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3 PGA Championship Longshot Bets: Ian Poulter Primed to Contend at Bellerive

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Credit: USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Ian Poulter

  • Longshots have been more likely to win the PGA Championship than any of golf's other three major championships. This year's PGA tees off on Aug. 9 at Bellerive Country Club outside of St. Louis, Missouri.
  • Ian Poulter, whose betting odds are north of 100-1, is a great play. He doesn't have any weaknesses in his game and is trending in the right direction.

I have to thank Justin Thomas for padding the bankroll a week before a major by taking down the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational at a completely undervalued 30-1 price. That marks the 11th outright winner picked in my Action Network articles this season. Let’s try to keep it going at this week’s PGA Championship.


If you’re going to look down the board and try to find a longshot winner, the PGA Championship has been one of the better spots.

Players like Y.E. Yang, Shaun Micheel and Keegan Bradley all came from nowhere to earn the title of major champion at massive odds.

I’ve targeted three guys this week that I think have a chance of beating the odds and claiming their first major title.


Ian Poulter

Betting odds: 102-1 to win


Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports.

Poulter has quietly put together a great season on the PGA Tour and has rounded his game into excellent form just in time to become a thorn in the side of the U.S Ryder Cup team.

After winning in Houston to qualify for the Masters, Poulter has finished in the top 25 in six of his past eight PGA Tour starts.


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Poulter doesn’t really have any weaknesses in his game. He’s straight off the tee and long enough to gain strokes, his iron play is solid and the short game has been fairly consistent.

He’s coming off a good week at the WGC-Bridgestone, where he finished 10th. He had a decent opportunity to win entering Sunday, but a poor final round dropped him down the board.

I also like him for a top-10 play in that 7-1 range.


Russell Henley

Betting odds: 150-1


Credit: Michael Madrid-USA TODAY Sports

Henley is another guy, like Poulter, who has just strung together solid results this season. He’s just lacking the win for his efforts.

Prior to The Open, he had finished top-10 in his two prior starts and also owns top 25 finishes in the Masters and U.S. Open.

Henley is another player with a consistent all-around game. He’s a good ball-striker and he putts well. The around-the-green area has been his only real cause for concern this season. But even that is trending in the proper direction. He’s gained ground on the field in four of his past seven events around the green after some really bad performances early in the season.

With Henley’s overall game in form, I also like his top-20 odds at 5-1.


Kevin Na

Betting odds: 200-1


Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

For a while, Na was the classic guy on tour, who would get close, but never win. He finally broke that drought at the Greenbrier this summer.

Now it might be another seven years before he wins, but maybe it spurs him on to bigger things. At 200-1, it’s worth rolling the dice on the latter.

Na has a strong approach game and is good around the greens. With two less par 5s this week, that could level the playing field for someone who lacks firepower off the tee.

If the driver cooperates and he’s able to keep the ball in the fairway to set up his approach game, Na very well could pop up on the leaderboard this week.

Like Henley, I’ll be backing him at 5-1 to finish in the top 20.

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