There's no secret in the golf world who reigns supreme and who everyone else is. It doesn't matter about Escalades or females or divorce, Tiger Woods is still the man, mainly because we all still believe he's the man.
Sure, he hasn't won on tour this year, and unless he does something spectacular this weekend, will card his first winless season ever. That doesn't matter at all. What matters is the importance of a Tiger storyline. Any storyline.
Since the FedEx Cup kicked off in 2007, it seemed the event was made for Tiger Woods. He was the best golfer in the game by a mile, and another reason to make him play late in the season (the incentive? $10 million) was good for golf because it meant Tiger was going to be around and fans were still going to give their Sunday afternoons up for some live coverage.
What they didn't expect was four years later, Tiger would be making the FedEx Cup sing, but for a reason nobody would have thought possible in '07; because he might fall victim to it.
See, we love our golf themes, and "Tiger struggling" is just as important as "Tiger dominating." We love to see Tiger win majors because, like Drew Magary said on Deadspin this week, "I'm one of those horrible people who believes, deep down, that any major not won by Tiger Woods is a major wasted." Sure, that is one person's opinion, but it's true. More people than not think when Tiger isn't in a tournament it is as exciting as watching a bass-fishing tournament live.
This year, with this playoff system, the FedEx Cup plays, and that is entirely because of Tiger. No man can make something buzz like Mr. Woods, and his struggles make this interesting. It's like when the Cowboys or Yankees are in danger of missing the playoffs. Sure, the Jaguars or Twins might be cruising into the playoffs, but nobody cares about that. They care about the mighty sports franchises falling flat on their respective faces. It's our culture to praise negative news over positive news, and this year's Race to the Cup is that perfectly exemplified.
After Tiger's opening two rounds of 73-72, it seems there is hardly a chance that he will finish in the top five and make it to the Tour Championship. But say Woods goes out on Saturday and posts a 66. He jumps a few spots and is battling to make it to the final week of the season. That's excitement, and that's what the FedEx Cup has been hoping for since its inception.
It's just interesting that what has finally gotten this thing off its feet is a guy struggling, not a guy dominating.