August 25, 2009
Welcome to Teeing Off, where Yahoo! Sports golf editor Michael Arkush and Devil Ball Golf editor Jay Busbee take one topic and spray it all over the course. Today's topic: Do we even need playoffs in golf? Read our take, then have your say below!
Arkush: Unfortunately, no. I have not been a fan of the playoff system from the beginning and it's for one simple reason: Golf did not need one. To me and, I'm sure, many traditionalists, what truly matters in this wonderful game are the major championships and those are over for 2009. Even though we did not get the winners we were hoping for, each major, in its own way, provided great drama and intrigue up to the very last putt. The playoffs have been hyped over and over since January, and frankly, I'm sick of it. In the years ahead, nobody will remember who won the FedEx Cup. What I'm looking forward to is the NFL, college football, and the Major League Baseball playoffs.
Busbee: But -- but it's playoffs, man! We're American, we're supposed to get excited over them! I love the idea of playoffs, and I love the overall idea of gradually shrinking fields. But beyond that, the playoffs go off the rails. This is obviously a marketing contrivance, a money-based promotion, and golf fans are savvy enough to know when they're getting force-fed commercialism masking as competition. The idea is sound, but the execution needs less branding.
Arkush: Less branding would surely be a start, but I miss the old days when the World Series of Golf at Firestone capped the season. These days, there seems to be no interruption in the schedule, except for maybe a week or two in December. The golf season is way too long. Of course, I'll tune in for the next month or so and hope for a Woods vs. Mickelson battle like we got two years ago in Boston. But, in general, what I'm truly excited about is Tom Brady vs. Peyton Manning.
Busbee: Brady? Manning? Pfah. It's all about Matt Ryan! But since this isn't Shutdown Corner, let's stick to golf. The season does seem to go on and on, doesn't it? The solution with the playoffs is simple: figure a system that works, test that system for every possible leak and shortcoming, and then let the system breathe for a few years. Worst case scenario, we get another opportunity to see the world's best in action. Best case, we have a new tradition in golf ... one that we'll all accept around 2030.
Your turn. What's your take on the FedEx Cup? Have your say below!