The 2019 Men’s U.S. Open Betting Preview: Will Anyone Upset The Big 3?
On Monday, August 26th, the 139th edition of the men’s U.S. Open gets underway live from Flushing Meadows, New York, as the ATP’s best players converge on the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. In the fourth and final Grand Slam of the year, tennis betting sites have Novak Djokovic listed as the clear betting favorite. Djokovic is the reigning U.S. Open champion and a three time winner of this premier tournament. Other tennis greats like Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer aren’t too far behind in the betting odds.
Let’s examine these U.S. Open betting odds to see if anyone can upset “The Big 3” of tennis, check out a few prop bets, and hopefully ace our predictions.
What to Watch For at The U.S. Open
With a growing buzz heading into the final Grand Slam of the year, the following ATP storylines are worth keeping an eye on:
- Can Djokovic win a second straight U.S. Open?
- Will Nadal or Federer defeat Novak?
- Can Roger Federer set the record for most U.S. Open wins in the Open Era?
- Are there any potential upsets of “The Big 3”?
Previous Men’s U.S. Open Winners
Roger Federer is tied with Jimmy Connors and Pete Sampras for the most wins in the Open Era at five apiece. The all-time mark, which includes both the Open Era and Amateur Era, is seven wins held by William Larned, Richard Sears and Bill Tilden. The following is a list of recent ATP U.S. Open winners dating back to 2004:
- Roger Federer from 2004-2008
- Juan Martin del Potro in 2009
- Rafael Nadal in 2010, 2013, 2017
- Novak Djokovic in 2011, 2015, 2018
- Andy Murray in 2012
- Marin Cilic in 2014
- Stan Wawrinka in 2016
Other than Murray and del Potro, the other winners on this list will be competing in the 2019 U.S. Open.
Up close with the World No. 1 👀
— ATP Tour (@ATP_Tour) August 24, 2019
Men’s U.S. Open Betting Odds
The following betting odds are courtesy of BetOnline:
- Novak Djokovic (+120)
- Rafael Nadal (+300)
- Roger Federer (+700)
- Daniil Medvedev (+1200)
- Stefanos Tsitsipas (+2500)
- Alexander Zverev (+2800)
- Dominic Thiem (+2800)
- Nick Kyrgios (+3300)
- Marin Cilic (+4000)
- Stan Wawrinka (+4000)
Men’s U.S. Open Betting Favorites
According to most tennis betting sites, the following men’s players are considered the favorites to win at Flushing Meadows:
Novak Djokovic (+120)
The world’s #1 tennis player Djokovic comes into the U.S. Open having won three tournaments this year including two of the four Grand Slams: Australian Open and Wimbledon. He defeated Rafael Nadal in the Australian Open finals and Roger Federer in the Wimbledon finals. Novak was knocked out of the French Open in the semifinals by Dominic Thiem. Most recently, Djokovic was bounced from the Cincinnati Masters by Daniil Medvedev. It was the second time that Djokovic has lost to Medvedev this year.
On the season, Djokovic has gone 16-4 on hard court surfaces, which is what the U.S. Open surface is considered. Novak has gone 4-2 against Top 5 opponents this year with both losses coming on clay surfaces. One of those losses was at the French Open against Thiem. In Grand Slam play, Djokovic has gone 19-1 on the year.
As mentioned, Djokovic is the defending champion. He missed the 2017 tournament due to an injury. In his last three appearances, Djokovic has gone to three finals and won two of them. Novak has more finals and semifinals appearances than anyone else in this tournament. For his career, Djokovic has a 69-10 record at Flushing Meadows.
Novak will have some tough matches before even making the finals. He could face the red hot Medvedev in the quarterfinals and then face Federer in the semifinals before seeing Nadal in the finals. With that said, Djokovic has won four of the last five Grand Slam tournaments.
Rafael Nadal (+300)
Nadal, ranked 2nd in the world, received the #2 seed for this tournament. He last played in the Canada Masters, a hard court tune-up, and won the tournament by defeating Daniil Medvedev. In addition to the Canada Masters, Nadal has also won the French Open and Rome Masters this year. On the season, Nadal has a 15-2 record on hard courts with those losses coming to Kyrgios in Acapulco and to Djokovic in the Australian Open finals.
Rafael has gone 3-3 against Top 5 ranked players with losses to Federer, Thiem and Djokovic. With that said, Nadal is the top betting favorite behind Djokovic coming into this tournament.
For his career, Nadal has won the U.S Open three times including in 2017 when Djokovic was absent. He made the semifinals last year before losing to Juan Martin del Potro and has a career record of 58-11 at this tournament. Out of “The Big 3,” Nadal has the easier path. Nadal is the top seed in the bottom half of the draw, which means he would only have to get Marin Cilic in the fourth round and Dominic Thiem in the semifinals to make it to the U.S. Open finals for the second time in the last three years. I like his chances.
Roger Federer (+700)
Of “The Big 3,” the world’s #3 ranked Roger Federer has the toughest draw. The all-time leader in Grand Slam victories, will most likely face #15 ranked David Goffin in the 4th round, #7 ranked Kei Nishikori in the quarterfinals and Djokovic in the semifinals. With that said, if anyone can overcome these challenges, it’s Federer.
As mentioned above, Federer is tied for the most U.S. Open titles in the Open Era with five. He has an 85-13 career record at Flushing Meadows in his 18 appearances. However, Federer hasn’t been to the finals since 2015.
Coming into the U.S. Open, Federer has gone 19-3 on hard court surfaces and 14-3 in Grand Slam play. He did get tripped up at the Cincinnati Masters as he lost to Rublev in the Round of 16. Prior to that, he lost in the finals of Wimbledon and won at Halle. Federer has three tournament wins this year and five finals appearances.
Can the five-time U.S. Open winner pull off a small miracle at Flushing Meadows?
— US Open Tennis (@usopen) August 23, 2019
The Best ATP U.S. Open Betting Value
These ATP men’s tennis players offer the best betting value based on their current odds, playing form heading into this Grand Slam tournament, and their past success at the U.S. Open:
Daniil Medvedev (+1200)
Medvedev is arguably the hottest player in the ATP right now. The 23-year old Russian has shot up to 5th in the world and has been beating some of the sport’s best players along the way. He’s only appeared at this Grand Slam on two occasions and has been bounced in the third round or earlier. With that said, Medvedev’s 2019 season has many pundits thinking he could be the only man to upset “The Big 3” at this tournament.
Medvedev just won the Cincinnati Masters, which is the top warmup for the U.S. Open. That was his second tournament win of the year and his 6th overall finals appearance. Daniil has a 30-8 record on hard courts, but is just 5-3 in Grand Slam play. What can’t be overlooked is that Medvedev has gone 2-1 against Djokovic this year including defeating Novak at Cincinnati and Monte Carlo. Medvedev did lose to Nadal in the finals of the Canada Masters, which is another hard court surface.
I expect Medvedev to give Djokovic everything he can handle if they both make it to the quarterfinals.
Stefanos Tsitsipas (+2500)
The 8th ranked men’s tennis star is just 21 years old and still growing in his skills. Nevertheless, he’s been a winning player on the season so far. Tsitsipas won at Marseille and Estoril while finishing runner up at Madrid and Dubai. He was bounced in the Round of 32 at both the Cincinnati and Canada Masters. Tsitsipas has a 20-10 hard court record this year and is 3-3 against the Top 5 ranked players with wins over Nadal, Zverev and Federer. So, he does have the potential to upstage the top seeds at Flushing Meadows.
Tsitsipas has only appeared in the U.S. Open one time and he was bounced in the 2nd round of last year’s tournament. But, there is hope for Stefanos this time around as he did make it to the semifinals of the Australian Open which is another hard court Grand Slam. With a little bit of luck, Tsitsipas could potentially make a deep run and pull off a few upsets along the way.
Top U.S. Open Longshot
Of the longshots, Stan Wawrinka (+4000) has the best chance at pulling off the tournament upset. Wawrinka is 13-9 on hard courts this year, 3-4 against the Top 10, and 6-3 in Grand Slam play for the season. However, the U.S. Open has been his best Grand Slam for his career. In 13 appearances, Wawrinka has gone 40-12 overall and won the 2016 title. He’s made it to three semifinals in his last five appearances. In reality, nobody outside of “The Big 3” will win, but Wawrinka was the last one outside of the sport’s Top 3 players to win this tournament.
— Tennis TV (@TennisTV) August 22, 2019
Men’s U.S. Open Prop Bets
The following U.S. Open men’s prop bets are courtesy of BetOnline:
Men’s Winning Quarter
- 1st Quarter (-135)
- 4th Quarter (+225)
- 2nd Quarter (+500)
- 3rd Quarter (+900)
Novak Djokovic is in the 1st Quarter of the draw and he has fueled this quarter to be the odds on favorite. Nadal’s 4th Quarter has decent value considering his toughest opponents won’t be seen until at least the quarterfinals. Federer is in the 2nd Quarter, but he will end up playing against Novak in the semifinals if he makes it that far. For this prop bet, the safe play is with Djokovic and the 1st Quarter.
‘The Big 3’ Head to Head U.S. Open Records
“The Big 3” have won the last 11 Grand Slam tournaments and that streak should continue as one of them will win the U.S. Open. But, which one will it be? To get a better idea, we need to take a look at how they have fared against each other at Flushing Meadows:
Novak Djokovic vs Roger Federer
Heading into the U.S. Open, these two men have played against each other 48 times. Djokovic holds the advantage with a 26-22 record. Furthermore, Djokovic holds the advantage with a 19-17 record in hard court matches. In 2019, they met just one time, but it was a very important one. Djokovic defeated Federer in the finals of Wimbledon giving him a 10-6 record against Roger in Grand Slam play. Federer hasn’t defeated Djokovic in a Grand Slam since 2012.
At the U.S. Open, these two all-time greats have played against each other six times and each man has three victories apiece. They last met in the 2015 U.S. Open finals and Djokovic won that match in three sets. Djokovic has won three straight U.S. Open matches against Federer. Roger hasn’t defeated Novak in this Grand Slam since 2009. Both men could meet in the semifinals of this year’s tournament.
- All-Time H2H: Djokovic 26 – Federer 22
- S. Open H2H: Djokovic 3 – Federer 3
Novak Djokovic vs Rafael Nadal
I have gone on record many times saying that Djokovic versus Nadal is the greatest rivalry in the history of men’s tennis. These two men have played against each other 54 times with Djokovic holding a 28-26 advantage. Djokovic has dominated Nadal in hard court meetings with a record of 19-7.
With that said, Nadal still has the advantage in Grand Slam play with a record of 9-6. Djokovic has won three straight Grand Slam meetings between the two with a win over Nadal in the Australian Open finals this year. That was one of only two matchups between the top two players in the world. The other meeting came in Rome where Nadal won in the finals.
At the U.S. Open, Nadal has a 2-1 record against Djokovic. However, they haven’t played against each other in this Grand Slam since 2013. These two men could potentially face each other in the finals of this year’s U.S. Open if they can both win their half of the draw.
- All-Time H2H: Djokovic 28 – Nadal 26
- S. Open H2H: Djokovic 1 – Nadal 2
Rafael Nadal vs Roger Federer
Like with Djokovic, Federer comes out on the losing side of things against Nadal as Rafael has a 24-16 record against Roger. However, they’ve met three times this year and Federer holds the 2-1 advantage. Federer also has the advantage on hard courts with an 11 to 9 record against Nadal. Their only hard court match this year was at Indian Wells and Federer won.
In Grand Slam action, Nadal has a massive advantage with a 10-4 record. It should be noted that six of those wins have come at the French Open where Nadal is the “king of clay.” They’ve faced off against each other twice in Grand Slam play this year with Nadal winning at the French Open and Federer winning at Wimbledon.
Surprisingly, these two men have never played each other at the U.S. Open. This year, they can only meet if both make it to the finals.
- All-Time H2H: Nadal 24 – Federer 16
- S. Open H2H: Nadal 0 – Federer 0
Who Will Win the Men’s 2019 U.S. Open?
For me, and most tennis betting sites, Novak Djokovic is the clear cut favorite to win. Novak is 25-2 in his last 27 U.S. Open matches. He’s owned the ATP circuit these last few years as he’s clearly the best player in the world. Novak has also gotten the better of Nadal and Federer over the last few years and should certainly continue that trend in the 2019 U.S. Open. I expect the “Djokster” to win his fourth U.S. Open and his 5th Grand Slam title in the last six tournaments.
We are witnessing the Djokovic era and he’s on pace to become the greatest Grand Slam player in men’s history.