Tiger, Phil, Rory, and Rickie among those bringing golf back

Tiger Woods watches Phil Mickelson tee off during "The Match"
Photo of Ricky Dimon

Ricky Dimon

Golf · 2 years ago

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Since graduating from Davidson (The College That Stephen Curry Built), I have been writing about sports--just about any and all you can think of!--and coaching tennis in Atlanta, Ga. Beyond the four major sports, I am an avid tennis fan and cover the ATP Tour on a daily basis. If I'm not busy writing, you can generally find me on a tennis court or traveling the world wherever a sporting event takes me.

If NASCAR is leading the sports charge back from a coronavirus-related hiatus, golf is not far behind. The PGA Tour is expected to resume in earnest on June 11 with the Charles Schwab Challenge at Colonial Country Club in Fort Worth, Tex.

As for the month of May, that is when a pair of exhibitions will unofficially usher in golf’s comeback.

It begins on Sunday, May 17 with a two-on-two showdown featuring Rory McIlroy and Dustin Johnson vs. Rickie Fowler and Matthew Wolff. The “TaylorMade Driving Relief” battle will take place as a skins format at Seminole Golf Club in Juno Beach, Fla. It is scheduled to be aired live from 2-6 p.m. EST on Golf Channel, NBC, NBCSN, and Sky Sports in addition to being streamed for free on PGA Tour Live, GolfPass, and GolfChannel.com.

“It’s been difficult to witness what so many are enduring over the last several weeks due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” McIlory stated. “I hope that we can provide some respite and entertainment for those tuning in across the globe. Dustin and I will have a lot of fun together and our games will fit well as we push to raise funds and awareness.”

McIlroy and Johnson are -200 favorites to win the match; team Fowler/Wolff is +170. McIlroy and Johnson are -150 to win the opening skin, while Fowler and Wolff are +120 to get on the scoreboard first.

Even more eyes will be on a cross-sport golf contest that includes some of the biggest names on the planet: Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Tom Brady, and Peyton Manning. Woods and Manning will go up against Mickelson and Brady at a time and location still not exactly determined. It will likely occur somewhere in Florida during Memorial Day weekend. “The Match: Champions for Charity” will be televised on TNT and raise money for charity.

To say there is a boatload of betting opportunities on the upcoming showdown would be a gross understatement. Woods and Manning are -200 favorites to win the match, with Mickelson and Brady coming in as +160 underdogs. And then there are smorgasbord of props:

Mickelson is -140 to wear a visor and +100 to wear a baseball style cap.

Woods is -600 to wear a red shit; any other color is +350.

The Over/Under for shots on which Woods twirls his club is 2.5 (Over is -150; Under is +110).

Brady is -400 to have a TB12 logo on the front of his shirt; a Tampa Bay Buccaneers logo is +250.

Brady is -120 to hit the fairway on hole one; not hitting the fairway is also -120

Manning is -150 to hit the fairway on hole one; not hitting the fairway is +110.

Manning is a -130 favorite to have a football highlight shown first during the broadcast; Brady is -110.

The Over/Under on curse words uttered by Woods and Mickelson is 5.5 (Under is -180; Over is +140).

Any player saying the name “Gronk” at any point is -205; no mention is +155.

Any player saying the word “Omaha” at any point is +225; no mention is -350.

Any player spiking a golf ball at any point is +170; no spike is -245.

A playoff being needed to decide the winning team is +250 (no playoff is -300).

Hole No. 18 needing to be played is -130 (No. 18 not being necessary is -110).

Woods is a -130 favorite to make more birdies than Mickelson (Mickelson is -110).

A hole in one by any of the four competitors is +950 (no hole in one is -3500).

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