Tiger Woods has had one of the most fascinating careers of any sports icon in history, and we are going to get a closer look at the life of the 15-time major champion later this year.
HBO Sports announced on Thursday that it has partnered with Jigsaw Productions for a two-part documentary series detailing “the rise, fall, and epic comeback” of Woods. The first part is scheduled to air on Dec. 13.
According to the press release, the documentary will include never-before-seen footage and interviews with Tiger’s former caddie Steve Williams, golf legend Nick Faldo and others. Rachel Uchitel, who was at the center of Woods’ sex scandal was also interviewed as was “Tiger’s first true love” Dina Parr.
“Few global icons are more visible and less understood than Tiger Woods,” HBO Sports executive vice president Peter Nelson said. “His prodigy came with painstaking sacrifice; his perfected athleticism immobilized him in agony before the age of 40; his self-made fame enabled a self-destructive world of secrecy; and his redemptive reemergence posed as many questions as it answered — not only about one of the greatest sportsmen ever to live, but also the greater American society that engulfed him more than a decade ago.”
Despite the highly publicized scandal, Tiger has remained one of the most private people in sports. Woods also had a DUI arrest a few years back, so it will be interesting to see how the documentary covers that. If done properly, a documentary on Tiger has the potential to be must-see TV.
- Tiger Woods
You could come up with a long list of reasons for why “The Match” was such a massive success on Sunday, and a lot of that has to do with all that is going on in the world. Still, having Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson grab a celebrity partner and square off against one another is something that would always draw a big audience, which is why it could become an annual event.
With an average of 5.8 million viewers, Sunday’s match that pitted Woods and Peyton Manning against Mickelson and Tom Brady was the most-watched golf telecast in cable TV history. It also raised $20 million for COVID-19 relief. Plans are now in the works to do something similar every year, and Mickelson told Arash Markazi of the Los Angeles Times that he already has some thoughts on who could partake in the future.
“I think you could showcase guys like Steph Curry and Michael Jordan or Tony Romo and Patrick Mahomes, who are all good golfers, elite talents and have great personalities,” Mickelson said. “Those personalities are going to come out with this event. Or you could have someone who loves the game and is competitive but is really entertaining like Larry David and Bill Murray. I think that could shine.”
Woods and Mickelson originally agreed to three separate events, according to Markazi. The first was in 2018, when they went head-to-head without partners. Bryan Zuriff, a film and TV producer who thought of the first event, said one of the issues with it was that Tiger and Phil are both pro golfers and stopped talking much down the stretch when their competitive natures took over. Having other athletes or celebrities join them helps with that, though Mickelson isn’t sure anyone will be better in that department than Brady and Manning.
“They were humanized with their golf game yet they were competitive and they were funny and entertaining. They let their sense of humor come out,” Mickelson said. “It’s about finding the right mix of those competitors and I don’t think we could get two better guys than who we had in Peyton and Tom. Going forward that will be the challenge. How do we improve on that?”
While future installments of “The Match” may not draw as many viewers, they would undoubtedly be a success. There are plenty of ways to liven up the broadcast no matter who is playing, and we saw several great examples of that on Sunday. Hopefully Tiger and Phil keep it going.
Whatever you think of the entertainment value of “The Match,” it’s pretty clear that it was a huge ratings winner for TNT.
Sunday’s charity golf match pitted Tiger Woods and Peyton Manning against Phil Mickelson and Tom Brady. It attracted 5.8 million viewers, and according to TNT, that’s a new cable record for a golf telecast.
Huge TV numbers for “The Match:” Champions for Charity:
* 5.8 million viewers; most-watched golf event in cable TV history, TNT says.
* Peak of 6.3 million viewers (5:45-6p ET).
— John Ourand (@Ourand_SBJ) May 25, 2020
Pairing two of the most well-known golfers in the world with two of the most iconic quarterbacks of their generation and having them play golf is a big ratings win when the rest of the sports world is shut down. It got plenty of people talking and was entertaining in its own way, particularly the banter between the competitors.
Perhaps people wanted to see Tom Brady look human, which he did for much of the first half of the round. Ultimately, he got the last laugh, even if he and Mickelson lost by a stroke.
Tiger Woods is famous for wearing red on Sundays, and he did so during Sunday’s “The Match” charity game. His partner, Peyton Manning, did not.
Manning, it turns out, had a good reason to avoid the black and red look. He said during an interview that he was asked if he wanted to match with Woods, but declined for a simple reason: he couldn’t be seen wearing Georgia colors.
Peyton Manning on refusing to wear red and black to match Tiger Woods at #TheMatch: "I'm not gonna let Kirby Smart get a picture of me in red and black for their social media accounts."
— David Ubben (@davidubben) May 24, 2020
Manning, of course, is one of the most famous alumni of Tennessee, an SEC rival. No chance is he going to be caught on national television in Georgia’s black and red.
The former Colts and Broncos quarterback has delivered some of the more memorable lines of the match. This is just another.
The highly-anticipated charity match pitting Tiger Woods and Peyton Manning against Phil Mickelson and Tom Brady was all set to go Sunday, but the Florida weather wasn’t cooperating.
“The Match” was set to tee off at 3 p.m., but heavy rain at the Medalist Golf Club meant the match had to be delayed. It was not a light rain either, and there was no chance of playing through the significant downpour.
— Tiger Tracker (@GCTigerTracker) May 24, 2020
I really respect how hard these commentators are trying to make it sound like the weather is no big thing. “Just adding more intrigue!” …like water hazards on the green? pic.twitter.com/7tiZtsOwKz
— Jeff Darlington (@JeffDarlington) May 24, 2020
Mickelson finally teed off at 3:49 after a lengthy delay. However, the threat of rain is expected to continue throughout the afternoon. If the weather were to force a postponement, the foursome will try to play again on Monday.
"If the match is suspended due to adverse weather on Sunday and cannot resume that day, it will be resumed on Monday [May 25] at a time to be announced," per earlier Turner Sports/PGA Tour release. https://t.co/tR2gDnG4zs
— Ryan Hannable (@RyanHannable) May 24, 2020
The problem is that the forecast isn’t much better Monday. According to weather.com, the chance of rain on the Florida coast Monday is 100 percent, with locally heavy downpours.
Even though we don’t quite know when things will be able to get started, it hasn’t stopped the friendly banter between Brady and Manning.
According to Darren Rovell of Action Network, Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson will play a 2 v. 2 charity golf match with Peyton Manning and Tom Brady in May.
TNT will air the match live, with rumored dates being May 15 or May 24. Woods and Manning are believed to be one pair, as both are Nike athletes, while Mickelson and Brady make up the other pairing.
No course has been finalized, but Medalist Golf Club in Hobe Sound, Fla. has been named as one possibility. Nationally televised sporting matches are considered “essential” in the state of Florida, which could clear the way for the match to go ahead there.
PGA Tour officials would not confirm the event, but noted that Woods and Mickelson will have to sign release forms to play in such an event.
Woods and Mickelson played one-on-one in 2018, so this will essentially be a sequel of sorts.
This was widely rumored, and while this isn’t official confirmation, it’s a pretty good indication that this will be happening. With sports shut down for the foreseeable future, it promises to be perhaps the biggest live event in the month of May.
Sunday would have been the final day of the Masters, and Tiger Woods thinks he would have had a chance to be in the hunt had it been played as scheduled.
Woods relived his 2019 triumph with CBS’s Jim Nantz during a replay of the final round. Woods said he would have been ready to play the Masters as scheduled, and that his body was in “normal pre-major” mode based on the time of year.
“I was out practicing and subconsciously getting ready; I didn’t realize I was getting ready,” Woods said, via Bob Harig of ESPN. “I just wanted to go out there, have some fun, hit some balls and get out of the house. But it’s amazing. I’ve been doing it for so long that things were starting to come together; I was starting to peak. We try to peak four times a year; and I know that the tournament’s been postponed, not until November — but for some reason, I was still peaking anyway.”
Woods will instead have to wait until November, which definitely doesn’t fit with his normal major schedule. It will be interesting to see how his internal clock handles the delay.