LAST TOURNAMENT: U.S. Open (Gary Woodland)
THIS WEEK: Travelers Championship, June 20-23
TPC River Highlands, Cromwell, Conn. (Par 70, 6,841 yards)
Purse: $7.2 million (Winner: $1.26 million – Based on 2018)
Defending champion: Bubba Watson
FedEx Cup leader: Matt Kuchar
Television: Thursday-Friday, 3-6 p.m. ET (Golf Channel). Saturday-Sunday, 1-2:45 p.m. (GC), 3-6 p.m. (CBS).
NOTES: Norway’s Viktor Hovland makes his professional debut after taking low amateur honors with a T12 at the U.S. Open. So, too, does former Oklahoma State teammate Matthew Wolff, the consensus collegiate player of the year. Wolff finished 50th at this year’s Waste Management Open after opening with a 67. … Watson is a three-time winner of the event, one shy of Billy Casper’s record four. Watson will be paired with Brooks Koepka and Tony Finau for the first two rounds. … Phil Mickelson is the event’s only back-to-back champion (2001-02) and is in the field for the first time since 2003. He is paired with 2017 event winner Jordan Spieth and 2012 winner Marc Leishman. … Jim Furyk holds the 18-hole course record with a 58 in the fourth round in 2016, which is also the lowest round in PGA Tour history. Kenny Perry (258, 2009), holds the 72-hole record. … Paul Casey failed to close out a four-shot lead entering the final round last year, and lost out to Watson in a playoff in 2015.
BEST BETS: Koepka (7/1 by PointsBet) has only two PGA Tour wins outside of his four major titles. The world’s top-ranked player is coming off his third runner-up finish of the season at the U.S. Open. … Patrick Cantlay (10/1) won three weeks ago at the Memorial and returns to the site where he set a PGA Tour 18-hole amateur record with a 60 in 2011. … Francesco Molinari (18/1) has a win and two other top-5s this season, along with the stellar iron play to go low on a very scorable course. … Hovland (60/1) held his own while paired with Koepka and Molinari for the first two rounds at Pebble Beach before closing with a 67 to break Jack Nicklaus’ 72-hole amateur scoring record in the U.S. Open. He was also the low amateur at this year’s Masters and won the Ben Hogan Award as the nation’s top collegiate player.
NEXT WEEK: Rocket Mortgage Classic, Detroit.