With apologies to Tim Finchem, for my money, the professional golf season begins this week. The Hyundai Tournament of Champions—with a field of last season’s winners—is the natural starting point for a new year of professional golf.
I don’t know that I will ever wrap my brain around the PGA Tour’s wraparound season. Every sport but golf has an off season in which fans can take a deep breath, analyze the previous campaign, and recharge their batteries for the new. I think that’s necessary for fans to keep up their interest in the game.
The notion of a neverending PGA Tour campaign just wears me out. After the PGA Championship, I generally lose interest in the professional game. And so do most of the pro golf fans I know. The Tour Championship is of passing interest, and after that, I’m ready for a break.
I can see the problem for the PGA TOUR: they don’t have a financial interest in any of the season’s Majors. The Masters is the Masters, the USGA runs the US Open, the R&A has the Open Championship and the PGA of America owns the PGA Championship. That leaves the PGA TOUR trying to extend interest in their brand beyond the Majors.
That’s a tough sell. And I for one am not buying.