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3M Open Golf Betting Preview & Picks
After a thrilling Open Championship across the pond at St Andrews, the PGA Tour will head to Minnesota for the 3M Open. Tony Finau, Hideki Matsuyama, and Rickie Fowler are a few of the big names teeing off at TPC Twin Cities.
Even as the PGA Tour tries to fend off the controversial LIV Golf league, this week’s event in Blaine should still result in great golf and tons of excitement. Here’s what you need to know about the tournament, course, key stats, and some players who could win it all.
3M Open History
While the Land of 10,000 Lakes has annually hosted golf tournaments, the 3M Open is still relatively new. The 3M Championship, a PGA Tour Champions event, took place every August from 1993 through 2018. In 2019, it was replaced by the 3M Open and transformed into a regular PGA Tour event in July.
Matthew Wolff won the first 3M Open in 2019 with a score of -21, holding off future major winners Bryson DeChambeau and Collin Morikawa by a single stroke. Michael Thompson won with a -19 scorecard in 2020, eight years after his runner-up finish at the U.S. Open. And last year, Cameron Champ shot 15-under to win his third PGA Tour event.
TPC Twin Cities
Located about 15 miles north of Minneapolis and St. Paul, TPC Twin Cities is a more traditional course than the one we saw at the Old Course last week. But that doesn’t make it an easy course by any means.
This private course, which opened in 2000, was designed by the great Arnold Palmer with Tom Lehman, another major winner) serving as the design consultant. A Par 71 that stretches out over 7,400 yards, TPC Twin Cities offers rolling fairway terrain, bentgrass greens, 72 white sand bunkers, and 27 water hazards that are spread out across 15 holes.
Still, given the winning scores we’ve seen the last three years, the field should find some success this week.
Tournaments like the 3M Open are different than something like the U.S. Open. In golf’s third major, players just try to avoid danger and finish with scores above par. But on a course like TPC Twin Cities, the field will have to rack up as many birdies as it can.
Therefore, looking at a stat like birdie or better can be crucial be finding a winning golfer. Considering ten of the 18 holes are Par 4s, researching Par 4 birdie or better will be the priority. But don’t discount those players who are guaranteed to crush Par 5s, with four of them sprinkled throughout the course as well.
Two other stats worth monitoring are strokes gained: off-the-tee and strokes gained: approach. The first one is important given the number of water hazards surrounding the fairways. Meanwhile, sticking approach shots and avoiding greenside bunkers will be vital to ensuring low-scoring rounds.
Davis Riley +2200
Entering this week, Riley is fifth on the PGA Tour in Par 4 birdie or better percentage at 21.49%. The only players with a better percentage are the PGA Championship winner Justin Thomas, Open Championship winner and runner-up Cameron Smith and Cameron Young, and two-time major winner Dustin Johnson.
In addition to taking advantage of Par 4s, Riley was unconscious for a good chunk of the season. The 25-year-old never finished lower than T13 in six straight tournaments from 4/24 to 6/5 and finished in the top five for three of them. As a result, he’s a solid 23rd in FedEx Cup standings.
Riley hasn’t teed off since last month’s Travelers Championship. But if he’s rested instead of rusted, he stands a chance at winning his first PGA Tour event.
Sahith Theegala +2200
Theegala has been dialed in for 2+ months, making eight straight cuts and finishing inside the top five twice. Yet the 24-year-old rookie is still in search of his first professional win.
We know Theegala can go low thanks to his 17-under at last month’s Travelers Championship. The Southern California native is inside the top 60 for Par 4 birdie or better but inside the top 20 for Par 5 birdie or better and scoring average for Rounds 2 and 3. And while he’s just 73rd in SG: approach, he made history last week with 34 greens in regulation in his first 36 holes.
Theegala’s biggest weakness is his Sunday play, ranking 200th out of 205 golfers in Round 4 scoring average. Hopefully, his recent form can help him correct that trend.
Adam Hadwin +2500
Hadwin has had an up-and-down season, evident by missing the cut at the John Deere Classic just two weeks after a T7 finish at the U.S. Open. But if there’s one place he can get back on track, it’s TPC Twin Cities.
The 34-year-old Canadian has flourished in both of his 3M Open appearances. In 2019, Hadwin shot 18-under and finished in fourth place despite missing the cut in his last tournament. Two years later, he finished T6 at 11-under after missing three straight cuts leading up to the event.
Hadwin isn’t long, but he’s accurate off the tee. He also has a good approach game and is great at getting out of sand if needed. This could be the week he snaps his five-year winless streak.
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