Friday Western Open Semi Live Blog

Steve DiMeglio, Golf Journalist Extraordinaire

From a USA Today article, Steve DiMeglio:

[Woods has] made more than $1 billion in his career, has two children at home he adores more than anything. So why play on?

Woods adores his children, unlike all those other assholes on Tour who despise their kids.  I mean, Jason Day doesn’t even care enough about his wife and kids to bang creepy, diseasy, siliconed porn chicks.  Hell no, Jason travels around with his family and is never away from them.  Damn, Jason, give them some space; spend a little time with your neighbor’s college coed daughter or a Perkins waitress.  Too bad Jason doesn’t adore his kid like good ole Tiger.

BREAKING NEWS!  From JoseyWales:

Breaking News! Tiger Woods won’t play Fry’s…or anything else until 2016 because of surgery. Morning Drive ratings soar! Golf Channel discussion boards blow up!  Lanny H on suicide watch!

Here’s a link to Woods’s announcement.

A sentence of note:

Tiger Woods, a 14-time major champion and winner of more than 100 events worldwide, announced Friday that he has undergone a second successful microdiscectomy surgery on his back.

A second successful surgery?  Are those regular maintenance procedures like oil changes or something?

By the way, I TOLD you guys Woods was grabbing at his back at the Wyndham.  Remember how the “real media” tried to cover it up until we made a big deal of it?  (Well, that’s how I choose to remember it, anyway.)

I already had Golf Channel on watching the event, so don’t blast me for seeing this Woods coverage, but David Duval — my, how far he has fallen — just said we’ll have to wait to see what effect this has on Woods’s “15th, 16th, 17th, and 18th majors.”

Hey, Tim Finchem, too bad you already showed your hand by granting Woods an exemption into the December Hero event.  Had you dragged your feet, you could have held on to a shred of credibility.

1:35 pm Update:  This online radio coverage is great.  Far fewer distractions than on TV, and plenty of commentary about darn near the complete field.

12:50 pm Update: Free Radio Coverage

Here’s a link to free live radio coverage.

The Eternal Season:  Everyone jokes about being sick of Rory’s Omega theme song.  It just won’t go away.  You know something else that won’t go away?  The golf season:

  • Sept. 27  PGA Tour season ends
  • (off week)
  • Oct 8-11  Presidents Cup
  • Oct 15  New season begins (a season which will cram in the Olympics)

Talk about overdoing it.  A 17-day off-season, and the Presidents Cup — which will be hyped as if it’s the Masters — in the middle of that period.  Imagine the NFL doing that:  Super Bowl; off week; Pro Bowl; opening week for the next season.

Golf Media Speak to English: “Golf is at a good place right now”; “These guys are really fun to watch.”  Translastion: “We dumbed down the audience so they think Only Tiger Kardashian Matters, and now his career is over.  We planned to milk it for another decade, and he didn’t even get close enough to Jack to sniff his tighty-whiteys.  (Don’t like that phrasing?  Tough.  I learned it from Joe Passov, Golf Magazine: “[Rory] can’t sniff Tiger’s tighty-whities.”)

USA! USA! USA!  I saw the start of the Soldheim Cup this morning, and all the fans were dutifully, robotically chanting “USA! USA! USA!”  I thought of a couple of things:

  • We’ve discussed before how tame today’s “patriotic” sporting events are compared to the Cold War era Olympics, so I won’t repeat.  But I will mention the Bobby Fischer-Boris Spassky chess match of 1972, which I was reminded of by a trailer for a new movie I first saw in a theater a couple of weeks ago.  (It looks a little overdone, but that’s Hollywood.)  Today’s “patriotic” competitions don’t hold 1/1,000,000 of the drama of that chess match.  And, for the record, not one member of the audience felt the need to chant “USA! USA! USA!”
  • Olympics golf next year will be going up going up against not only all the real Olympics events, but also the final leg of the 2016 elections.  If Trump is still in the running, no one will bother to watch gymnastics, much less golf.
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53 Responses to Friday Western Open Semi Live Blog

  1. Anonymous says:

    I looked at the team roster for the Presiden’s Cup. I can’t believe Tiger isn’t on it. With his stellar play this year I thought he would be a “shoe in”. Huh. Weird….

    • lannyh says:

      Rather than troll about Woods, feigning a sarcastic stance when the truth is you really DO want to discuss only him, why don’t you make yourself useful. Go average his results for each year of his career. Count MC’s as 100. I’d toss out the year’s high and low, or maybe two highs and two lows, just to give a more realistic picture. Then graph those. Or, if you run the numbers, I’ll graph them.

  2. HennyB says:

    Last week Morning Drive’s Charlie Rymer was still pushing the narrative that if they want anyone to even watch the Presidents Cup they need Woods and Mickelson on the team. Nobody moves the needle like Tiger. TV rating are very important and the only way your going to get them is by having this dynamic duo on your roster.

    • lannyh says:

      A couple of thoughts: Have you ever heard announcers in any other sport say such things? The Cowboys are the biggest franchise in sports, but you don’t hear the announcers talking about how everyone should pull for them because they are “good for TV ratings.” 2. Ratings are “inside baseball” to be discussed by management, not “sports commentators.” 3.They create the outcome by obsessing over it. Like, with Trump right now. The media is obsessing over him, making his every utterance into a major news story. His debates are getting record-setting ratings.

      • HennyB says:

        Never. I don’t even recall hearing such things about the Yankees. When the Yankees miss the playoffs, they are virtually an after thought. You don’t hear announcers saying this like, “The playoffs would be so much better if the Yankees were chasing another pennant” or “Nobody is going to watch the World Series because the Yankees aren’t playing”.

      • RatingsMatter says:

        If the NFL had their way they would have Dallas vs New England in the Super Bowl.
        If MLB had their way they would have Yankees vs Dodgers or Mets or Cubs in the World Series.
        If the PGA Tour had their way they would have Tiger in the mix as often as possible.

        At the end of the day these organizations really don’t care what fans think. It’s all about making more money. And, while fans complain they still show up so there’s no reason for these organizations to do anything different.

      • lannyh says:

        But we don’t see, “Will football die if Seattle keeps winning.?” “Seattle is ‘parity’ — ickky!!! Or, “With Dallas missing from this year’s playoffs, ratings are down, down, down.” Or headlines like, “Tony Romo Makes AWESOME Tweet during Super Bowl.”

      • RatingsMatter says:

        No, but lets use last year’s World Series with Kansas City vs. San Fran. There were definitely grumblings about how “no one” was going to watch this series. And, you here all the time about how Green Bay vs New England would be so much better of a Super Bowl than Tennessee vs St Louis.

      • lannyh says:

        But do you hear that being front-and-center every week during the NFL games and on the pre/post-game coverage?

        Do you see headlines like, “Dallas-less Playoffs Hit Five-Year Ratings Low”?

      • RatingsMatter says:

        You do hear it among talk shows, yes, but not during the actual game.

  3. JoseyWales says:

    Ratings mean squat to the public but they mean EVERYTHING to TV people…high ratings mean adv. dollars, job security, career advancement and money, money, money. Low ratings mean YOUR FIRED. TV sales people’s jobs rely on ratings and demographics. The better the ratings and demos the more they can charge for advertising and the more sales commissions/bonuses they make. Same goes for producers, on-air personalities and management. The lower the ratings the less they can charge, people lose their jobs, adv. agencies turn away, morale slumps.
    Hot products like Donald Trump and Tiger Woods mean ratings and ratings mean dollars. It’s the same with Facebook “Likes”, website “page views”, Twitter followers, discussion board comments, Instagram accounts, clicks, etc…it all translates into dollars. Cleavage means money…button down shirts do not.
    To quote Hyman Roth…”it’s not personal, it’s business”

    • lannyh says:

      That’s obvious, but why does the golf media feel the need to discuss the rating? I watched a ton of the CNN coverage pre- and post-debate this week. Not once did they bring up the topic of ratings.

      And then you have the quality of viewers. Golf has always attracted top-tier sponsors: stock brokers, investment advisors, banks, luxury cars, corporate consultants, corporate accounting firms. They never really went after the fast food and chewing gum crowd.

    • lannyh says:

      That’s obvious, but why does the golf media feel the need to discuss the rating? I watched a ton of the CNN coverage pre- and post-debate this week. Not once did they bring up the topic of ratings.

  4. JoseyWales says:

    “but why does the golf media feel the need to discuss the rating? ”
    Because golf on TV is so much more fragile than other sports…they are worried sick nobody will watch without Tiger Woods around. Golf always been a niche sport with marginal ratings and dead spots…and with a fan base that is slowly deserting the game, the golf media is paranoid and fearful that it will all go away and they will be out of work. If the Golf Channel were to disappear tomorrow do you think Rich Lerner, Kelly T., Charlie Rymer, Paige Mackenzie, and that crew would be offered jobs at CNN?…or ESPN?…or anywhere other than maybe the Food Network or QVC? No way. The golf media is a fragile, insecure bunch of mostly no-talents that would not have jobs were it not for golf. They discuss ratings because they are constantly worried about ratings.

    • lannyh says:

      About Charlie, Paige, et al, no, they would not likely find additional TV work. Certainly not all of them. I was thinking about this recently in connection with Erik Kuselias. When he left, he had far broader appeal to potential employers. He wasn’t all-in with golf.

      But, I still have my question. Let me think of an example… Some of the hosts of political shows on MSNBC have been under ratings pressure, and some have even lost their jobs. But they didn’t/don’t come on air and talk about how good floods and riots are for their ratings. We don’t hear about the “riot effect” or “severe weather effect” as if we are all supposed to root for riots and hurricanes. I guess because we are supposed to give two damns about their ratings and jobs.

  5. JoseyWales says:

    Golf Channel TV ratings…week of 9/7-9/13/15
    Prime Time 112,000…down 12% from last week
    Total Day 84,000…down 25% from last week
    Morning Drive 39,000…down 30% from last week… this is THE LOWEST MORNING DRIVE RATING OF THE ENTIRE YEAR. The next lowest number was 43,000 the week of the Byron Nelson Tourn. This is THE PLAYOFFS…supposedly a big time in golf…big prize money at stake…big time players…and yet very few people care…very few people are paying attention. These numbers are pathetic.

    source: Nielsen

    • lannyh says:

      One word: Football. There are other factors, but that’s a huge one. There’s a reason they used to call the PGA Championship “Glory’s Last Shot.”

  6. DanishDude says:

    There’s no chanting or cheering in chess.

    “Chess is not a stadium sport where adrenaline from cheering home crowd helps you. Adds distractions, emotional tension, not good for chess.”
    Garry Kasparov

  7. Anonymous says:

    Lanny, I think I was misunderstood. I do not wish to only talk about Tiger nor was I just “trolling”. My sense of humor is not well understood I guess. I personally am glad that he wasn’t a “captains” pick. That would have been stupid. Then we would have really had something to talk about. I nearly threw up when he was picked for the last Ryder Cup. Trust me I’m no fan and never have been. I’m tired of the favoritism and the propping up efforts just like everyone else. I only thought it was worth noting that common sense prevailed in this years Presidents cup team members. I’m surprised and delighted about this. This was my only point. Sorry if it seemed sarcastic. I’ll try to make myself useful…

    • Sports-realist. says:

      No probelms, I followed your humor anonymous, but try picking a REAL name, as it’s the anonymous ones who tend to fire a shot and then leave……..Lanny’s nicer when you pick a name….lol…

    • DanishDude says:

      Don’t worry about it. I guess the only one missing the humour was Lanny.
      It kinda reminds me of Basil in Fawlty Towers (don’t mention the war.. I did once but I think I got away with it)

      • Sports-realist. says:

        lol….speaking of….my gosh Day is playing about as good a golf as you can play….I don’t care if you are talking about Jack, Eldrick, Me(well, maybe I’ve played better but) everyone else is a 2nd class citizen right now…..
        …..Forget the past….IF, Rory, Jason, and Jordan are on all cylinders next season, the rest of the tour might just take the year off……Could be possibly the BEST 3 the tour has EVER seen at one time…..And yes BETTER than Jack, Palmer, and Player, mainly due to the scoring……

      • lannyh says:

        Rory and Jordan are playing okay, though, which bodes well for next week.

    • lannyh says:

      No problem. I often type whatever occurs to me without a lot of filtering. I think I was interpreting it as the work of a double- or triple-spy. If Couples had still been captain, Woods’d have been a captain’s pick. 🙂

  8. RealGolfFan says:

    Golf is unique in that it’s played all over the country and all over the world so no matter the time of year, there is some place to play golf in “good” weather. Thus the possibility of having events all year long. We all know the big boys basically shut it down from about November until February or March with maybe an event here or there. For the guys trying to make it out on tour, it provides an “easier” path by playing in lesser events with the big names resting.

    For purposes of an example, you look at Tiger’s career and after his first few years, he really never played more than 15-20 events all year. Other journeymen type players were grinding it out, playing 30+ events a year, and they had to in order to make the money/points to stay on tour. They didn’t have the luxury of playing just 15-20 events.

    • lannyh says:

      ” the big boys basically shut it down from about November until February or March”

      My contention is that FANS basically shut it down from the PGA Championship until January (some would say April).

      I would prefer — and I have zero dollar at stake, but just speaking as a fan — the Tour jettisoning the “playoffs” because that would inevitably bolster the West Coast Jan/Feb events.

      The “fall series” was always a bit of a string of tourneys, and that was fine. Also, the season could return to the calendar year.

      • RealGolfFan says:

        But none of that makes more money….and that’s what it’s about.

      • lannyh says:

        It’s about money for the NFL, too, and their season, playoffs and all, is September-January.

        There’s a point of diminishing returns, and I don’t hear the NFL bragging about a 3.9 Nielsen rating like the PGA Tour does.

      • RealGolfFan says:

        The NFL/MLB have defined stadiums in defined locations making weather a bigger factor. You’re not going to play football in Arizona or Texas in June/July/August just like the MLB isn’t going to play baseball in New York in January.

        PGA? June/July/August? Let’s go to Wisky or MIchigan or the northeast. December/January/February? Let’s go to Southern Cal or AZ or Florida. When you have this kind of flexibility, why limit the season to, say, 30 events, when you can make 10’s of millions of dollars more by having 40+?

      • lannyh says:

        Well, like I said, there’s a point of diminishing returns. Why not have two tournaments a week, a 3-day plus a 4-day?

        Look, we all understand the object is to maximize dollars for the PGA Tour. However, that is NOT the goal of the USGA. (Not in theory, anyway.)

        But people don’t always make the right decisions. And the PGA Tour/golf media constantly whines about how things aren’t good enough for them.

  9. JoseyWales says:

    Breaking News! Tiger Woods won’t play Fry’s…or anything else until 2016 because of surgery. Morning Drive ratings soar! Golf Channel discussion boards blow up!
    Lanny H on suicide watch!

    • lannyh says:

      Wow, Josey. You should have my job. You are way ahead of me. I thought you were trying to pull a bad gag. I’m going to cut-and-paste your comment and put it on the front page, if you don’t mind. Okay to do so and use your handle?

      By the way, you got two of the three right.

      I guess Woods would go to any length to avoid the Frys.

    • TigerFan says:

      And the PED use conversation returns with authoritah

      • lannyh says:

        Haha, you’re right. I’ll get a multitude of views the next couple of days via Google searches for “Tiger Woods PEDs.”

        By the way, I just saw a South Park last night where three government agents left town and told everyone they were leaving Cartman with the authoritah to oversee the matter at hand. Jakosaurs or something.

  10. JoseyWales says:

    Tiger Woods controls the golf media and pulls its strings…I find it hilarious that a guy who has lost his game and is basically washed up as a player can still play the media and the gullible public like a violin. His untimely announcement will bury the Solheim Cup and The Western Open. Jason Day, Rory and Spieth are now page two news…pathetic.

  11. JoseyWales says:

    Woods “officially announced” he was playing Fry’s on Sept. 14…his back surgery took place on Sept. 16…wtf?

  12. TigerRules says:

    Hey Lanny, flip over to EspnNews if you have it!

  13. SecondClass says:

    Round 1 of the Solheim Cup almost in the books and no mention of it, pretty much anywhere.

    • lannyh says:

      I can’t get into it, myself. Sorry. I hate how the American women try to imitate the men in using “exciting” gestures. Golf is about class. If I want to see a woman try to intimidate with a fist pump, I’ll go with the real deal and Ronda Rousey.

  14. Anonymous says:

    Larry. You always want to compare what other sports announcers say and do and compare it to golf. All sports are different. To compare the Dallas cowboys to tiger is ridiculous. There are many differences, one obviously being a team sport vs individual. Even golf and tennis are different in how the public wants an underdog vs a favourite to win. In NCCA basketball – everyone loves a Cinderella story. In other sports – not so much. You hate on tiger too much Larry. You need to take easy on him.

    • lannyh says:

      Funny, the golf media was never “different” before. (Now, we’ll hear, ‘That’s because of social media!’ Right, the television broadcasts obsess over an out-of-contention Woods because of new-fangled moving TV pictures.)

      See, intellectually lazy or weak people always falter in the face of logic. If someone says, “Mussolini and Hitler were much alike,” the weak/lazy/dishonest person would say, “That shows how stupid you are! One spoke German, the other Italian! Totally different thing! You fool, you idiot!”

      And, nowadays, they add, “HATER!!!”

  15. Bird says:

    “Woods will be 85 years old, with alzheimer’s, and Golf Channel will say, ‘Now he won’t have memories of the past five decades of poor play. I expect to see the old Tiger next year!'”

    What category would 85 be? Super-duper senior?

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