Friday, April 19, 2013

Golf - The [Next] Tiger Woods Scandal

I knew that some people didn't like Tiger Woods. He cheated on his wife, he slept around with some random women, and he hid it from the world. He's made some really poor personal choices and that has undoubtedly affected his public image. I get it. But last week at the Masters, it was taken to a ridiculous new level. On the 15th hole of the second round of play, Tiger ran into an unfortunate circumstance where a stroke of bad luck landed his golf ball in a water hazard requiring him to drop a new ball to play his next shot. Well, several hours after this all happens we come to find out that a television viewer called in to the tournament officials to alert them that Tiger did not drop the ball exactly as rules specify he should have.

Really? I mean seriously? Someone at home actually took the time to find the phone number for a tournament official, call the official, explain the rule and complain that it wasn't followed, and request that an inquiry be made so that Tiger's tournament status and chances of winning could be questioned. First of all, who does that? Second, who has that kind of time? And third, why do you even care that much? Wouldn't your time be much better spent watching porn and dreaming of all the women Tiger's been with that you could never have (for any kids reading this post, porn is a type of adult documentary that old people like to watch without any type of real story line or car chases ... it's really boring, you wouldn't like it)?

Aside from the fact that the dropped ball was even investigated to begin with, I do have some thoughts on the outcome for those who are golf savvy and enjoy the sport:

- The rules were interpreted, and applied, correctly in this situation. Quit whining and complaining that Tiger wasn't kicked out of the tournament for signing an incorrect scorecard. Per the rules, any infraction that was discovered due to television will result in a 2 stroke penalty instead of disqualification. Like it or not, the only reason the mistake was discovered was because they could review it on TV. Don't hate the application, hate the rule.

- Tiger didn't cheat. You heard me. Yes, he did fail to properly adhere to a poorly written rule governing the dropping of the golf ball and he received the appropriate penalty for doing so. However, had Tiger intentionally broken the rule for the purposes of gaining an advantage, do you really think he would have openly admitted to it during a post-round interview? Unprompted mind you. Not even Tiger would make that kind of mistake.

Unfortunately, controversy or not, Tiger Woods did not win the Masters and we will never know how this "scandal" altered the outcome of the tournament. On the bright side, if/when he goes on to break Jack Nicklaus' record for most career majors, nobody can say that the victories were tainted.

I do have one piece of advice for Tiger though ... next time you're trying to figure out the appropriate place to lay down your balls, make sure you don't get caught putting them where they don't belong ...

- Fishy

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