Columnist image

TSN Senior Reporter

| Archive

After a wild and wonderful RBC Canadian Open and a thrilling U.S. Open, the Travelers Championship has some work on its hands to follow with an exciting golf tournament. Luckily, it’s a much-loved event on the schedule of many players.

There are 40 of the top 100 players in the world in the field including the top four – Scottie Scheffler, Sam Burns, Rory McIlroy and Justin Thomas. They’ll take on TPC River Highlands, a relatively easy course compared to the previous two weeks. It won’t be a pushover, but players can ease up on the mental grind here. Long hitters will certainly have an advantage if the list of past winners is any indication.

To Win

Rory McIilroy +1100

McIlroy comes in as the co-favourite, along with Scheffler and Thomas, and with good reason. He won in Canada, came tied for fifth at the U.S. Open and hasn’t been out of the top 20 since the Masters. He holds top spot in Strokes Gained: Total, an indication every part of his game is working well. He’s played here three times previously finishing T17, T12 and T11.

Sam Burns +1900

Another easy pick here with Burns, who is 24th in Driving Distance and can easily navigate the fairways in Hartford. Couple that with a Greens in Regulation mark that has him fifth on tour and it’s easy to understand why he’s won three times this year. This is his third straight week out on tour but if you’re worried about burnout, don’t as his last two wins came in his third consecutive start.

Top 10 Finish

Keegan Bradley +230

Somewhat quietly having a strong season and currently sits 30th in the FedEx Cup standings. Bradley has finished inside the top 10 in four of his last six starts. That includes a tie for seventh at the U.S. Open. He’s 37th in Driving Distance, which is enough for this course, and he’s 10th in three-putt avoidance, a good indicator that we don’t have to worry about his putting.

Brian Harman +430

Harman has four top-10 finishes in his last seven starts at the Travelers and has three top 10s so far this season. While he’s not a bomber, he does make up for it with accuracy off the tee, sitting 12th in that category. He’s also 16th in total putting. And we’ll admit it: we like to cheer for the lefties.

Top 30 finish

Mackenzie Hughes +190

Comes in after a tie for 24th at the U.S. Open and having made his last three cuts with ease. Of note was a solid performance off the tee at The Country Club. Coupled with his magical short game and putting, it shows just how solid his game is at the moment and makes his a pretty easy selection.

Harris English +240

The defending champion at this tournament, English returned to play at The Memorial after hip surgery, that sidelined him for four months. Yes, he’s only made two starts since January but that doesn’t bother me. He made the cut at last week’s U.S. Open, although weekend scores of 78-77 dropped him down the leaderboard. But with every week back, he should regain the form that saw him play on the U.S. Ryder Cup team last year.