Cognizant Classic in The Palm Beaches

PGA National (Champion Course)

The Loop

Home Games

April 11, 2010

Who will win this thing?

Heck, I don't know. I'm the jabroni who thought this would be too-much, too-soon for the man who compartmentalizes better than a woman with a small closet.

But look at this leaderboard. Then look at my chickenskin every time I see the highlight of Phil dunking it at 14 yesterday. It's like a Super Bowl Sunday and a final four are suiting up for the big finish. If there's one thing I know, golf is back. Is it better than ever? Maybe not. But it's bigger than ever.

As soon as it all broke -- Tiger's trail of transgressions -- I got an e-mail from an old colleague at Sports Illustrated: "Golf is dead."

I wrote back: "Happy Thanksgiving to you too."

I'm forever done forecasting finishes, but I must admit: I predicted that short-term, Tiger was an ax to the trunk of the giving tree that is golf. But long-term, I always said it would make Tiger more interesting; that he transcended the game more than he did by winning 14 majors; and I said that when he came back he would boost ratings beyond golf's wildest dreams. (First round ratings at Augusta were up 50% from last year, 80% from 2008. I can't wait to see the numbers from the weekend.)

Tiger, like him or hate him, and there aren't many in betweens any more, the guy is good for golf, "damn it." (His words, not mine.) He once inspired us to get off the sofa and go to the driving range. Now he inspires me to get off the sofa and shower. But after this week, it's pretty clear, golf is not dead.

And so then to the question: Who do I want to win? My heart is with Phil. I Tweeted yesterday that Tiger is my new Yankees, a team I love to hate, which makes Phil my Red Sox. Go Sox. But honestly, I want golf to win. That's all that I really care about.

Here are a few more of my tweets from yesterday:


--Matty G.