When you sign-up through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more >
Tiger Woods makes his first start of 2024
This is the third Signature Series event of the season
The field size is just 70 but there will be a cut (low 50 and ties)
Odds from BetMGM Sportsbook. Follow our link and sign up today to take advantage of $150 welcome bonus when using our code WSNMGM.
Once, in an easier-to-fathom time in golf, Tiger Woods would turn up to an event and most likely win.
Well, he’s back in action for his 2024 debut this week and, as ever, Tiger’s presence looms large.
Not that Woods needs a helping hand to hog the headlines but, as well as teeing it up for the first time since last April’s Masters, the 14-time Major winner is also tournament host.
Just who Tiger will be handing the trophy to on Sunday is difficult to call on current evidence.
This new season has seen a string of shock winners and it was added to last week when Nick Taylor beat Charley Hoffman in extra holes at the Waste Management Phoenix Open.
No-one could have predicted those two fighting it out in a play-off but that’s the way things are going.
Ironically, this week’s venue, the iconic Riviera Country Club in Los Angeles, is one of the very few courses that Woods never conquered.
He’s +12500 for those who believe he can somehow pull it off this year but the front of the market is headed, as usual, by World No.1 Scottie Scheffler.
Rory McIlroy is considered his biggest challenger while the last two winners of this event, Jon Rahm and Joaquin Niemann, won’t be present having moved to LIV.
This closing event of the West Coast Swing has been given Signature status, meaning the select 70-man field is battling for a hefty purse of £20m. The field is cut to 50 and ties after 36 holes.
|Champion, nationality and winning score
|Jon Rahm (Spain) -17
|Joaquin Niemann (Chile) -19
|Max Homa (United States) -12
|Adam Scott (Australia) -11
|J.B. Holmes (United States) -14
Opened in 1926, Riviera Country Club is a par 71 and measures 7,322 yards
It features large poa annua putting surfaces
The course, unusually for the United States, features kikuyu fairways and rough
The 18-hole record of 61 was set in the previous century
Lanny Wadkins holds the 72-hole record of 264
Scheffler made a big run in Phoenix last week but his hopes of landing a third straight win at TPC Scottsdale came up short. Still, his third-place finish represented a third top six in four starts this season. At Riviera, he’s been consistent without quite hitting the heights, his form from 2020 to 2023 reading 30-20-7-12.
After starting the season with a win and a second in two Dubai-based events on the DP World Tour, McIlroy fluffed his lines at Pebble Beach, limping home in 66th. He has a good body of work at Riviera, with fourth in 2019, fifth in 2020, 10th in 2022 and top 20s in his first two appearances in 2016 and 2018.
The Norwegian immediately took to Riviera by posting a top-five finish on his course debut in 2021. He went one better when fourth the following year, shooting middle rounds of 64-65, and added 20th in 2023. But having ended last year as golf’s form horse, he’s stuttered so far in 2024 with 22nd in a limited field at The Sentry and 58th at Pebble.
Surely one of the established big guns must win soon and restore order on the PGA TOUR.
That’s been the line used for the last few weeks though and still we wait, the lesser lights perhaps emboldened by watching Davids repeatedly beating Goliaths.
But while it’s tempting to go hunting near the bottom of the betting for the outright winner, I shall give another chance to Justin Thomas.
JT carried our money in Phoenix but couldn’t quite get in a blow, finishing 12th.
That added to a run of four straight top sixes either side of the Christmas break so clearly he’s close to something big again.
The double Major winner was runner-up at Riviera in 2019 and also has sixth, ninth, and 20th in three other visits since 2018.
With doubts hanging over some of his top-name rivals, the door looks open. Bet on Justin Thomas for the win at +1800 with bet365
We landed last week’s 72-hole match bet as Sam Burns got the better of Sungjae Im by 17 shots no less.
This week I’m going to take a chance on local man Patrick Cantlay outscoring Viktor Hovland.
Clearly Hovland has shown he can shine at this venue but splitting with Joe Mayo - a man described as his “transformative swing coach” - appears to have hurt him, in the short-term at least.
And while those doubts persist, he’s worth taking on.
Cantlay hasn’t exactly been pulling up trees either but 11th at Pebble Beach last time was promising and he has lots of history with Riviera all the way back from his college days.
As for this event, Cantlay has five top 20s in his last six appearances, that run bookended with fourth in 2018 and third last year.
Take the American to beat the Norwegian at +105 with DraftKings Sportsbook.
Adam Scott looks like the best bet to land the top 10 money this week.
The Aussie has seven top 10s at Riviera, one of his favorite courses, and two of those are victories. The latest was a fourth in 2022.
He can add impressive current form too via an excellent run of four top 10s and a top 20 in his last five worldwide starts.
Scott was bullish about his ball-striking when eighth in Phoenix last week so let’s back him at +260 with DraftKings Sportsbook for another top 10 here.
Tournament: The Genesis Invitational
Location: Pacific Palisades, CA
Date: Thursday, February 15 - Sunday, February 18
How to Watch: Thursday-Friday 4 p.m.-8 p.m. ET (Golf Channel), Saturday 1 p.m-3 p.m. (Golf Channel), 3 p.m.-7 p.m. (CBS), Sunday 1 p.m-3 p.m. (Golf Channel), 3 p.m.-6.30 p.m. (CBS) And all four days on Sky Sports.
Dave Tindall is former golf editor at SkySports.com and Golf365.com and has been writing betting previews for the PGA Tour and European Tour since 1997. He has also written for a range of betting companies, including William Hill and Betfair, as well as being a regular columnist for Rotoworld, The Guardian, Sporting Life and Planet Sport. His other area of speciality is football while he's also covered cricket and tennis.
Email: [email protected]More info on Dave Tindall
© Rebel Penguin ApS 2024 (a subsidiary of Gaming Innovation Group Inc.)
We support responsible gambling. 21+ Only. Gambling problem? Call 1-800-Gambler.
WSN.com is run by iGaming Cloud Inc (a Gaming Innovation Group Subsidiary) and is registered with the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE) under affiliate vendor ID 89744, with the Indiana Gaming Commission (IGC) under certificate of registration number SWR-000148, approved by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board as a gaming service provider, under certificate registration number 117656-1, possesses a Vendor Minor sports betting license from the Colorado Limited Gaming Control Commission (account number 94414163), granted a vendor registration number VR007603-20-001 by the Michigan Gaming Control Board, an interim Sports Wagering Supplier license, under license number SWS 066, issued by the West Virginia Lottery Commission, a sports betting vendor registration, under registration number #100400, issued by the Director of Gaming Licensing and Investigations of the Virginia Lottery to operate in the State of Virginia, and a Vendor Registration issued by the Sports Wagering Committee of the Tennessee Education Lottery Corporation.
Advertising disclosure: WSN contains links to online retailers on its website. When people click on our affiliate links and make purchases, WSN earns a commission from our partners, including ESPN and various sportsbooks.