After Barely Playing, Tiger Woods Wins $8M Golf Prize

He's the first winner of the Player Impact Program
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 3, 2022 10:45 AM CST
After Barely Playing, Tiger Woods Wins $8M Golf Prize
Tiger Woods walks off the course following the trophy ceremony on the 18th green after the Genesis Invitational golf tournament at the Riviera Country Club on Feb. 20, 2022, in the Pacific Palisades area of Los Angeles.   (AP Photo/Ryan Kang)

Last year wasn't exactly a banner year for Tiger Woods' golfing career—he spent much of 2021 learning to walk again after a February rollover crash mangled his right leg so badly that doctors considered amputation. His only tournament of the year was the PNC Championship exhibition father/son challenge in December, but he has still won $8 million for generating more media interest than any other golfer, the BBC reports. Woods is the first person to take top prize in the PGA Tour's new Player Impact Program, which rewards the 10 players who've generated the most positive interest in golf.

Phil Mickelson took second prize, winning $6 million of the $40 million bonus pool, while Rory McIlroy, Jordan Spieth, and Bryson DeChambeau were awarded $3.5 million each. A full list of winners can be seen here. Phil Mickelson declared himself winner of the PIP in December, and Woods made sure to remind him of it, reports. Woods shared the Dec. 29 tweet in which Mickelson thanked supporters for helping him take first place. "Whoops," Woods added.

The PIP was based on five metrics, per the AP: online searches; news articles that include the player's name; awareness; TV sponsor exposure; and social media engagement. Woods took top place in the first three, though he was eighth on social media engagement and 43rd in TV sponsor exposure. Woods' most recent PGA Tour event was the masters in November 2020, and it's not clear when his next one will be. He took second place in the PNC Championship event, where he competed with his son, Charlie. (In November, he said the "unfortunate reality" is that he will likely play a few events a year but not return to golfing full time.)

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