Tiger Woods vs. Phil Mickelson: ‘an old-fashioned money grab’
Golfing adversaries will face off in a pay-per-view event in Las Vegas in November
Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson will face off in an exhibition match in Las Vegas in November, with the winner pocketing $9m.
The pay-per-view event will take place on Thanksgiving weekend at Shadow Creek.
Confirmation appeared on Twitter on Wednesday night, when Woods posted a promotional poster for the challenge.
Mickelson, who only joined the social networking site this week, responded by goading Woods. “I bet you think this is the easiest $9m you will ever make,” he wrote.
The two golfers, who have won 19 Majors and more than $200m in prizemoney over the course of their careers, have been rivals for many years.
“The 48-year-old Mickelson and the 42-year-old Woods have long been adversaries who have seen their relationship mellow in recent years. They’ve played practice rounds together this year at the Masters and the WGC-Bridgestone, were grouped together during the first two rounds of the Players Championship, and have worked together behind the scenes as part of the US Ryder Cup and Presidents Cup efforts,” says ESPN.
The Daily Mail calls it a “mouthwatering clash”, but not everyone believes the winner-takes-all showdown is a good idea.
Writing in The Observer on Sunday, Ewan Murray said: “The PGA Tour, which will not sanction the duel as an official event, is thought to be less than enamoured of two of its biggest names going rogue. There is, however, precious little it can do about it.
“Such negative sentiment should actually be more widespread. This is ostentation at its worst. Woods v Mickelson, version 2018, is about as contrived a sporting contest as exists. The fortunes on offer render it borderline offensive.”
And Dan Wetsel of Yahoo says making the event pay-per-view is a terrible idea.
“This feels like a bad sports management thesis come to life. No mention of charity. Nothing about the guys putting up their own cash,” he says. “This is just an old-fashioned money grab.
“Phil and Tiger and everyone else could do it just because it’s a cool idea and whatever money is made could go to the winner’s charity of choice.
“Instead you’re being asked to pay so one of these incredibly rich guys gets a little bit richer.”