A couple of good lines:
Vijay Singh began the 2007 season in January by saying he was already tired of hearing about the points system, which is designed to mimic the format used by Nascar’s Nextel Cup series. Rich Beem said he hoped the FedEx Cup never replaced golf’s major championships as the focus of children’s dreams.
Even in a selfless moment three weeks ago at the Bridgestone Invitational, when K. J. Choi said he would donate the $10 million first-place prize to charity if he won the FedEx Cup, Tiger Woods had to remind him that the money was actually an annuity
The annuity payoff is going to come as a surprise to a lot of golf fans, just as it was to Choi. You see, the vaunted $10 million payout is as bogus as a $10 million lottery payout where you get $50,000 a year for twenty years. That takes a lot of the excitement out of it. When I first heard of the $10 million prize, I pictured the winner collecting an actual live pile of cash—or at least one of those big cardboard checks with eight figures on it.
No joy there. And fans aren’t the only ones to realize it. From the Tmes article:
Before Woods’s decision to skip the opening event, the biggest newsmaker was the amount of the first prize and the form in which it will be awarded. The Tour’s policy board, which includes four players, approved the winnings to be paid in an annuity, but the Tour membership has not embraced the idea.
“I may be dead by the time my retirement fund comes around for me to be able to utilize it,” Woods said.
Phil Mickelson seemed similarly disappointed.
“For the last year, I felt it would be really cool if we had this big check or we had cash to pay the winner,” he said. “Instead, guys won’t see it for 20-plus years, so it takes some of the luster out of it. I think it would make it more exciting if we did something like Vegas used to, when they came out with silver dollars, or like the World Series of Poker with piles of cash. I think that would be cool, but it’s just me.”
No, Phil. It’s not just you.