Monday, July 7, 2008

Is the 'Tiger Tour' Idea Really That Good?

Recently I ran across this article by Eric Adelson of, a very well-written, thought out piece about the ongoing conversation of a Tiger Tour.

If you're not familiar, the gist of the Tiger Tour argument is Woods could take golf globalization to a completely different level, eliminate the middle man between himself and the cash (similar to an actor producing his own movie) and loosening the monopoly grip the PGA Tour has on golf.

I agree with a lot of Adelson's points except this one.

The Tour has excelled as golf's Microsoft, building its own business while foreign tours struggle to compete.

Well, isn't that true for all sports? Maybe I'm being ignorant, but is there another major sport that thrives in a part of the world better than the USA? We dominate American football, basketball, baseball, golf and tennis, when looking at coverage and events.

Also, the diversity in golf tours is good for experience. Americans of all caliber travel overseas to work on their games as a professional. The Sunshine Tour, the Asian Tour, the Canadian Tour -- all of these are good for golf in different ways, and aren't necessarily getting "beat" by the PGA Tour, it's just sports, all sports, have a top league and people strive to get there.

Adelson did an enormous amount of research and found some interesting numbers (When Tiger turned pro, nine Tour members earned $1 million annually in pay. A decade later, that number is 99.) but I just think a Tiger Tour is too greed-driven.

Woods made $115 million last year and that number won't be going down anytime soon, so why would he jeopardize the future of a sport, his sport, to introduce something that would lose a lot of popularity amongst his peers.

Like Adelson pointed out, Greg Norman tried this with a World Tour in 1996, but got the idea shot down by PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem. The idea has been brought up, but I have a feeling it would be the beginning of the end for one of the two.

Also, why would Tiger put himself in such a jeopardizing situation? He's the King of Sports, why dip your toes into unfamiliar waters?


John said...

We dominate baseball, basketball and tennis?

You sure about that, Shane?

We may dominate in how much of it is on TV here, but that's the only way.

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