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PGA TOUR: Phoenix Open odds, tips and predictions with Mike Glasscott

After a 54-hole conclusion to the Pebble Beach Pro-Am, the PGA TOUR rolls into Scottsdale and Mike Glasscott has three players to watch out for this week.

Mike Glasscott's tips

Justin Thomas To Win @ 10/1
Adam Hadwin Top 10 @ 11/5
Mark Hubbard Top 20 @ 10/3

PGA TOUR

The Stadium Course at TPC Scottsdale Guide

Opening its doors in 1987, TPC Scottsdale serves as the host of the WM Phoenix Open. 

Playing to a Par-71 (35-36), The Stadium Course has checked in at 7,261 yards since the 2019 event.

For the fourth consecutive week, navigating Poa annua will be required. The smallest greens on TOUR at Pebble Beach have been replaced with complexes that average twice the size. The absence of a Pro-Am this week will kick the green speeds up to 12 feet or more.

Keeping the ball out of the sandy waste areas, 67 bunkers, plus six holes with water in play is the main order of business. Only two inches of rough frame the fairway before the desert takes over.

Since the renovation after the 2014 edition, winners have thrived off the tee and found plenty of GIR. 

The highest cut over the last three seasons was Even-par last year after 2-under and 3-under in the previous two editions.

Pars will not hurt, but the average winning score over the last nine editions almost hits 17-under-par. The last three years have produced exactly five rounds over par by players cashing T20 or better.

WM Phoenix Open Preview

The party in the desert will go on this week regardless of the weather that followed the PGA TOUR from the Monterey Peninsula to the Sonoran Desert.

Known as “The People’s Open”, a field of 132 players will encounter crowds over 700,000 strong across the tournament week. Friday and Saturday tickets, sold out before the week began, will push more than 200,000 through the door each day before Sunday’s calmer, final round. The Coliseum, better known as the Par-3 16th, plays in front of a crowd approaching 20,000. 

A Signature Event last year, the WM Phoenix Open will be played as a regular PGA TOUR event in 2024. Featuring 28 of the top 50 players in the Official World Golf Rankings, half of the top 10 will tee it up in Scottsdale.

“The Greenest Show on Grass” will include a 36-hole cut. The top 65 and ties will play the final two rounds. 

Wyndham Clark, the 54-hole winner last week at a weather-shortened AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am, shares the post-renovation course record (61) with Jordan Spieth, who are both entered this week.

Defending champion and World No. 1 Scottie Scheffler leads the field of 27 of the top 50 players in the Official World Golf Ranking. The Texan will look to make it three wins on the bounce after taking home the biggest prize in the last two years.

Top of the Board  

Scottie Scheffler (9/2) has a proven formula to deal with the environment, noise, and requirements to lift the trophy at TPC Scottsdale. Posting 51-under in his last three visits, he will look to make it four consecutive paydays inside the top 10 and his third consecutive victory. Patient investors might jump on during the week to get a better number.

Justin Thomas (10/1): Converging trends of form and course history make the two-time major champion appealing again this week. Stepping out of his comfort zone with starts at The American Express (T3) and Pebble Beach (T6), he has continued his upward trend worldwide. Posting top-10 paydays in four of his last five in the Sonoran Desert, I won’t talk you out of him this week.

Max Homa (16/1): Tuning up for his return to Riviera next week, the SoCal native, who has never missed the weekend here from five previous tries, should be dialing in all the elements of his bag. Only three rounds from 20 total in his career have posted 67 or better in the desert.

Jordan Spieth (18/1): Another week of temperatures in the mid-50s, grey skies, and breezes may not improve the spirits of those who struggled last week. Posting the lowest round of the event twice in the last three events here, including matching the course record of 61 in 2021, the Texan will look to wrangle his first podium payday in eight starts. 

Sam Burns (20/1): The Louisiana native has posted 11-under here twice in the last three years. The 2023 version registered T6, while the 2021 outing barely crept into the top 25 (T22). The last time he was in the desert, he held the final round lead with four holes to go at The American Express before fading to T6.

Wyndham Clark (28/1): Before he won a U.S. Open last summer or picked up his first win at Quail Hollow last spring, Clark set the post-renovation scoring record of 61 in 2020. Fresh off 60, the new course record at Pebble Beach, and his third win since last May, Clark will look to better his T10 from 2023.

Byeong Hun An (30/1): Leading after 54 holes on debut in 2017, he will feel that TPC Scottsdale might owe him one. In the first four events he played at The People’s Open, he garnered a pair of top-10 paychecks and never collected anything worse than T23. Making his first start since T53 in 2021, the Korean has been runner-up in two of his last six on TOUR, including a playoff defeat at The Sony Open in Hawaii. 

Players to consider for Top 10, Top 20, or Top 40 action:

Matt Fitzpatrick (33/1): Cool and damp conditions shouldn’t bother the Englishman. Plenty of green to work with from the fairway should help.

Adam Hadwin (60/1): The Canadian, who is now a local, has posted his best recent results on desert tracks. Running second at TPC Las Vegas, he added T6 at TPC Stadium Course at PGA West. Dots connected.

Akshay Bhatia (80/1): The winner at Barracuda last summer has cashed in nine of his last 10 starts. The only trunk slam came after posting 12-under at The American Express. If another long shot decides to break through again this week, I’ll rely on his excellent tee-to-green game.

Keith Mitchell (90/1): Pure smoke from the tee box, I’ll lean on the big hitter to find more GIR this week with the bigger targets in play.  

Mark Hubbard (100/1): Hit it great at Torrey Pines (T20) and followed up with three more solid rounds at Pebble Beach (T4) before the event was canceled.

Nate Lashley (175/1): Plenty of risk with hope for a reward reaching this deep. The Scottsdale resident is all-or-nothing around here. After T3 at Torrey Pines and T10 on the Baja Peninsula last fall, he is my long shot to hit the top 40.

Angles

Since 2000, there have only been three international champions.

Scheffler and Hideki Matsuyama (50/1) are the only multiple winners in the field post-renovation.

Scheffler also became the last champion to win for the first time on the PGA TOUR at this event.

Looking for a rookie this week? J.B. Holmes (2500/1) was the last to lift the trophy in 2004. The Kentuckian would go on to win the 2006 edition as well.

TPC Scottsdale has produced a clean card over four rounds exactly once. Andrew Putnam did not square a bogey or worse in 2021.

The Stadium Course has not played over par for four rounds since 2016.

There are seven past champions in the field this week.

The streak of events using multiple courses ends at three this week. 

Mike Glasscott’s WM Phoenix Open tips

Justin Thomas To Win @ 10/1
Adam Hadwin Top 10 @ 11/5
Mark Hubbard Top 20 @ 10/3

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