When the news came that the PGA Tour was launching its Player Impact program to reward the players who move the needle the most, the first thing I had in mind was that Tiger Woods would be at home in Florida and trembling from his terrible car accident in February, his head recovered and muttered, “Where was that 20 years ago when I carried the sport on my shoulders?” There was a time when Woods held his first 14 major championships The Path to Becoming Most Famous Player of All Sports, where he and his team rummaged on the PGA Tour about using his name and image to promote his product while Woods got none of it.
Woods won more tournaments than anyone on the world and raised sponsorship and wallets to levels no one could imagine. He filled the pockets of then PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem and his senior executives as well as the players he was up against – and he got none of it.
Now the PGA Tour is with the unique program it got ready to reward the players who draw the most eyeballs on their product.
The program contradicts the very foundation on which the sport exists by keeping the $ 40 million in the pot regardless of their results on the golf course essentially divided between 10 players.
Success on the PGA Tour – and in all of professional golf – has always been based solely on production on the golf course. This is a program that makes the rich richer regardless of the results and ignores the base on the tour. This can’t help but create an unhealthy amount of jealousy among gamers.
Take Rickie Fowler, for example. He is one of the most marketable and well-known players in the sport, but is in a crisis in which he has won a single tournament since 2017.
What if, despite his slump due to his popularity, Fowler continues to show the » featured groups « from PGA Tour Live? It has become an inside golf joke that Fowler is one of the featured groups every week – even when struggling with his game.
Is it fair that Fowler stays part of these featured groups when others are less well-known players who have won multiple wins since Fowler’s last win – Webb Simpson, Daniel Berger, Jim Herman and Brendon Todd, to name a few – are overlooked?
How are these players supposed to improve their respective profiles when the PGA Tour essentially ignoring them?
Herman, a three-time PGA Tour winner who won in 2019 and 2020 but isn’t one of the tour’s best-known players, offered this ironic tweet on Wednesday: « My ship has come in! » / p> The deck is stacked against players who do not have the same stamp of approval and profile as Fowler. Suppose Fowler ends up in the top 10 players in this algorithm the Tour implemented to rank them by their Impact Score and make money even though they haven’t been able to make a cut in months? Is that fair?
This is not an attack on Fowler. He is simply the perfect current example of a high profile player who is struggling and yet continues to be publicly promoted by the PGA Tour. And that’s not fair to its colleagues who produce.
The PGA Tour said its goal is to « recognize and reward players who move the needle positively ». Part of the movement of that needle, however, is the PGA Tour propelling their players. This can become a slippery slope for the tour.
A document presented to the players by the PGA Tour showing the simulated impact scores based on the 2019 numbers of how the leaderboard will work was shown by Woods, who in that year won the Masters, at the top, followed by Rory McIlroy, Brooks Koepka, Phil Mickelson and Fowler. Jordan Spieth, Dustin Johnson, Justin Thomas, Justin Rose and Adam Scott completed the top 10.
The current players likely to make money are Bryson DeChambeau, who made himself the most talked about person in the game, Johnson who is # 1, Koepka, McIlroy, Thomas and maybe even Mickelson, who has two victories since 2013, are starting to try their hand at the Champions Tour.
The question is whether Woods can make money, if considering he likely won’t play at all in 2021 and may never play competitively again depending on how he recovers from his injuries.
Although no one would (or should) be sorry for Woods for doing the The rest of his life will have no financial worries because he missed that boondoggle, it won’t stop him from shaking his head and thinking. The PGA Tour is 20 years too late with this program.
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