During Covers’ weekly spot on TSN Radio’s Inside The Lines this past Sunday, co-host Arnie Spanier asked me for my Masters picks.
"You could say Tiger, but we'll laugh at you,” he said. “We know he's going to be on the leaderboard. There's no value in that.”
I gave Matt Kuchar (33-1) as my long shot play, but I also argued that I didn’t agree that there is no value in taking Tiger.
A day before the tournament is set to begin, you can find Tiger being offered anywhere between 3-1 and 5-1. And though that may not sound like much for a golf tournament where it’s man vs. the field, some historical context may change your mind.
If you truly believe that Tiger is “back”, you have to look at when he had never left.
He won his last major at the 2008 U.S. Open, a year in which he won four events, nearly $6 million in prize money and finished runner-up at the Masters.
Tiger was set as a +110 favorite to win at Augusta that year.
It sounds absurd looking back now, but patrons lined up at the sportsbooks to play it and they very nearly cashed in.
So far this year, Woods has won three tournaments in five events and he's piled up almost $4 million in cash. You could argue that he's not officially "back" but I'm not sure who'd listen.
And I can assure you that if Tiger wins Sunday, you won’t find a book from New York to Macau offering him at 5-1 to win a major any time soon.