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Hola, friends and degenerates! It’s time to head back to the Sunshine State for this week’s Valspar Championship.

In the past, the Valspar has been a sub-par tournament filled with PGA Tour journeymen and young kids who haven’t really proven they could do more than beat their dad and his buddies at the local club. Boy, how times have changed!

This week, those in the Tampa area will be treated a smorgasbord of stars with nearly a dozen major champions in the field. Tiger Woods, Jordan Spieth, Justin Rose, Sergio Garcia, Rory McIlroy and slew of stars and no-names alike will be vying for the weird ugly coveted paintbrush-swoosh trophy-thing!

Better than that? Why, that’s the cold-hard cash you could win — if you choose your bets wisely. There’s plenty of danger in betting on an event like this, as someone deep in the pack could pick the worst moment to have their best one.

Here’s a look at my can’t-miss, no-doubt, mortal locks for the Valspar Championship:

Valspar Championship
Innisbrook Resort (Copperhead) – Palm Harbor, Florida
March 8 – 11, 2018

ODDS to Win:
Jordan Spieth 8/1
Rory McIlroy 14/1
Sergio Garcia 16/1
Justin Rose 18/1
Henrik Stenson 20/1
Paul Casey 20/1
Tiger Woods 25/1
Tony Finau 25/1
Adam Hadwin 30/1
Adam Scott 30/1
Louis Oosthuizen 40/1
Matt Kuchar 40/1
Gary Woodland 40/1
Webb Simpson 40/1
Ryan Moore 40/1
Byeong Hun An 40/1
Chez Reavie 40/1
Kevin Na 40/1
Luke List 40/1
Matthew Fitzpatrick 50/1
Charl Schwartzel 50/1
Branden Grace 50/1
Cameron Smith 50/1
Steve Stricker 50/1
Patrick Reed 50/1
Jason Dufner 50/1
Kevin Streelman 50/1
Brandt Snedeker 60/1
Zach Johnson 60/1
Charley Hoffman 60/1
Bill Haas 60/1
Ross Fisher 60/1
Russell Knox 60/1
Ollie Schniederjans 60/1
Jason Kokrak 60/1
Charles Howell III 60/1
Martin Laird 60/1
Jamie Lovemark 80/1
Scott Stallings 80/1
Lucas Glover 80/1
Keegan Bradley 80/1
Austin Cook 80/1
Chesson Hadley 80/1
Bryson DeChambeau 80/1
Shane Lowry 100/1
Beau Hossler 100/1
Harris English 100/1
Jimmy Walker 100/1
Dominic Bozzelli 100/1
Bud Cauley 100/1
Patrick Rodgers 100/1
J.B. Holmes 100/1
Graeme McDowell 100/1
Ian Poulter 100/1
Ryan Palmer 100/1
Chris Kirk 100/1
John Huh 100/1
Sam Burns 125/1
Brandon Harkins 125/1
Grayson Murray 125/1
Sam Saunders 125/1
William McGirt 125/1
Nick Watney 100/1
Aaron Wise 125/1
Jim Furyk 150/1
Rory Sabbatini 150/1
Si Woo Kim 150/1
Billy Horschel 150/1
Luke Donald 150/1
Stewart Cink 150/1
C.T. Pan 150/1
Hudson Swafford 150/1
Ben Martin 125/1
Kelly Kraft 150/1
Aaron Baddeley 150/1
Ted Potter, Jr. 150/1
Sangmoon Bae 200/1
Padraig Harrington 250/1
Ernie Els 500/1
Field (all others) 10/1

Mortal Locks: 

Jordan Spieth — I know, picking favorites is getting old — but Jordan Spieth warrants your eyes and wallets whenever he’s teeing it up. Especially at places like Innisbrook, where there’s a premium on ball striking and accuracy. He’s recent woes with the flat stick are well-documented, but also uncharacteristic of the 3-time major champion. Spieth is only getting 8/1 money, so the ROI isn’t incredible — but the player is and that’s why I’m taking the action.

Tony Finau — Is this week Tony Finau puts it all together? I sure hope so. He keeps playing solid golf before giving back whatever ground he made on a couple bad holes. He’s essentially the professional version of your buddy who is a decent golfer but has a blow up hole or two per round — but on the day he’s on, he’s a golden god. At 25/1, I’m hoping Finau can string together four flawless rounds at Copperhead.

Bang for Your Buck:

Louis Oosthuizen — The 2010 Champion Golfer of the Year makes my short list of best bets this week because he’s a stud — an oft-forgotten stud, but a stud nonetheless. Louis Oosthuizen isn’t flashy, looks like Shrek and stripes golf ball. When he’s healthy, he’s one of the most aggravating players to watch — but in a good way. Oosthuizen has shown some glimmers of the brilliance that have earned him a major title and four more major runner-ups. At 40/1, Oosthuizen is you best option to make some quick money.

Zach Johnson — The guy who beat Ooshuizen at the 2015 Open Championship? That’d be Zach Johnson — the 2007 Masters champion. Johnson hasn’t exactly been brilliant in 2018, but he’s certainly been better than he was in 2017. The rebound has given me hope that this is the year ZJ returns to the winner’s circle and this could be the week he does just that. At 60/1, you’ll be overjoyed when he does.

Fun Under $5: 

Bud Cauley — Former can’t-miss kid Bud Cauley has finally been playing the kind of golf that earned him all those accolades in college. Albeit quietly, Cauley has been solid, if not stellar in 2018 and is poised to pick up a win the near future. At 100/1, I’m pretty confident this young man will put it all together — and soon.

Sucker Bet: 

Matt Kuchar — Matt Kuchar is getting 40/1 at a course where there’s a premium on accuracy and grit. Unfortunately, Kuchar hasn’t exhibited much of either of those commodities in recent weeks and, therefore, should be avoided like the plague. It’s tempting, sure — but so are strippers and the stadium blankets they give college freshmen to sign up for credit cards.

There you have it, friends and degenerates. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve to find a cigar lounge that will let me bring my Bengal tiger with me.

Until next time, go and choose wisely…

-Golfstradamus

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