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2023 The Sentry: Preview, Prop Picks, Best Bets

The PGA Tour season kicks off in Hawaii for the first time in 10 years, and it’s doing so with the first of eight “signature events” slated for the new 2024 calendar season. Previously reserved strictly for winners from the previous season, the field now is open to all players who finished within the top 50 in the previous season’s FedEx Cup standings. There’s a $20 million purse at stake, which has drawn every winner from last season other than Rory McIlroy and LIV Golf defector Jon Rahm to Oahu.


The event starts Thursday at the Plantation Course at Kapalua. Scoring is always low at this event, and our golf experts provide their favorite prop picks along with best bets to kick off 2024 with a victory.

THE SENTRY

Location: Kapalua, Maui, Hawaii, Jan. 4-7

Course: Plantation Course at Kapalua (Par 73, 7,596 yards)

Purse: $20M (Winner: $3.6M)

Defending Champion: Jon Rahm

FedEx Cup Champion: Viktor Hovland


HOW TO FOLLOWTV: Thursday-Friday, 4-10 p.m. ET (Golf Channel); Saturday-Sunday, 4-6 p.m. (NBC), 6-8 p.m. (GC)Streaming: Thursday-Friday, 12:45-10 p.m. ET; Saturday-Sunday, 1-8 p.m. (ESPN+)X: @TheSentry


PROP PICKS–


Keegan Bradley Top 20 (+150 at DraftKings): Bradley tied for 11th at the Tour Championship and then posted a T19 and T13 in his only two fall events. He finished 34th at Kapalua last year, but he’s one of the more experienced players in the field and has shown the ability to go low in recent events — which is critical at arguably the tour’s easiest course to score on.


–Collin Morikawa 67 or Lower 1st Round (+110 at BetMGM): Morikawa shot 64-66-65 to build a six-shot lead after 54 holes last year before melting down on Sunday. The California native and Las Vegas resident enjoys playing in Hawaii and is coming off a win at the Zozo in his most recent official start. Morikawa followed that up with a solo seventh at the Hero World Challenge.


–Jason Day to Beat Wyndham Clark (-130 at DraftKings): Clark is the reigning U.S. Open champ but hasn’t done much since finishing third at the Tour Championship. He struggled mightily in his first Ryder Cup and posted a T56 on the DP World Tour and a T37 in Japan before finishing 19th in a 20-man field at the Hero. Day hasn’t played at Kapalua in a few years but he is very familiar with the event, including a T3 in 2015.


BEST BETS–


Scottie Scheffler (+550) is coming off a win Dec. 3 at the Hero World Challenge exhibition tournament in the Bahamas as he makes his first official tour start since a T6 at the Tour Championship on Aug. 27. He is the book’s biggest liability this week as he leads the field in total bets (11.3 percent) and money (16.7 percent) backing him to win since opening at +600.


–Viktor Hovland (+900) won the final two playoff events and is seeking to become the first player to win three consecutive official events since Dustin Johnson in the 2016-17 season. Hovland does not have a top-10 finish in three previous appearances, likely contributing to his odds lengthening since opening at +800.


–Collin Morikawa (+1200) held a six-shot lead entering the final round last year before finishing solo second. He has been popular with the public this week, drawing 8.5 percent of the total bets at BetMGM. Morikawa leads the way at DraftKings, where he has been backed by the most total bets (9 percent) and money (14 percent).


–Xander Schauffele (+1400) won the event in 2019 and owns the longest current active streak as he makes his seventh consecutive start. He is second at the book, having been backed by 8.8 percent of the money.


–Jordan Spieth (+2200) won the event in 2016 and is BetMGM’s second biggest liability this week, having drawn 6.1 percent of the total bets since opening at +2500.


–Tom Kim (+2500), 21, is the youngest player in the field for the second consecutive year. He finished T5 in his debut last season.


NOTES–


Rahm will not defend his title after signing with LIV Golf last month. The only other event winner from last year not in the field is McIlroy. The other 35 winners will be joined by 24 players who did not win an event but finished inside the top 50. Eighteen players will be making their tournament debuts.


–The Plantation Course was the easiest course on tour relative to par last season for the third consecutive time with an average of 4.078 strokes under par. Five of the six scores of 30-under or better on tour since 1950 have come at The Sentry, highlighted by Cam Smith’s 34 under in 2022.


–Tommy Fleetwood is ranked No. 14 in the world, the highest in the field without a win on the PGA Tour. He has 29 top-10s since joining the tour for the 2017-18 season.

–Field Level Media

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