-in when Homa’s tee shot bounced directly behind a tree, but Homa miraculously found a way to get up and down, tie the hole, and win the event on the next playoff hole.
Finau may not have collected the win in 2021, but it was another one of his patented close calls. Here at Riviera he has had several chances to compete on Sunday. Not only was he the runner-up last year, but he was T13 in 2019 and T2 in 2018.
His 2022 season has yet to take flight, but this event offers an opportunity for him to get the ball rolling. I’m happy to nab a top 20 player in the world at odds this high.
March Leishman +6000
Riviera Country Club never plays like the typical PGA Tour track. The firm greens and architectural quirks slow down the biggest bombers, instead favoring golfers with some extra thought behind their shots.
Marc Leishman fits that bill and has played well at Riviera in the past. Leishman earned top five finishes here in both 2019 and 2016. He’s also made the cut each of the last two years at the Genesis Invitational.
His success at this course is backed up by his recent strong play on Tour. Leishman has made the cut in all seven events he’s played in the 2022 FedEx Cup season, including the T16 finish at Torrey Pines in his last start in the States.
Kevin Na +7500
Riviera Country Club is home to a tricky golf course that requires a deft pair of hands around the greens. According to analytics from DataGolf, Strokes Gained: Around the Green contributes to 19 percent of the difference in scores at this event on average, starkly above the 14 percent at the average PGA Tour event. Last year, that number at this event was over 22 percent.
That has me eyeing players with great short games, and none has been better recently than Na. Whether you use the last six months or the last calendar year as the cut-off date, Na has led the golf world in Strokes Gained: Around the Green, per DataGolf. In the last year, he’s gained +0.74 strokes per round with his chips and pitches.
The difference between Na and second place in that metric (Matt Jones, more on him in a moment) is the same gap between second place and 19th place.
Na has been by far the best short game player in the world during the last two seasons on Tour, setting him up well at Riviera. That has proven true in his starts here. Na has four top 10s at this event since 2010, including a runner-up finish in 2018.
Matt Jones +15000
As mentioned above, Jones has been the second-best short game player in the world over the last year. That skill around the putting surfaces has made up for Jones’ misgivings elsewhere in his game, namely his pedestrian iron play.
Last season, Jones used his short game play to have one of his best on Tour yet. The 41-year-old Australian made 27 of 30 cuts last season with three top 10s and a win at the Honda Classic. He has already turned in some strong finishes this year, most notably a tie for third place at the Sentry Tournament of Champions in Hawaii.
Last season at this venue, Jones finished T8 despite losing strokes on his approach shots. If he can dial in his swing, his putting and chipping could propel a rise up the leaderboard over the weekend.