US Open men's preview: Djoker the fave, but Rafa sizzling

Over the last two years, Serbia’s Novak Djokovic and Great Britain’s Andy Murray have emerged as the sport’s two best hard court players. However, it is the greatest clay court player of all time who is grabbing all of the headlines heading into this year’s US Open.

Buoyed by consecutive US Open Cup Series titles in Montreal and Cincinnati, Spain’s Rafael Nadal is the hottest player in tennis. Nadal is undefeated on hard courts this year with a record of 15-0 including titles at the prestigious Indian Wells tournament in California in March as well as Montreal and Cincinnati.

Nadal, +290 to win the tournament, has a solid track record at the year’s final major. While he withdrew from the tournament in 2012 due to injury, he had previously made the semifinal or better in 4 consecutive years. Furthermore, he won the tournament in 2010 and lost to Djokovic in the final in 2011.

Novak Djokovic is the oddsmakers’ favorite at +190 and is looking to improve on his incredible run of 13 consecutive Grand Slam semifinal appearances. Djokovic has made the final each of the last 3 years and will be tough to beat.

Defending US Open Champion Andy Murray is sitting at a generous +365. Murray has had an excellent 12 months having won his first two major titles and has had success against Djokovic having won 5 of their last 10 meetings.

Darkhorses include the hard hitting Jerzy Janowicz (+11500) and Milos Raonic (+12500). American John Isner (+10500) has made the final in 3 of 4 hard court events this summer and can certainly make a deep run looking for his first grand slam title with the home crowd behind him.

Click here to read Jay Primetown's women's preview.

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