Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Ratings Validate Move to May; Losing Tiger for 2008 Hurt, but More TVs Are Tuning in to the Players

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Ratings Validate Move to May; Losing Tiger for 2008 Hurt, but More TVs Are Tuning in to the Players

Article excerpt

Byline: GARRY SMITS

The trend for television ratings in PGA Tour events without Tiger Woods in the field is that they can be as much as 50 percent lower than those with the world's No. 1-ranked player in the field.

In that case, The Players Championship scored a victory with NBC's overnight TV ratings for Sunday's final round.

Sergio Garcia's playoff win over Paul Goydos drew a 3.4 rating and an 8 share, which was only an 8 percent decrease from last year's tournament, when Woods played and Phil Mickelson outdueled Sean O'Hair for the victory.

And the rating for the final round was still 10 percent higher than the final round in 2006 and 31 percent higher than the final round in 2005. Those were the last two Players Championships in March.

"The strong ratings for Sunday's final round indicated that The Players is bigger than any one player, and the move to Mother's Day weekend has been a success," NBC Sports spokesman Brian Walker said.

The rating for Saturday's third round was 2.1, with the share down 28 percent from 2007.

Ty Votaw, the PGA Tour's executive vice president for communications, said the Tour was "very pleased" with the ratings.

"It was a great week, with a great champion and a great runner-up," Votaw said. "We knew, for a lot of reasons, that the move from March to May would provide us with a greater potential for success."

The finish, the first playoff since 1987, was as dramatic as it gets in golf. Goydos hit his tee shot into the water at the par-3 17th hole, the first playoff hole, while Garcia knocked his shot to within 5 feet and made par. Garcia also rallied from three shots behind Goydos with five holes to play with a series of clutch putts, including a 46-footer for birdie at No. 14.

Goydos, who charmed the galleries and media with his wit and humor, supplied his own drama with a pitch-in for birdie at No. 10 and a 40-foot birdie putt at No. 4. However, he bogeyed the 18th hole to lose a one-shot lead and send the tournament to a playoff. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.