Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Tiger and Phil Paired, But Is That Still a Big Deal?

In the early part of this millennium, Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson being in a group meant the golf world stopped for a day and focused only on them. Nick Watney once told me, when I asked him what it felt like to be famous, "I played once with Tiger and Phil ... I'm not famous, they are," and he is probably true. For most, those two golfers WERE the pinnacle in the game.

But is that the case anymore? This week at the WGC-Cadillac Championship at Doral, Tiger and Phil will join Graeme McDowell for the first two days, an incredible threesome that, honestly, is highlighted by McDowell, the best of the three right now. Phil and Tiger are two guys that, like politicians, can float a lot of the way on their past accomplishments, but are they any bigger than some of these other threesomes that will be featured at Doral?

Look at a few of them ...

-- Dustin Johnson, Bubba Watson and Ian Poulter
-- Martin Kaymer, Lee Westwood and Luke Donald
-- Rickie Fowler, Ryo Ishikawa and Jhonattan Vegas

Would you rather follow Tiger and Phil around and not get to see these guys paired together? Honestly, I think I'd take any of those three groups over the Tiger-Phil-Graeme one, just because it seems those groups would be more exciting to watch. Sure, you'd miss Phil's goofy grins and fist bumps, but I think i'd be okay with that, and you'd get to either watch the Bombers, The Top Dogs or the Young Talent.

I just don't know if Phil and Tiger being together on anything but a Sunday is front page news these days. These guys aren't the same golfers, and it seems unfair to some of the people actually playing great golf that them being in a group together is the headline-stealing story out of Doral.

But, if they played well, I could quickly change my mind.

Getty Images


Anonymous said...

The golf fans at Doral will give you the answer, the Tv ratings on Thursday and Friday will give you the answer. How short is your memory, Arnold Palmer has not really played competitive golf for about 40 years, does he still draw a crowd on the golf course and TV? The cachet that Tiger and Phil has built up, unless another transcendent golfer comes along right now, then I believe the draw for those 2 guys will be there

Shane B. said...

Fair, and intelligent, point.

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