US Open Picks & Predictions | Dimitrov vs Murray, Jarry vs Michelsen
Clive Brunskill/Getty. Pictured: Grigor Dimitrov.
What a fun day of tennis on tap from the US Open on Thursday.
That includes a matchup between one of the game's legends and one of its more mercurial talents for a spot in the third round.
Then, we have a pair of players who have really burst onto the scene in 2023, again with a spot in the third round on the line.
Let's take a look at those matches and see what the best betting angle is for each in my US Open picks and predictions.
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US Open Picks & Predictions
Grigor Dimitrov (-125) vs Andy Murray (+102)
12 p.m. ET
The line in the Grigor Dimitrov and Andy Murray match seems to be this close only because of the lengthy match Dimitrov played last round against Alex Molcan.
That should certainly be a factor in pricing this up, but let's not forget that Murray needed nearly three hours himself on court, despite winning in straight sets and playing a much less fit lefty grinder in Corentin Moutet.
Further, I actually trust the Bulgarian on one day rest off a 4.5-hour match more than I trust Murray on the same rest off a 3-hour match.
Then there's the difference in their games in the year 2023. It's well-documented that Murray is no longer the player he once was. He's been a bit more impressive in 2023, but the overarching point still stands.
Dimitrov, in the meantime, continues to be a frustratingly talented player who has struggled at the top levels of the game. His 2023 campaign, though? Quietly impressive. He hasn't won a title, but he has a final in Geneva, a semifinal in Rotterdam and reached the second week of the last two Grand Slams. The majority of losses have also come to some of the best in the game. Daniil Medvedev, Carlos Alcaraz, Novak Djokovic, Jannik Sinner and Alexander Zverev have accounted for over half of his losses this year.
We aren't dealing with that level of opponent here.
I have Demitrov with the better serve and forehand, along with the superior stamina and form of the 32-year-old. I see him emerging victorious in this one just over 60% of the time, which gives me a nice edge on the -125 available at PointsBet.
Pick: Dimitrov ML (-125 via PointsBet)
Nicolas Jarry (-175) vs Alex Michelsen (+135)
2 p.m. ET
What a moment for Alex Michelsen, the teenager from California who has taken the summer hard-court swing by storm. He managed to reach the final in Newport before winning a pair of matches in Winston-Salem.
He reached this point with a strong straight-sets performance against Albert Ramos Vinolas as well — not an easy task on any surface given how many balls the Spaniard can make you play.
Now he's in for a big test in the booming serve and forehand of Nicolas Jarry, who himself has had a career year in 2023.
There is no doubt that Michelsen will be overpowered in this one, but he makes up for it by having far more court craft, being the superior mover and manipulating the ball around the court really well. He's also a very smart player, with strong point construction abilities, which can be rare for teenagers at this level.
On the flip side of the court it's the polar opposite. Jarry has stepped it up in a big way this year, but is still incredibly reliant on the serve and forehand. He may find a bit more pressure on return during his purple patches of service, but I'm not sold on him moving through against a surging youngster.
Michelsen has also shown the ability to handle pace in previous matches this summer. He beat Maxime Cressy (also lost to him trying to back up the final's run in Newport the next week) and Sebastian Ofner in the run-up to the US Open. This is, admittedly, a step up from those two, but I still think Michelsen is more likely than the odds would indicate to pull off the win.
Pick: Michelsen ML (+135 via Caesars)