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Tiger Woods Pockets Millions Despite Barely Hitting a Shot

By: | Thu 03 Mar 2022

THE world has gone mad! Incredibly, Tiger Woods has won $8m for generating more media interest than any other golfer in 2021 - even though he played just one tournament all year. 

He is the first winner of the PGA Tour's Player Impact Programme (PIP). The scheme was introduced to reward competitors for generating positive interest in the American circuit. 

The irony in all of this is that Woods is not a fan of social media, one of the key areas used to identify the winner. But the car crash he was involved in last February resulted in huge public interest in his recovery from the dreadful injuries he received.

Somewhat bizarrely, PGA Tour officials originally stated that they would not make PIP results public, but the 10 players who profited have been revealed in a memo to PGA Tour members.

Phil Mickelson’s misery continues. In December, he claimed that he had won but he finished second to Woods (for the umpteenth time) and received $6m.

The 51-year-old became the oldest major winner with victory at the US PGA last year but things have gone pear-shaped for him since then.

Tiger Woods

(Image Credit: Kevin Diss Photography)

Rory McIlroy, Jordan Spieth, Bryson DeChambeau and Dustin Johnson all received $3.5m from the programme, which is based on metrics measuring a player's ability to generate interest.

Auditors Grant Thornton verified the results following analysis of internet searches, articles, social media, sponsor exposure and awareness among the US population.

Woods was seriously injured in a car crash in February 2021 and was not seen publicly for much of the year. In late November a social media post of him hitting golf balls under the title "making progress" attracted 7.8m views on Twitter.

A month later, the 15-time major champion partnered his son, Charlie, in the PNC Championship. They finished second after making 11 consecutive birdies in the final round.

The other PIP beneficiaries were major winners  Brooks Koepka, Jon Rahm and Bubba Watson. Each player received $3m. Koepka and DeChambeau were, of course, involved in a personal spat that attracted a huge amount of interest on social media.

This year, the PIP bonus pool will increase to $50m as the PGA Tour continues to throw money at its members in an attempt to prevent them from defecting to the proposed Saudi Golf Super League.

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Tags: tiger woods PGA Tour FedEx Cup

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