The difference between Phil and Tiger

Tiger Woods has 15 majors, Phil Mickelson six. At one point in their careers it seemed that both would go on to win a host more but each of them had what looks like a big farewell – Tiger at Augusta in 2019 and Mickelson last year becoming the oldest major winner at nearly 51.

Such is Woods' dominance that nine majors is a huge gulf but the way that they will be remembered looks, at this moment anyway, even further apart. One is going after the money, the other steeped in the history of the game.

"I have my viewpoint how I see the game of golf, and I've supported the PGA Tour and my foundation has run events on the Tour for a number of years. I just think that what Jack and Arnold have done in starting the Tour and breaking away from the PGA of America and creating our tour in '68 or '69, somewhere in there, I just think there's a legacy to that. I still think that the Tour has so much to offer, so much opportunity," Woods said in his pre-tournament press conference at the PGA Championship."

There was even better to come and the PGA Tour commissioner must have been grinning from ear to ear on this bit.

"I understand different viewpoints, but I believe in legacies. I believe in major championships. I believe in big events, comparisons to historical figures of the past. There's plenty of money out here. The Tour is growing. But it's just like any other sport. It's like tennis. You have to go out there and earn it. You've got to go out there and play for it. We have opportunity to go ahead and do it. It's just not guaranteed up front."

As for whether Woods has reached out to Mickelson, the answer was fairly predictable though the belief is that their relationship has softened over the years.

"I have not reached out to him. I have not spoken to him. A lot of it has not to do with personal issues. It was our viewpoints of how the Tour should be run and could be run, and what players are playing for and how we are playing for it. I have a completely different stance on, and so no, I have not."

Woods finished with an interesting point on how social media had played its part in how everything has blown up around Mickelson in the past few months.

"If this would have happened 30 years ago, 20 years ago, it wouldn't have happened as fast. But social media has changed the landscape and how fast things can ramp up, whether it's real news or fake news or whatever it is, opinions get out there instantly. It can sway very quickly one way or the other. What we are seeing right now in society, it's very bipolar. There's really no middle ground, you stand one way or the other. It's very polarising."



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