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The Match: A Tale of Cargo Shorts and Split Pants

Posted on May 26, 2020

By Annalece Anhalt-Slaughter

The Match was back and bigger than ever this year, at a time when we all desperately needed some fresh sports content to tune into! Tiger Woods and Peyton Manning faced off against Phil Mickelson and Tom Brady in the Capital One-sponsored $20M charity match (oh, so that’s where all of our fees are going). The day’s highlights included the Caddyshack joke everyone had to make when rain delayed the start of the match, Peyton’s terrible first shot, fans roasting Tiger over his cargo shorts, Phil expertly explaining how his shot was going to work and executing it to perfection, Charles Barkley roasting Brady for his failed shot, and of course, Tom Brady ripping his pants after the shot of his life:

Ultimately, (spoiler alert!) it was Woods and Manning that pulled out the win, but as cheesy as it sounds, we feel like the fans were the ones who won this time. Before you judge us for even uttering that statement, remember that this was easily one of the most entertaining rounds of golf we’ve witnessed – from the on-course trash-talking to the mix of horrible and amazing swings, this match DELIVERED. Our favorite part though? The direct lines between Charles Barkley, Justin Thomas and the golfers. Getting to listen in felt like when a reality show breaks the fourth wall. We have to ask, is that something the fans would want to have in the FCFL – a direct line to the players? Whether it’s a direct line from the Fan Captains, the commentators, or even the fans themselves, we think the fans would be all over it!

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Tiger Is Back On Top

Posted on April 15, 2019

By Annalece Anhalt-Slaughter

At 43-years old, Tiger Woods just won the 2019 Masters. Just let that sink in for a moment. His win at Augusta over the weekend was his 15th major championship. He could very easily just head on into retirement now with credentials like that, but we imagine he will keep hitting the links, ready to reassert his dominance in the sport after falling off for the last several years. This win marks the first at Augusta since 2005, and his first major title since 2008, before things began to go downhill.

We won’t go too into detail, but a few years ago Woods found himself on the cover of tabloids for weeks on end amid some personal drama. Sponsors began to leave him behind, setting their sights on someone younger, who wasn’t undergoing multiple back surgeries and frankly just not in the middle of a publicity nightmare. Except for Nike. Nike stuck around through thick and thin, and in the end, it paid off for them. Following the big win, they released a commercial depicting the highs and lows of Woods’ career, complete with a clip of him as a child saying that he’s “gonna beat Jack Nicklaus.”  We get the feeling that Nike has had this commercial queued up for quite a few years, but it was definitely worth the wait.

Clearly, Nike saw value in Woods when others didn’t. While others were quick to write him off, they stuck around to give him another chance. As part of your team’s front office, you will be scouting players, watching tape, and formulating your list of must-get players ahead of the draft. Will the fans immediately write off someone a little older or someone with a few surgeries under their belt? We don’t think so. Our fans have seen players succeed in the NFL and MLB into their 40s, so why not give a fair shot to someone with a little more mileage. Now, will the fans shy away from someone with a more “colorful” background? Maybe. They did when we let the fans vote whether or not Greg Hardy should be given a shot on the Salt Lake Screaming Eagles (we all know how that ended). We imagine they might be willing to overlook things from a player’s past if they are 1) an exceptional athlete and 2) changed for the better. At the end of the day, the thing that matters most is how the athlete performs.

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Another $9M for Mickelson

By Annalece Montgomery

Last Saturday, Phil Mickelson tee’d off against Tiger Woods for “The Match” in Las Vegas, NV, and there was plenty of drama. When the two marched up to the 22nd hole, the two were tied after 18 regulation holes and three playoff pars. Mickelson knocked in a 5-foot birdie to secure the prize, beating one of “the greatest of all time,” a description he affectionately used for his opponent.

There were plenty of complaints about the match, most of them downright silly. The most prevalent seemed to be that the amount of money on the line was obscene. We get it, $9 million is a LOT of money for a single round of golf. However, it wasn’t Phil and Tiger forcing the hand of any of the sponsors to put up the money for the winner. And for those complaining that the money “doesn’t mean anything” to the golfers, come on guys, you can’t have it both ways. One thing people couldn’t really complain about? The cost.

Unfortunately for television providers, but pretty great for golf fans, there was a technical glitch that allowed fans to stream the match – that was intended to be Pay Per View – for free. Following reports of the issue, most of the broadcast carriers have agreed to refund those who paid $19.99 to stream the match at Shadow Creek – no word from Cablevision and Verizon just yet.

This was the first head-to-head golf match to hit Pay-Per-View, and anyone would consider the prize truly fantastic for four hours of work. We’re curious to how the fans would react to future televised rounds like this for golf? With the competition being so neck-and-neck throughout the afternoon, we think they would welcome more of these. We think the fans may also appreciate watching more of these head-to-head matches, as opposed to the Masters, which hosts 90-100 golfers. The close competition certainly lends itself to unique opportunities for a captivating storyline, and a chance for fans to “pick their team,” so to speak.