Wednesday, January 19, 2022

2022 Sentry Tournament of Champions odds, picks, field: PGA insider says back Jon Rahm, fade Patrick Cantlay

The first PGA Tour event of the calendar year tees off Thursday with a champions-only field of 39 golfers at the 2022 Sentry Tournament of Champions in Maui, Hawaii. Last year’s event on the Plantation Course at Kapalua had an expanded field after the pandemic wiped out several tournaments. All of the golfers in this year’s field were winners in the past 12 months. That includes Xander Schauffele, who hasn’t won a PGA Tour event since taking the title at Kapalua two years ago but won gold at the Tokyo Olympics last summer. Harris English, who got in last year based on his FedEx Cup ranking, is back to defend his 2021 title. He went 25-under and won a one-hole playoff with Joaquin Niemann for his first victory since 2013.  

Caesars Sportsbook lists Jon Rahm and Justin Thomas as the 17-2 co-favorites in its latest 2022 Sentry Tournament of Champions odds. Collin Morikawa (10-1), Bryson DeChambeau (12-1), Viktor Hovland (14-1) and Xander Schaufflele (14-1) also are expected to be among the top contenders from the Sentry Tournament of Champions field. Before you make any 2022 Sentry Tournament of Champions picks or PGA Tour predictions, you need to see what proven golf insider Sal Johnson has to say.

The esteemed golf insider has been around the game for many years and knows what it takes to win. Johnson has a strong track record at Kapalua, ranking the winner among his contenders three of the past four years. That includes English, who was a surprise champion last year after getting in when the pandemic changed the rules for setting the field.  

“He has played great in the last year,” Johnson said before the event, noting that he tied for 11th in his only appearance in 2014. The veteran completed his comeback after ending the 2019-20 season ranked 269th in the world, winning his first event in more than seven years.     

Johnson also had a strong run during the fall season. Before the Mayakoba event in Mexico, the expert had Viktor Hovland among his players to watch, while he predicted Brooks Koepka would miss the cut.

Koepka didn’t break par and went home early again, while Hovland shot 23-under to cruise to a four-stroke victory.

Before the Zozo Championship in Japan, Johnson tabbed Hideki Matsuyama in his best bets, and he was right on the money. Matsuyama shot a final-round 65 and won by five strokes after trailing by one with eight holes to play on Sunday.

At the Sanderson Farms Championship, Johnson nailed Sam Burns as his winner. Anyone who has followed Johnson’s advice has cashed in huge.  

Now Johnson, the first producer of “Inside the PGA Tour” and longtime ABC Sports golf producer who worked with Jack Nicklaus and Arnold Palmer, has released his highly confident 2022 Sentry Tournament of Champions picks. The picks from the founder of GOLFstats.com, the world’s top golf stats database, will definitely surprise you. You can only see Johnson’s Sentry Tournament of Champions picks, best bets, and full leaderboard at SportsLine.

Top 2022 Sentry Tournament of Champions expert picks

In a huge surprise, the golf expert is strongly fading FedEx Cup champion Patrick Cantlay, the fourth-ranked player in the world. The 29-year-old won his final two tournaments last season in locking up the season-long title, shooting 48-under over the two events. He also contributed 3.5 points to Team USA’s Ryder Cup victory, but he hasn’t played competitively since and will be rusty. Johnson sees this as a no-brainer, especially since Cantlay rarely plays well on Bermuda grass and struggles in windy conditions. There are plenty of other options in this loaded field.

Johnson is looking forward to seeing how Rahm picks up after his stellar season in 2020-21. The Spaniard moved up to No. 1 in the world in June and finished in the top-10 in 15 of his 22 events last season. He has finished in the top-10 in five straight majors and won his first at the U.S. Open in September at Torrey Pines. The 27-year-old was first on tour in strokes gained tee-to-green last season and also led in scoring average (69.3). He was second in greens in regulation (71.93 percent) and 15th in three-putt avoidance, a critical stat for Kapalua.          

Johnson also wants to see the follow-up from Morikawa, who got his second major victory in the British Open at Royal St. George’s. The 24-year-old already has six victories on Tour and is looking over Rahm’s shoulder as the world’s No. 2 player. He has played two Tour events already this season, finishing second at the CJ Cup and T-7 at the Zozo Championship. He also tied for fifth at the unofficial Hero World Challenge. Morikawa is 43-under over those three events, and he is 10th in strokes gained putting, which has been a weakness to this point.   

How to make 2022 Sentry Tournament of Champions golf picks

Johnson is backing a long shot in Maui who comes in at more than 20-1. This player finished the fall portion of the season on a strong run, and he can make the putts that are necessary to contend at Kapalua. He could pull off an unexpected victory in this star-studded field, and you’ll want to be behind him in line to cash in. You can only get Johnson’s PGA picks and expert analysis at SportsLine.

Who wins the 2022 Sentry Tournament of Champions? Where do Jon Rahm and Collin Morikawa finish? And which long shot is a must-back? Check out the odds below, then visit SportsLine to see Sal Johnson’s full leaderboard, picks and analysis for the 2022 Sentry Tournament of Champions, all from the insider who knows what it takes to win on the PGA Tour, and find out.

2022 Sentry Tournament of Champions odds, field, top contenders

Jon Rahm 17-2

Justin Thomas 17-2

Collin Morikawa 10-1

Viktor Hovland 12-1

Bryson DeChambeau 12-1

Xander Schauffele 14-1

Patrick Cantlay 16-1

Sam Burns 16-1

Daniel Berger 22-1

Brooks Koepka 22-1

Jordan Spieth 22-1

Sungjae Im 22-1

Cameron Smith 22-1

Hideki Matsuyama 22-1

Abraham Ancer 25-1

Tony Finau 25-1

Patrick Reed 25-1

Harris English 33-1

Jason Kokrak 35-1

Marc Leishman 35-1

Talor Gooch 35-1

Billy Horschel 55-1

Kevin Na 60-1

Si-Woo Kim 66-1

Seamus Power 66-1

Max Homa 66-1

Cameron Champ 66-1

Lucas Herbert 80-1

Erik Van Rooyen 80-1

Kevin Kisner 100-1

Joel Dahmen 100-1

Garrick Higgo 100-1

Cameron Davis 100-1

Branden Grace 100-1

Kyoung-Hoon Lee 125-1

Matt Jones 125-1

Phil Mickelson 125-1

Lucas Glover 150-1

Stewart Cink 150-1

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