As the Masters comes into view, we’re getting our last look at who the oddsmakers like to win a green jacket … and who the oddsmakers believe bettors will like, too. Tiger Woods, back in the field for the first time since 2015, jumped from 100-1 odds just a few months ago right to the top of the list in recent weeks … an indicator not just of Woods’s resurgence, but of bettors’ willingness to throw money Tiger’s way.
Now that we’ve had a bit of time to watch Woods in action, as well as his competition, though, the stakes have shifted just a bit. Woods has fallen behind two recent champions, Rory McIlroy and Bubba Watson, as well as the No. 1 and No. 2 players in the world in Dustin Johnson and Justin Thomas.
Yet Woods, who hasn’t won at Augusta since 2005 and hasn’t won anything anywhere since 2013, still somehow comes in ahead of Jordan Spieth, Rickie Fowler, and Justin Rose, among many, many others. That’s less a testament to Woods’s playing ability than Vegas’s need to hedge itself against astronomical odds on a popular betting figure, but even so: Woods wouldn’t be drawing enough action to move the lines this much if he weren’t playing some respectable golf.
• Rory McIlroy: 19-2
• Bubba Watson: 10-1
• Dustin Johnson: 11-1
• Justin Thomas: 11-1
• Tiger Woods: 12-1
• Jordan Spieth: 13-1
• Phil Mickelson: 15-1
• Rickie Fowler: 35-2
• Justin Rose: 25-1
• Alex Noren: 25-1
• Paul Casey: 27-1
• Hideki Matsuyama: 27-1
• Jason Day: 30-1
• Jon Rahm: 30-1
• Sergio Garcia: 31-1
• Tommy Fleetwood: 38-1
• Henrik Stenson: 38-1
Regardless of how Woods finishes out this week, it’s clear he’s still got drawing power. And since we’re not likely to see anything like him ever again, you can see why fans are lining up to throw a few bucks behind his name. If he comes up big, it’ll be one of the finest stories in sports … and one of the most profitable, too.
Jay Busbee is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org or find him on Twitter or on Facebook.
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