Sizing up the TV coverage from the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational ... and away we go.
Those of you watching the final round of the WGC-Bridgeston Invitational witnessed televised golf history on Sunday, and you can thank CBS's David Feherty for making it possible. Following an interview with winner Adam Scott, Feherty was able to snag caddie Steve Williams for a couple of minutes.
What transpired in the interview was something that certainly had CBS execs doing cartwheels, as Williams blasted former boss Tiger Woods, calling his win with Scott as the best of his career.
The post-round interview was a rare one-off. To my knowledge, that's the first time the caddie has ever been interviewed following the end of a tournament, and to top it off, Williams gave CBS exactly what they were looking for, which was bulletin board material that will be talked about at water coolers around the country.
Rarely does the caddie become the story at a tournament, but for at least one week Williams, not Scott, was the story as CBS went off the air.
"Obviously there was a serious underlying message in that," Nick Faldo said. "That was something incredible. Stevie Williams ... wow."
Leaving Nick Faldo nearly speechless is a difficult thing to do. And if CBS's rare interview left one of their own with their mouth agape, I'd say there were plenty of viewers around the country with the very same reaction.
It was a great risk-reward move by CBS that certainly paid off.
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Tiger's refreshing interview with Peter Kostis
It's safe to say a T-37 finish wasn't what Tiger Woods was expecting when he made his long-awaited return to the game after a three-month layoff. So when he finished up an eve-par round of 70 on Sunday, nobody, not even CBS, expected Woods to speak with Peter Kostis.
Woods' MO is to usually skip the flash interview area and head for his car, but he pulled a 360 and decided to speak with Kostis. If that wasn't shocking enough, he also was surprisingly open and honest in the interview.
"I got off to a great start and then absolutely lost it," Woods said after his round. "It hit a couple balls left, a couple balls right, and completely lost it there before getting it back at the end."
He also touched on reverting back to his "old patterns" during the round.
"It's one of those things where I'm still trying to get a feel for it, but I keep falling back into my old patterns with my grip and swing plane. I was fighiting it there for a little bit, but I was able piece it back together."
Woods was also honest about his chances of getting his game ready in time for the PGA Championship.
"Obviously, I don't have a whole lot of time; I have three days. I need to do the reps on the range and start seeing it and really trust the fact that the ball doesn't curve as much as I used to, and that's hard."
Kostis and Woods haven't been the best of friends over the years, so it was nice to see Woods smile, laugh, and give some honest comments on the state of his game, rather than the usual one or two word responses.
Tim Finchem's State of the PGA Tour address
Most commissioners wait until the end of the season to give an address on the current state of a particular sport, but PGA Tour commish Tim Finchem decided to give his on Sunday afternoon at the WGC-Bridgestone.
He hit on the usual topics -- young players, Tiger Woods, and the FedEx Cup -- but one of the more interesting remarks he made was on the state of the tour's sponsorships.
"Our sponsorships are going great. Everybody renewed and we're 100 percent sponsored, as you can see. Globally, it's really taken off with the Olympics, so our international TV and play are at an all-time high, and you can see that today. So we're really, really bullish about the next 5 to 10 years."
With the tour going into contract negotiations with the networks later this year, it shouldn't come as a surprise to see Finchem trying to build up the success of the tour at a critical point in the season.
Expectations for Adam Scott
At 31, Adam Scott is no longer one of the young guns on the PGA Tour; he's rounding into what could be the prime of his career and after a stellar performance at Firestone, he's back on the radar as a golfer to watch going into the PGA Championship.
CBS's crew was certainly impressed with his play, despite years of not living up to his potential as a golf superstar. "We've expected so much of him over the years. He's won seven times on tour, so it's not like he's not been without wins," said Ian Baker-Finch. "But he's yet to live up to his potential. Now at 31, he's in great shape."
Despite having a flawless swing, Peter Kostis said one of the reasons Scott had struggled early in his career was because his short game was so poor.
"We've expected so much from him because of his golf swing," Peter Kostis said. "His short game and putting have never been there, but now it looks like he's found the solution to those things, so now this could be a huge breakthrough for him. We always think great swing means great player, but it doesn't mean a thing if your short game is lagging."
Adam Scott and new (permanent) caddie Steve Williams put on quite a show at Firestone, blitzing the field by four shots and looking mighty comfortable in the process. It almost looked at times like Williams and Scott had been partners for years.
The comfort level was certainly there, as David Feherty noted while Scott and Williams were standing in the middle of the fairway on the 17th hole.
"Well certainly it's different from the last couple of years," David Feherty said. "He looks comfortable with Adam Scott, and that's something we havent' seen from him recently."
"He's the ideal wingman," Ian Baker-Finch noted.
After Williams' comments following Sunday's final round, some may beg to differ.
Rain forced tournament officials to move up the third round of the tournament, meaning Saturday's round was another tape delay nightmare, that was capped off with CBS not informing viewers that they were watching golf coverage from earlier in the day.
As I've said before, I have no problem with the tour moving up tee times to get the round in, but if you've going to make this decision, at least let your viewers know what's going on.
The broadcast started and there wasn't a peep from Jim Nantz or Nick Faldo regarding the current situation. Viewers aren't stupid; just let them know what the deal is so they're not throughly confused.