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How big was Tiger's influence on prize money?


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#1 manku

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Posted 16 April 2018 - 10:19 AM

We constantly read, and hear, about Tiger Woods impact on the prize money that tour pros now earn after he started playing...and certainly the numbers are eye popping.  

However, the other day I was looking at other pro sports and many aren't much different.

Tennis, for example, which has hardly seen an explosion in popularity (shrinkage perhaps?) over the past 20 years, but the US open prize money for winner has gone from 600K to 1.9mm.  US Open Golf has gone from 425K to 2.1mm.  

Other sports have seen dramatic increases as well...heck, the Dodgers sold for 340mm in 2004 and 10 years later for 2 billion...and that didn't include the parking lots!  

It just seems to me that while TW certainly helped, the numbers might have gotten there anyway?

PS.  I'm not trashing TW (loved watching him play in his prime), but just curious.


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#2 vaca22

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Posted 16 April 2018 - 10:29 AM

Some light reading:

http://www.businessi...ze-money-2015-7

Basically, the jump can/could be attributable to national television revenue as a lot of money was being dumped into all sports.

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#3 Ferguson

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Posted 16 April 2018 - 10:29 AM

View Postmanku, on 16 April 2018 - 10:19 AM, said:

We constantly read, and hear, about Tiger Woods impact on the prize money that tour pros now earn after he started playing...and certainly the numbers are eye popping.  

However, the other day I was looking at other pro sports and many aren't much different.

Tennis, for example, which has hardly seen an explosion in popularity (shrinkage perhaps?) over the past 20 years, but the US open prize money for winner has gone from 600K to 1.9mm.  US Open Golf has gone from 425K to 2.1mm.  

Other sports have seen dramatic increases as well...heck, the Dodgers sold for 340mm in 2004 and 10 years later for 2 billion...and that didn't include the parking lots!  

It just seems to me that while TW certainly helped, the numbers might have gotten there anyway?

PS.  I'm not trashing TW (loved watching him play in his prime), but just curious.


It would have increased but not at the same rate.
Tiger made the growth chart a hockey stick.

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#4 tiderider

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Posted 16 April 2018 - 10:35 AM

would bet a serious statistical analysis would show the gain was at least 70 % tiger ... and that the biggest gain was his 2nd run between 2004-2008 ...

but there's a decent chance i'm wrong ...

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#5 nealkb

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Posted 16 April 2018 - 10:38 AM

Very Interestingly, i was playing around with an inflation calculator. One Million in 1993, is equivalent to 1.75 Mil now. While i agree tiger def brought more money and made the advertising sexier, i think inflation also had a good deal to do with it. The Tour championship in 95, prize money was 540k. Would be equivalent to 900k today.


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#6 manku

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Posted 16 April 2018 - 10:51 AM

View Postnealkb, on 16 April 2018 - 10:38 AM, said:

Very Interestingly, i was playing around with an inflation calculator. One Million in 1993, is equivalent to 1.75 Mil now. While i agree tiger def brought more money and made the advertising sexier, i think inflation also had a good deal to do with it. The Tour championship in 95, prize money was 540k. Would be equivalent to 900k today.


https://data.bls.gov...-bin/cpicalc.pl

Certainly inflation has something to do with it...I was watching the Borg/McEnroe movie the other day and was curious to see the prize money...a mere 20000 pounds!  2017 was 2.2 million pounds, or 110x greater, or 11000%...which is a lot more than inflation!  FWIW, Nicklaus made $55,000 in 1980 when he won the US Open.

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#7 JaNelson38

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Posted 16 April 2018 - 10:57 AM

The problem with golf prize purses isnt the majors.  its the prize purses of the garden variety tournaments.  Every full-point tournament on the PGA Tour awards $1 million+ to the winner.  Its just too much.  Its the biggest reason why corporate sponsorship is beginning to fall off...there aren't exactly a ton of corporate entities out there willing to shell out $10+ million to sponsor a golf tournament.

Purses need to contract in the coming years on tour in order to keep the current schedule viable.

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#8 MidMOGolfer

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Posted 16 April 2018 - 08:58 PM

View PostJaNelson38, on 16 April 2018 - 10:57 AM, said:

The problem with golf prize purses isnt the majors.  its the prize purses of the garden variety tournaments.  Every full-point tournament on the PGA Tour awards $1 million+ to the winner.  Its just too much.  Its the biggest reason why corporate sponsorship is beginning to fall off...there aren't exactly a ton of corporate entities out there willing to shell out $10+ million to sponsor a golf tournament.

Purses need to contract in the coming years on tour in order to keep the current schedule viable.

What do you think will happen first, purses contract or the tour shortens its schedule?  I would prefer to see a shorter schedule.
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#9 Hawkeye77

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Posted 16 April 2018 - 09:00 PM

Big.

Other sports not driving golf.

Edited by Hawkeye77, 16 April 2018 - 09:02 PM.


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#10 rangersgoalie

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Posted 16 April 2018 - 09:14 PM

I wonder if any player playing when Tiger started believes Tiger did NOT increase purses!


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#11 cdnglf

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Posted 16 April 2018 - 09:47 PM

Less than is commonly believed.

As you point out, the money in nearly every sport increased at a rate similar over the past 20-30 years.

I remember in the early 90s when a few guys in MLB broke the $6M/year barrier. Today, Kershaw makes almost $36M. And Harper will probably pass $40M next year.
NHL expansion fees were $50M in the mid-90s. The Vegas Golden Knights paid $500M to join the league this year.

And of course, all the numbers thrown out are never inflation-adjusted (including the ones above).

Edited by cdnglf, 16 April 2018 - 09:50 PM.


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#12 lawst4days

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Posted 16 April 2018 - 10:49 PM

Equal parts Tiger and television marketing.

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#13 deasy55

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Posted 17 April 2018 - 03:13 AM

If you look across all sports, there was a massive internet/tv revenue explosion in the early 2000s and prize money grew exponentially across the board. Some people seem to attribute all that to Tiger, which is silly.



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#14 lowheel

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Posted 17 April 2018 - 03:24 AM

View PostFerguson, on 16 April 2018 - 10:29 AM, said:

View Postmanku, on 16 April 2018 - 10:19 AM, said:

We constantly read, and hear, about Tiger Woods impact on the prize money that tour pros now earn after he started playing...and certainly the numbers are eye popping.  

However, the other day I was looking at other pro sports and many aren't much different.

Tennis, for example, which has hardly seen an explosion in popularity (shrinkage perhaps?) over the past 20 years, but the US open prize money for winner has gone from 600K to 1.9mm.  US Open Golf has gone from 425K to 2.1mm.  

Other sports have seen dramatic increases as well...heck, the Dodgers sold for 340mm in 2004 and 10 years later for 2 billion...and that didn't include the parking lots!  

It just seems to me that while TW certainly helped, the numbers might have gotten there anyway?

PS.  I'm not trashing TW (loved watching him play in his prime), but just curious.


It would have increased but not at the same rate.
Tiger made the growth chart a hockey stick.
Nope. It has been debunked several times. That’s not a slight on tiger just reality. Golf like all other major sports grew because of tv deals. He helped golfers off course earnings though substantially. Endorsements really picked up steam for a huge segment of players.

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#15 Petunia Sprinkle

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Posted 17 April 2018 - 03:31 AM

Wasnít there an increase of interest in golf, in general, throughout all of the 90s?


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#16 elwhippy

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Posted 17 April 2018 - 04:02 AM

Ask guys who have only won 2 or 3 times on tour and live in $10m mansions.

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#17 bladehunter

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Posted 17 April 2018 - 05:56 AM

Of course he had little to do with the increase in revenue. I mean no body really even noticed how often he won or how much he won by or how stone cold he could be when he danced on players faces.  

Iíd say you could  attribute just as much growth to guys like Stewart Cink. Or maybe the rise of Cory Pavin .

Good grief .  Where do people get these ideas ?  All you  have to do is look at ticket sales and ratings jumps today for events tiger enters.  This is as dumb as trying to say that Arnold Palmer had no influence on the games growth in revenue.  Face palm emoji

Edited by bladehunter, 17 April 2018 - 05:57 AM.

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#18 bladehunter

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Posted 17 April 2018 - 06:00 AM

View Postlowheel, on 17 April 2018 - 03:24 AM, said:

View PostFerguson, on 16 April 2018 - 10:29 AM, said:

View Postmanku, on 16 April 2018 - 10:19 AM, said:

We constantly read, and hear, about Tiger Woods impact on the prize money that tour pros now earn after he started playing...and certainly the numbers are eye popping.  

However, the other day I was looking at other pro sports and many aren't much different.

Tennis, for example, which has hardly seen an explosion in popularity (shrinkage perhaps?) over the past 20 years, but the US open prize money for winner has gone from 600K to 1.9mm.  US Open Golf has gone from 425K to 2.1mm.  

Other sports have seen dramatic increases as well...heck, the Dodgers sold for 340mm in 2004 and 10 years later for 2 billion...and that didn't include the parking lots!  

It just seems to me that while TW certainly helped, the numbers might have gotten there anyway?

PS.  I'm not trashing TW (loved watching him play in his prime), but just curious.


It would have increased but not at the same rate.
Tiger made the growth chart a hockey stick.
Nope. It has been debunked several times. Thatís not a slight on tiger just reality. Golf like all other major sports grew because of tv deals. He helped golfers off course earnings though substantially. Endorsements really picked up steam for a huge segment of players.

And who drove the tv deals ?  Stadler ?


Loook up the story of Augusta renegotiating the tv deal after or during the 97 masters.   It is mentioned at some point on GC when they chronicled tigers wins at Augusta.  It grew by a mile after that.  

Ratings for events where tiger played vs when he didnít were mentioned to be near 2 to 1 ratio.
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#19 MSUIRONDAWGS

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Posted 17 April 2018 - 06:45 AM

View Postrangersgoalie, on 16 April 2018 - 09:14 PM, said:

I wonder if any player playing when Tiger started believes Tiger did NOT increase purses!

If so, they are mighty naive

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#20 MSUIRONDAWGS

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Posted 17 April 2018 - 06:47 AM

Someone that is smart as Phil admitted it on Feherty, that they all pretty much owe it to Tiger. I think everyone by now knows this.


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#21 Petunia Sprinkle

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Posted 17 April 2018 - 07:06 AM

View PostMSUIRONDAWGS, on 17 April 2018 - 06:47 AM, said:

Someone that is smart as Phil admitted it on Feherty, that they all pretty much owe it to Tiger. I think everyone by now knows this.

Why would that be, though? (Itís not like Tiger was not going to play were the extra money not there.) The only argument that makes sense is that he brought in a larger audience for golf that wouldnít have been there had he not happened, like Gretzky for hockey, Jordan for basketball, Brady for football (couldnít resist), or even Pavarotti for opera.

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#22 Itsjustagame

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Posted 17 April 2018 - 07:07 AM

The stars in every sport drive the salaries/prize money.
Nobody tunes in to watch the bottom 50% of any roster in any sport.
Tiger has probably been the  biggest name in sports globally for 20 years.
There is no formula to use in determining that influence, but it was substantial.
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#23 anth

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Posted 17 April 2018 - 07:22 AM

Tiger invented money.  And TV coverage
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#24 Ferguson

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Posted 17 April 2018 - 07:35 AM

View Postlowheel, on 17 April 2018 - 03:24 AM, said:

View PostFerguson, on 16 April 2018 - 10:29 AM, said:

View Postmanku, on 16 April 2018 - 10:19 AM, said:

We constantly read, and hear, about Tiger Woods impact on the prize money that tour pros now earn after he started playing...and certainly the numbers are eye popping.  

However, the other day I was looking at other pro sports and many aren't much different.

Tennis, for example, which has hardly seen an explosion in popularity (shrinkage perhaps?) over the past 20 years, but the US open prize money for winner has gone from 600K to 1.9mm.  US Open Golf has gone from 425K to 2.1mm.  

Other sports have seen dramatic increases as well...heck, the Dodgers sold for 340mm in 2004 and 10 years later for 2 billion...and that didn't include the parking lots!  

It just seems to me that while TW certainly helped, the numbers might have gotten there anyway?

PS.  I'm not trashing TW (loved watching him play in his prime), but just curious.


It would have increased but not at the same rate.
Tiger made the growth chart a hockey stick.
Nope. It has been debunked several times. That’s not a slight on tiger just reality. Golf like all other major sports grew because of tv deals. He helped golfers off course earnings though substantially. Endorsements really picked up steam for a huge segment of players.


Are you saying the "dramatic" increase in prize money coupled with a flood of people to the game was "coincidental" to Tiger's entry and subsequent rise into golf's greatest ranks?

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#25 MtlJeff

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Posted 17 April 2018 - 07:43 AM

The purses in golf went up by a greater rate than most sports after Tiger started playing. If you look at top salaries, average salaries etc...every sport has gone up and golf would have regardless, but Tiger made it happen faster and at a better growth rate.

I looked at average salaries in sports vs average salary in the US for an article I wrote here a few years back I recall, the subject of which was that it would be harder to dominate golf as it became more capitalized

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#26 nicodywill

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Posted 17 April 2018 - 09:47 AM

1. Television/Internet
2. Tiger Woods

In that order

Golf is different in that it's one of the only sports you can watch the pros play and then go out an play yourself at almost ANY age.
It's very marketable in that way.
Add in that fact that its such a difficult game with a perception of golf being equipment based paired with every company advancing said equipment and the boom begins..

Edited by nicodywill, 17 April 2018 - 09:52 AM.


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#27 bscinstnct

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Posted 17 April 2018 - 10:04 AM

Why Tiger Woods' impact on today's huge PGA Tour cash prizes is not as big as people think it is

Posted Image

In other words, the on-field/court/course earnings for all pro athletes in major sports leagues started to accelerate in the late 90s, not just on the PGA Tour.
And why did they all start to accelerate at about the same time? Simple, national television revenue. More money was being pumped into all sports and a lot of the money was going to the athletes.
This doesn't mean Woods is not a factor at all. If we look at the four years leading up to 1997 and the first four years after Woods' first major, winnings/salaries increase greatly in all four sports but they increased at a faster rate in golf. Both the PGA Tour (2.7X) and MLB (2.5X) had the rate of increase nearly triple over the next four years, as represented by average increase average salaries. Meanwhile, the salary-capped sports, NFL (1.7X) and NBA (1.5X) showed slightly slower rates of increase.

But again, how much of the difference between the PGA Tour and the others can we attribute to Woods? It is a lot easier to add 30% to average winnings of $378,000 on the Tour in 1997 than it is to add 30% to the average NBA salary of $2.2 million in the same year.
Should Spieth thank Woods for his bank account? Certainly, just like every athlete in every major pro sports should thank the stars of yesterday.

http://www.businessi...ze-money-2015-7

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#28 Ferguson

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Posted 17 April 2018 - 11:25 AM

Look 97 to 07.
  • That is what I call the TIGER DELTA.

Then it flattens.
  • Recession and housing bust.


Look at the upward turn in 13.
  • Woods won five of the 16 tournaments he played this season and finished in the top 10 in three others.


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#29 Frankensteins Monster

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Posted 17 April 2018 - 11:55 AM

100% responsible up until 2010. The TV revenue was 100% dictated by the expectations of Tiger coming in and his dominance for years.

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#30 Darth Putter

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Posted 17 April 2018 - 12:00 PM

View PostFrankensteins Monster, on 17 April 2018 - 11:55 AM, said:

100% responsible up until 2010. The TV revenue was 100% dictated by the expectations of Tiger coming in and his dominance for years.

Tiger had Steiny negotiating the tv deals for the PGA Tour?

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