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The Memorial Picks: PGA TOUR Golf Best Bets, Predictions, Odds to Consider on DraftKings Sportsbook

Geoff Ulrich provides his top golf bets on DraftKings Sportsbook for the Memorial Tournament.

This week, the PGA TOUR heads to its regular Memorial Day week stop in Dublin, Ohio and a Jack Nicklaus-designed course in Muirfield Village that has hosted this event since inception in 1976. Muirfield Village plays as a par 72 and is listed at 7,533 yards but can stretch out past 7,600 yards depending on setup.

Set your DraftKings fantasy golf lineups here: PGA TOUR $1.2M Pitch + Putt [$300K to 1st]

The Memorial is a classic par-72 setup and requires players to navigate tricky par 3s and long par 4s while attempting to make as many birdies as possible on the shorter par 5s. It can be a struggle for some players, as the complex and quick green structures are tough to hold and lead to some of the lowest green-in-regulation percentages we see all year. The fairways at Muirfield are wide (and we should see higher-than-average driving accuracy this week), but the rough is also usually grown out, and that tends to distinguish it from places like Augusta National, which the venue was designed after.

The bentgrass greens play quick and were replaced after the 2020 season. The course did play firm and tough last year (for anyone not named Jon Rahm) as the two playoff participants, Patrick Cantlay (2019 and 2021 winner) and Collin Morikawa (winner of 2020 Workday played at Muirfield), only reached 13-under par for the week. There is a small amount of precipitation and little-to-no wind in the forecast, so we may see scoring ease up just a touch, although a lot will depend on setup. The recent renovations do allow this venue to stretch to over 7,600 yards.

From an odds perspective, Muirfield has led us to a wide range of winners. Both David Lingmerth (2015) and William McGirt (2016) went off at well over +10000 in the pre-event betting odds, but we have also seen Jon Rahm (2020 - +2000) and Patrick Cantlay (2021 - +2200) prevail at much shorter odds, as well. The real trend is that over the last four years, we have only seen the elites of the game, or future elites, take home the trophy. While there’s certainly some value in the mid-range, picking players outside of the top 50 in the OWGR is not something you should be doing often in the outright department at this event.

For a full course preview, key statistics breakdown and additional players to consider on DraftKings Sportsbook, refer to the DraftKings Preview on DraftKings Playbook. Here are the bets we should be considering this week.

All betting odds provided by DraftKings Sportsbook and all odds subject to change.

Viktor Hovland to Win (+2000)

Hovland hasn’t been as sharp of late (as he was at the start of the year), but he also now has two starts under his belt (the PGA Championship and the Charles Schwab) after taking a decent layoff following the Masters in April. The concern with Hovland is always around the green, but his putter can mask a lot of those issues, and he looked confident with that club again last week at Colonial, gaining over 4.0 strokes on what were fast and tough bentgrass greens.

When we look at where Hovland has had success in 2022, it has come at comparably tough venues on the PGA TOUR, like Bay Hill and Riviera. These are venues that stretch well over 7,400 yards and throw a lot of tough par 4s and par 3s at players — much like Muirfield does. Hovland has done his best work at more scorable target-fests, like the Mayakoba Classic, to this point in his career, but his elite tee-to-green game should allow him to compete and grab more wins at venues like Muirfield Village. At +2000, he’s a good starting point for betting cards this week.

Sungjae Im to Win (+3500) | Top 5 +700

Im is another younger player who is trending well and ready for a kind of breakout win at a more prestigious event like the Memorial. The 24-year-old bounced back from having to skip the PGA Championship (Covid) with a solid T15 finish last week — a finish that saw him gain multiple strokes around the green (an area of his game that has been trending well). Im has now gained over 2.0 strokes around the green in each of his last four starts on the PGA TOUR — a great indicator that perhaps he’s ready to finally show something at Muirfield Village, which is a venue where he’s yet to finish better than T57 in three career appearances.

The course history with Im isn’t ideal, but he’s played well at other longer venues like Bay Hill (T3 in 2019) and Augusta National (T2 in 2020), and his course history at Muirfield is allowing us to get solid top five and outright odds on him this week. Im’s a good add for me at these levels and a player who looks on the verge of a big week soon.

Aaron Wise to Win (+8000) | Top 10 (+600)

We’ll take one longshot this week with a player in Aaron Wise, who possesses enough talent to get himself in contention in a deeper field like the one we’re seeing this week. Wise may not be popping up on the leaderboards as much as some of the other young names (like Cameron Young or Davis Riley), but the talent he possesses is comparable. Wise’s last three events have seen him gain over 2.5 strokes on approach, and he ranks 10th in that category in this field over the last 24 rounds.

Wise’s short game has taken a tick upwards of late, as well, and his track record at Jack Nicklaus-designed venues is quite good, having posted a T9 at Muirfield last year and a T13 at the Honda in 2021 (an event he was leading at points throughout the weekend). Wise’s T23 at the PGA Championship almost seems to be going unnoticed this week, as he’s still available at +8000 in the outright department and at a solid +600 number for a top 10, making him an easy add for me.

Brendan Steele Top 20 (+350)

Patrick Rodgers Top 20 (+550)

I was tempted to go back to a veteran like Luke Donald or Brandt Snedeker for a top 40 play this week (both are +400 to top 40 on the DraftKings Sportsbook) but instead like doubling down in the top 20 region. Both Steele and Rodgers are trending quite well right now (for them) and worth a look in this category.

Steele has made five cuts in a row now and has gained over 2.0 strokes off the tee in each of those five starts. Rodgers is also playing well off the tee of late, gaining over 1.0 stroke in that category in each of his last three starts. Rodgers’ approaches haven’t been on par with Steele, but the upside he brings with his putter could easily save us in a top-20 bet. Rodgers has gained over 1.0 strokes putting in each of his last three starts and has gained over 5.0 strokes putting at Muirfield in two of his last three trips to the venue.

Given the strong recent off the tee stats, both players should be positioning themselves well on the par 5s for some birdies this week, which is a big key in posting a decent finish on Muirfield Village. A decent week with the irons or putter, from either player, should leave us close to hitting on one, or both, of these top-20 bets this Sunday.

Set your DraftKings fantasy golf lineups here: PGA TOUR $1.2M Pitch + Putt [$250K to 1st]

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