Did you happen to watch the pay-per-view match between Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson?
As you are probably aware, the match was a “winner take all” for $9 million!
Unfortunately, I was unable to watch the match, but I did enjoy tracking the results on my phone.
On the days leading up to the match, I found myself pulling more for Woods. He was the betting favorite in Vegas, but I felt that the energy surrounding the match played directly into Mickelson’s hands.
Mickelson is a showman.
He loves the spotlight, and his game is perfectly suited for this type of event. All you had to do was watch the press conferences leading up to the match to see that he was attracting most of the attention.
My favorite moment was watching him “guarantee” a birdie on the first hole for $100,000.
Woods quickly doubled that bet, and I immediately became more interested.
The press conference became must see TV as Woods began to remind Mickelson of his tendencies to hit wayward shots in the more inopportune moments.
Suddenly, all I cared about was whether or not Mickelson was going to come through with his guaranteed birdie on the first hole of the match.
He had a makeable putt, but was unable to capitalize. From that point on, Mickelson seemed to have a slight lead for most of the match. Woods took a brief one-hole lead, but that didn’t last long.
When all was said and done, Mickelson defeated Woods on the 22nd hole of the match. You could not have scripted a better finish than to have Mickelson roll in a short birdie putt to defeat the guy who has dominated him throughout their professional careers.
For what it’s worth, having Mickelson win this match was great for golf.
In fact, I believe it will help keep the Tiger-Phil rivalry going for many more years.
Woods’ career stats will always outshine those of Mickelson’s, but he can forever claim to have won “The Match.”
Whether you were pulling for either one of these guys, you have to appreciate what they have both meant to the game of golf.
They are the modern day Jack and Arnie. In football terms, they are Brady and Manning.
Woods has always been the no-nonsense competitor who refused to let anybody slow him down. Mickelson, on the other hand, has always been the crowd favorite that everybody had an easier time relating with.
Bravo to these guys for an entertaining event. Perhaps we will see a rematch down the road?