Handicapping a golf tournament is tough enough, but it’s made even more difficult with a new course like at this week’s CJ Cup at Shadow Creek Golf Club. The exclusive resort course in Las Vegas is subbing this year for the CJ Cup’s usual locale, Nine Bridges in JeJu Island, South Korea, because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Matthew Wolff CJ Cup at Shadow Creek
Matthew Wolff finished second in his last two events, and is 18/1 to win this week’s CJ Cup at Shadow Creek Golf Club in Las Vegas. (Image: Getty)

For most of the golfers in the field. it will be the first time they have ever played the layout. The only ones who have played an event here, are Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson in 2018’s made-for-television exhibition match. Neither one is playing this week, so there isn’t a lot of past information to gather to make a decision.

So, with this week’s One Bet, $100, I’m playing it as safe as possible and spreading my money over four golfers. I picked Matthew Wolff, Xander Schauffele, Sungjae Im, and Scottie Scheffler to finish in the top 10. The quartet was getting odds of between +125 to +300. I was tempted to make the four a bet to finish in the top 5 and get longer odds, but I decided to be a tad prudent.

Recent Play Factor at CJ Cup at Shadow Creek

I did take four golfers to finish in the top 5 last week at the Shriners Hospital for Children’s Open at another Las Vegas course. I took Kevin Na, Collin Morikawa, Patrick Cantlay, and Cameron Smith, and none of them could finish fifth or better. The closest one was Cantlay, who tied for eighth.

One Bet, $100

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Wolff, Schauffele, Im, Scheffler – Top 10 Lost: Four Golfers in Top 5 0-3, Down $300

This week I went with the four-golfer idea again, but pulled back a bit. Even though no one has any idea how the golfers will play at Shadow Creek, I’m leaning heavily on recent results with the four. I wasn’t ready to commit to a top-5 finish, but I figure one of them should make the top 10.

Schauffele has the lowest odds at +125. The 26-year-old last played nearly a month ago when he finished fifth at the US Open. In his tournament before that, he tied for second at the Tour Championship.

The next golfer of my four is Wolff at +200. His last two events are even better. He was the runner up at last week’s Shriners, as well at the US Open. He’s the player I feel the most confident in choosing.

Taking Flyers on Im, Scheffler

The other two golfers I picked have longer odds. Im and Scheffler are both at +300 to finish in the top 10 at Shadow Creek.

Im is a bit of a reach, but I believe he could do quite well, and he told reporters that he also likes his chances this week.

“This is my third year playing in the CJ Cup and the past two years, I’ve always finished in the middle of the pack, around 30th to 40th place,” Im said. “Hopefully, this year, I can finish either in the top 10 or the top 5 if possible.”

Scheffler missed the cut at last week’s Shriners, but shot six-under for the two rounds. He also finished at fifth or better in the PGA Championship, The Northern Trust, and the Tour Championship.