It will be the third week of golf in a row for PGA Championship winner Brooks Koepka and other members of LIV Golf who teed off at Oak Hill last week following LIV’s event in Tulsa, Oklahoma, the week before.
This week, it’s LIV Golf DC as the circuit visits the Washington, DC area for the first time. This event marks the halfway point of the 2023 season. Talor Gooch comes in as the only two-time winner of LIV events this year and leads the standings over Koepka, who is in second place. After a slow start, Cameron Smith has scored three-straight top 10s to move into third in the standings. Dustin Johnson, who won at Tulsa, is up to sixth as he tries to defend his 2022 season championship.
Trump National Golf Club Washington, DC, is located in Potomac Falls, Virginia, and seasonable weather is expected. The course measures over 7,700 yards, so it’s a long test for golfers who also must be accurate. Otherwise, they will deal with plenty of water hazards, steep bunkers, and thick, bentgrass rough. The course hosted the Senior PGA Championship in 2017.
Is having himself quite the 2023. Winning LIV Golf Orlando followed by a runner-up at the Masters in April, he was sixth in Tulsa two weeks ago before winning golf’s second major last week. Will we see a dip coming off the major win? It’s possible, but this event pays more to win than the PGA did, so it’s an important money event, and if Koepka wins the season championship, that would be another huge payday.
Lost in a playoff to Dustin Johnson in Tulsa but earned a top-10 finish at the PGA last week thanks to a final-round 65. Counting the PGA, he’s on a run of four-straight top 10s. In the final round at Tulsa, Cameron Smith tied the LIV 18-hole record with a 61 to force the playoff with Johnson and Branden Grace. The Australian’s propensity to finish tournaments strong will no doubt lead to him hoisting another trophy soon.
Tulsa winner started strong at the PGA with a 67 on day one to sit among the leaders. He fell off after that, however, with three-straight 74s to finish 55th. His combination of length and accuracy off the tee will serve him well on this course.
Quietly posted a solid result at Oak Hill, finishing tied for 18th. Since that’s the worst finish in his last seven events, that means Reed must be performing quite well. He also has three top-five finishes in that stretch, including in two LIV events and a fourth at the Masters in April.
Is proving to be a popular pick, as his odds opened at +2000 and dropped considerably since. When you see length on a course and DeChambeau is coming in playing well, that will naturally favor the big hitter. He has had a rough go of things until this most recent two-week stretch. A seventh at Tulsa was his first LIV top 10 of the year, and he followed that up with a tie for fourth at the PGA last week after being the 18-hole leader at -4 after day one. Granted, this is DeChambeau’s third week in a row playing in a tournament, but he came into this season in better shape physically, so we don’t expect a drop off here.
The LIV points leader, had his trip to Rochester, New York, shortened by missing the cut at the PGA last week, and he was 36th the week before at Tulsa. It shows you how fickle the game of golf can be, considering that Gooch won the previous two LIV tournaments prior to Tulsa. We’ll see if missing the cut last week will allow him to reset his focus and form.
Wound up 29th at the PGA Championship but could’ve posted a top-10 if it wasn’t for a 4-over round on Saturday. After starting the season with a 28th at Mayakoba, each of Varner’s finishes has been better than the previous one on the LIV circuit. He was fourth two weeks ago at Tulsa, so if he continues to improve, there aren’t many spots left before he claims a victory.
Says he’s knocked off all the rust after missing most of 2022 due to knee surgery. His recent results would suggest that. After a rough start to the season (40th in two of the first three tournaments), Watson has been in the top 12 in two of his last three, including a season-best 10th in Tulsa. He wasn’t eligible to play in the PGA, so he comes in more rested than most of the favorites here.
While not as big of a longshot, Jason Kokrak (+2500) hasn’t finished worse than 12th in his last four events. He’s a former multi-time PGA Tour winner who has yet to break through on the LIV circuit, but he could be due for a jump this week.
The big names have been coming through as of late on LIV, with Koepka, Gooch, and Johnson winning the last four events. It feels like Smith is poised for a breakthrough as well. Among those four, we’ll back Johnson and Smith. We also like DeChambeau since he appears to be in form, and Varner and Kokrak are our value plays.
|ODDS TO WIN 2023 LIV GOLF DC
|Charles Howell III
|Harold Varner III