Formbook students are entitled to look quizzically at the favourite for the 3M Open this week – Dustin Johnson tops the betting despite performing like the club hacker at Muirfield Village last week.
Johnson entered the Memorial Tournament as one of the most well-fancied runners, having won the Travelers Championship in his previous start, but he carded back-to-back rounds of 80 to finish 16 over par. That left an embarrassed DJ 13 shots short of the cut-line in the Jack Nicklaus-hosted event.
Johnson is making his 3M Open debut, having skipped the inaugural edition 12 months ago, and he is the
10/1 market leader. With the US PGA on the horizon, the former world number one will be keen to show his Travelers triumph was no fluke. A hot putter was the main reason he won that event and Johnson’s ball-striking remains short of his usual standard.
Tony Finau is competing in the 3M Open, still stuck on just one PGA Tour victory after fading badly from the top of the Memorial leaderboard last weekend, while Brooks Koepka is desperate to find some form as a niggling knee problem continues to trouble him.
Defending Champion Capable of Retaining his Title
22/1 about Matthew Wolff does not compare to the enormous odds which were against his name for last year’s 3M Open, but the shorter price is well worth serious consideration.
The defending champion did not just win last year – he provided one of the most spectacular breakthrough moments in the history of the sport – and Wolff must feel 10-feet tall whenever he steps on to TPC Twin Cities.
It seemed like Bryson DeChambeau was going to take the 3M Open trophy home – and he was looking cockier than ever after posting the clubhouse lead – but Wolff had other ideas. A final-hole eagle, with a putt holed from off the green, meant the youngster won the tournament by a shot. He sent the fans wild and a star was born.
There will be no galleries for Wolff to entertain this time, but the result could be the same. The 21-year-old was runner-up in the Rocket Mortgage Classic at the start of this month and 22nd in the Memorial last week. More 3M Open joy is entirely feasible.
Power-packed Maidens Could be Ready to Contend
If Johnson, Wolff and the other established names flop, then Sam Burns and Kristoffer Ventura are two PGA Tour maidens who could take advantage.
40/1, and Ventura,
70/1, have both won on the Korn Ferry Tour and the young guns are ideally suited to the TPC Twin Cities. It is a generous layout which favours attacking players who putt well – a category in which Burns and Ventura emphatically fit.
Burns finished seventh in the 3M Open last year, while Ventura, an Oklahoma State team-mate of Wolff, should take an immediate shine to TPC Twin Cities on his debut.
*All odds correct at time of writing.