Phil Mickelson, Tiger Woods, San Francisco Chronicle discussed on San Francisco Chronicle Sports - Spoken Edition
You're listening to the spoken edition of the San Francisco Chronicle. Tiger Woods versus Phil Mickelson shows. What money can buy and what it can't one enduring lesson nearly fourteen years covering Gulf, the chronicle not much compares to Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson playing alongside each other. Especially in contention on Sundays their spirited simultaneous charges. Electrified Augusta National in the final round of the two thousand nine masters, even if they both alternately faltered, they're pairing three years later at Pebble Beach where Mickelson uncommonly crushed woods in the final round created similar buzz friendly reminder about Friday's much-hyped pay per view match. This is not the same. Not even close woods and Mickelson will play head to head for nine million dollars winner-take-all, and that alone will prompt a good number of people to forego over nineteen ninety nine they will see a contrived exhibition not memorable competition on a grant stage. This is November in Las Vegas. Not April and Augusta. It just doesn't matter. Sports captivates us. Because the games are meaningful authentic. Well, maybe not in baseball steroid era and unpredictable, but everything about Friday's made for television event seems forced scripted and even a bit slimy. Take several cringe worthy moments during Tuesday's promotional news conference woods and Mickelson who for years had zero use free other tossed out flowery compliments as if they were lifelong best buddies near the end of the session Mickelson said without laughing. It will be a major championship intensity on Friday, then to complete this theater of the absurd. Woods and Mickelson complied with a request for a stoic face to face staredown like two heavyweight boxers. Please Friday's matches about money naturally. A vehicle for people who are crazy rich to become even richer, the two best golfers of their generation are trying to squeeze out more revenue before they fade from public view. Mickelson is forty eight and woods turns forty three next month. They each one a PD tour event this year for the first time since two thousand thirteen making. For compelling stories, especially with woods, given his fall from grace and repeated back surgeries, but it was telling when Justin Thomas the world's fourth-ranked player said there was zero percent chance. He would watch this tiger Phil tussle Rory macelroy echo Thomas last week into by look if they had done it fifteen years ago, it would have been great macelroy told reporters. But nowadays, it's missed the Mark a little bit, fair point woods and Mickelson squaring off in two thousand five six or seven with tiger dominating the PGA tour and Phil finally winning an occasional major might have resonated more. Plus, they really disliked each other back, then that's one fascinating confounding element of this whole thing that unlikely of Lucien of the tiger Phil relationship, the tension traces to their junior golf days in southern California. When Mickelson reportedly looked down on the young, prodigy and woods grew resentful. Sports Illustrated's Alan ship once told of woods in his amateur days. Watching the masters on television as one of Michael's? Typically, aggressive putz scooted farther and farther past the whole would simply said role. They're infamous writer Cup pairing in two thousand four widen the divide but woods clearly softened in recent years. Maybe he really was humbled by his personal travails. And by the injuries that limited him to one official tour start between August two thousand fifteen and January two thousand eighteen Mickelson accelerated the thought and their relationship by sending encouraging text messages while woods recovered from his back surgeries woods responded by doing the same. As Mickelson chased victory at the Mexico championship in March now curiously there, essentially business partners making promotional spots appearing together at news conferences, leaving open the possibility of more matches. If this one proves successful. They're throwing lots of gimmicks at the wall and hoping some stick woods Mickelson and their caddies. We'll we're microphones during Friday's which could reveal lively insightful banter or more scripted stage nonsense. The telecast will carry a strong gambling flavor. Fitting for a Vegas show at glitzy. Shadow creek, golf course odds will be displayed to gosh, the potential success of impending shots and woods and Mickelson are making high stakes side bets with the money going to charity, including two hundred thousand dollars on whether Mickelson birdies the first hole. It's quite the elaborate production pushing golf into a strange new frontier, and it will test the limits of tiger and fills mass-appeal Ron critic is a San Francisco Chronicle staff writer, Email Arkwright, check at chronicle dot com. Twitter at Ron critic.