Djokovic out with Medvedev leading the market
Shortly after our pre-draw preview was published, Novak Djokovic pulled out of the US Open due to issues relating to his entry into America. The effect of this is that there are now three players leading the outright market in single-digit pricing - Daniil Medvedev 3.814/5, Rafa Nadal 5.59/2 and Carlos Alcaraz 6.611/2.
Kyrgios with threat to Medvedev in quarter one
Tournament favourite Medvedev has, however, picked up the player no-one wanted in their bracket - Nick Kyrgios. Potentially, Medvedev will face the Australian in round four, in a repeat of their match in Montreal earlier this month which Kyrgios won in three sets. Alex De Minaur, Pablo Carreno-Busta and Felix Auger-Aliassime play on the support card to Medvedev and Kyrgios in quarter one, and will also be hoping to make in impact into week two.
Fritz with chance in wide open quarter two
Quarter two features Stefanos Tsitsipas 19.018/1, who could have a tricky run in the early matches with Lorenzo Sonego and Maxime Cressy in particular, opponents who could give him a test. Cressy in round three looks a real toughie for the Greek, with the American holding serve over 90% on hard court over the season so far - and therefore draw him into a high variance match in the early stages of the tournament.
With Matteo Berrettini, Taylor Fritz, Casper Ruud, Sebastian Korda and grass sensation Tim van Rijthoven also in quarter two, the section looks wide open. I like Fritz's chances - the bottom half of quarter two looks weaker, and Fritz is running at 107% combined service/return points won on hard court this year - excellent numbers.
However, the market also is aware of the American's improvement, making him 25.024/1 for the title, barely behind Tsitsipas. It will be interesting to see where Fritz stands in the quarter winner market prices, when available.
Alcaraz with several tough early rounds
Alcaraz leads the way in quarter three, with a clash against the shock Cincinnati winner Borna Coric potentially in round three. With Jenson Brooksby a potential opponent early in the tournament also, there's some difficulty in week one for the Spaniard.
Having said that, if he gets through those, the remainder of quarter three doesn't look hugely problematic - yes, Alcaraz will face Hubert Hurkacz and Jannik Sinner potentially, but that's not disastrous compared to the opponents he could have received in rounds four or five.
Nadal fitness likely to dictate fourth quarter
Finally, the bottom bracket features British interest with Cameron Norrie opening up against Benoit Paire, and potentially tested in round three against John Isner. Andrey Rublev is another obvious threat in that Q4, but of course, most eyes will be on Rafa Nadal who has barely played since Wimbledon.
Nadal couldn't have picked much of an easier match to get himself some game time than the Australian wild card Rinky Hijikata, but a second round match against one of two enigmas - Fabio Fognini and Aslan Karatsev - could be very fun if either are on their game.
Ultimately, that quarter four is on Nadal's racquet, but we really don't have much insight into his fitness - far from ideal ahead of seven potentially best of five set matches over the coming fortnight.