For months, the long-simmering feud between Brooks Koepka and Bryson DeChambeau has dominated headlines on the PGA Tour. Now, as the U.S. attempts to wrest the Ryder Cup from Europe, top golf insiders such as longtime swing coach Butch Harmon have urged the brawny golfers to settle their differences for the benefit of the team.
Before the Ryder Cup begins Friday, the two conversed amicably on the driving range at Whistling Straits Golf Course in a 27-second clip posted this week on several social media sites. Any interactions between Koepka and DeChambeau this weekend in Sheboygan, Wis., will create a juicy subplot to an already compelling rendition of the 43rd Ryder Cup.
— Brooks Koepka (@BKoepka) September 21, 2021
One Colorado sportsbook newcomer, MaximBET, is offering a number of sports betting props involving the duo. Koepka, a four-time major winner, is a considerable -139 favorite on a prop that asks bettors to predict which golfer will record more points over the three-day event. DeChambeau, the 2020 U.S. Open champion, has odds of -105. MaximBET is not offering a tie on the prop.
Will they be paired together?
While DeChambeau has downplayed any tension with Koepka this week, the feud ostensibly began in 2019 when multiple PGA Tour players criticized DeChambeau for his methodical style on the course. Koepka’s exasperation at DeChambeau’s penchant for slow play apparently triggered a testy exchange between the players’ caddies at an August 2019 event. DeChambeau then informed Koepka’s caddie that if his employer had an issue with his slow play, then Koepka should make the comments to his face.
Was standing on the putting green with Koepka's caddie earlier when an irritated Bryson DeChambeau walked up & told him to tell his boss to make any comment about slow play "to my face". Brooks arrived soon after, got the message & ambled over for a chat with the scientist.
— Eamon Lynch (@eamonlynch) August 11, 2019
Tensions escalated during the PGA Championship in May when DeChambeau walked behind Koepka during the latter’s post-round interview with The Golf Channel. Irked by the interruption, Koepka remarked, “I lost my train of thought hearing that bulls–t.” Harmon, the former swing coach of Tiger Woods, has called on the two golfers to reconcile, even making a somewhat implausible suggestion that U.S. Ryder Cup captain Steve Stricker should pair the two together during the biennial event.
A boosted bet at MaximBET contains odds of +250 that DeChambeau and Koepka will be paired and earn at least one point during the Ryder Cup. DeChambeau noted this week that the two golfers had “some great conversations” at last month’s Tour Championship when they dined together in Atlanta, then also chatted over dinner Monday night in Wisconsin. As of Thursday afternoon, Stricker had yet to unveil the pairings for Friday’s four-ball and alternate shot sessions.
Another prop will pay 9/1 odds on a U.S. victory with Koepka as the team’s top scorer. Europe has won four of the last five Ryder Cups, including a 17.5-10.5 drubbing when the event was last held in 2018. If both golfers come up empty on the weekend, with each recording zero total points, Colorado bettors will receive 100/1 on the prop (a max bet of $10).
More importantly, will they get into a fistfight?
MaximBET has also posted a bevy of other props that many bettors will find amusing. It is important to note that the following bets are for entertainment purposes only. The bets have not been approved by Colorado regulators, and MaximBET is unable to accept real-money wagers on the offerings.
The lowest odds are on a prop that a fan will be removed from Whistling Straits for shouting Koepka’s name in a fashion to taunt DeChambeau. Earlier this month, the PGA Tour announced that any course patron would be ejected for yelling “Brooksie” while heckling DeChambeau during a given round.
Ryder Cup props at MaximBET (entertainment-only, not real-money wagers)
- Patron ejected for saying “Brooksie” +100
- DeChambeau put on clock for slow play +200
- DeChambeau speaks to media +300
- Koepka withdraws due to injury +500
- DeChambeau blames loss on hands or driver +1000
- DeChambeau/Koepka side-by-side in team photo +1500
- DeChambeau/Koepka on-course fight +2500
Although The Ryder Cup is reputed for bringing out the competitive juices in both squads, physical altercations at the storied event have rarely occurred. Still, Dustin Johnson and Koepka reportedly had to be separated at a 2018 Ryder Cup afterparty, according to multiple media outlets.
Team Europe captain Padraig Harrington indicated that any tension between Koepka and DeChambeau could oddly benefit the American team. When there is friction between two players but a team is able to overcome the disruptions, the reconciliation could motivate the squad as a whole, he noted. Despite his adversarial relationship with Sergio Garcia on the tour about 15 years ago, Harrington emphasized that the two were able to put their differences aside with a hug at The Ryder Cup.
While Harrington insists that he’s not focused on Stricker’s strategic positioning for the U.S. squad, he did not discount a potential pairing between Koepka and DeChambeau.
“They could be the best of pals this week and could be a great partnership thrown out there,” Harrington said.