Oddsmakers Say Bettors Going Against Tiger Woods At Masters
April 8th, 2010- By Bryan Cross
Vegas oddsmakers have made it commonplace, and trivial to install Tiger Woods as the betting favorite to win the Masters year in and year out. The theme continued this year, however, Woods’ odds are not overwhelming due to the recent off-course events that took place in his personal life.
Actually,Chuck Esposito, who is the casino operations manager for the Tropicana Hotel in Las Vegas, says that bettors are placing wagers against the top-ranked golfer.
“Woods is the favorite at 9 to 2 to win, but for him that’s super-low,” Esposito remarked. “We’re seeing tremendous action on other guys. For example Anthony Kim opened at 15 to 1 and now he’s at 10 to 1, Ernie Els opened at 20 to 1 and now he’s 8 to 1, and Steve Stricker has gone from 25 to 1 to 8 to 1.”
Upon the initial announcement Woods made detailing his intent to make his return to golf at the Masters, he was established as a 4 to 1 favorite. However, in light of the fact that Woods has not played a competitive round in 144 days before his first tee shot on Thursday, oddsmakers were skeptical and increased his odds throughout the course of the week.
“Usually he’s at 3 to 1 or 4 to 1 to win,” Esposito said. “This year is one of the best prices you’ll ever get on Woods in the Masters. For him, 5 to 1 is a steal.”
Espisito also said that the Tropicana is offering to bettors proposition wagers on Woods as to how many majors he will win in 2010.
No Majors- 5/2
One Major- 2/1
Two Majors- 4/1
Three Majors- 10/1
Grand Slam- 25/1
The crop of courses for which the 2010 majors will be played sets up ideal for Woods, as he has a history of success at three of the four.
After the Masters, the U.S Open will be played at Pebble Beach, site of Woods’ 15-shot victory in 2000. The British Open will be held at St. Andrews, where Woods has won twice, in 2000 and 2005. The PGA Championship will be contested at Whistling Straits in Wisconsin, the only course that Woods has not won on, but did play in the 2004 PGA Championship.
Esposito expects a significant increase in action throughout the course of the week with Woods now in the field, as compared to a tournament without him.
“We’ll have phenomenal crowds, especially when Tiger tees off,” Esposito stated. “The Masters is such a huge event here. If Tiger is in the hunt on Sunday, it will probably be standing-room-only crowds at every sportsbook in Nevada.”
Following Woods in the lines of betting favorites on Online Sportsbooks is Phil Mickelson, who is 12/1.