ATLANTA. — PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan believes the return of a fully-fit Tiger Woods has had a “tremendous and significant” impact both on and off the golf course.
Woods will bring the curtain down on a largely successful comeback this week when he tees off in the season-ending Tour Championship at East Lake in suburban Atlanta.
It is the first time that Woods has qualified for the elite 30-strong event since a 22nd place finish in 2013. While Woods has yet to taste a tournament victory this year, Monahan said the former world number one had nevertheless had a huge impact, boosting television ratings and indirectly raising the profile of other players on tour. “To have a fully-fit Tiger Woods back on the PGA Tour has been tremendous and significant,” said Monahan.
Monahan said at the Valspar Championship, where Woods finished runner-up behind Paul Casey, ratings had increased from a figure of 3.2 to 5.1. “That is a lot more people seeing Paul Casey and hearing his story and the other players in the mix,” Monahan said.
“Also, if you are Brooks Koepka and you win back-to-back US Opens and then win the PGA Championship with Tiger in the mix with a TV rating that Sunday in St. Louis of a 5.4 then that is a 75% increase in the ratings. That is more people seeing Brooks, hearing Brooks and learning about Brooks talent.