Twelve years into his tenure, Finchem's major achievements have been the exponential growth of purses and the creation of the World Golf Championships, but he can claim neither for himself as an unqualified success. Certainly Finchem's hardball TV negotiations helped jack up the purses, but in the end Woods will get most of the credit for this new era of big money. Finchem did preside over the creation of the WGCs, but it wasn't exactly his idea -- just ask Greg Norman! The WGCs are nice little tournaments that have been good additions to the schedule, but if their reason-for-being is to export the Tour product around the world then they have to be judged as spectacular failures. The vast majority of WGCs have been played in the U.S., and the scheduling in the future is only going to get more insular, much to the mystification of the international golf community. (Ernie Els in particular has been a shrill critic.)
So the FedEx Cup becomes all the more important to Finchem, because it is indisputably his baby. He described the FC as "our version of the playoffs. Like most other sports, playoffs are the most dynamic portion of the season, and we want to take advantage of the opportunity to create some playoffs that we think will drive fan interest, television interest, and carry our audience somewhat further into the year."
[Jack] Whitaker covered, and delivered essays about, all manner of sport. He wrote as he dressed, with tweedy charm. He said of his favorite game, “Golf is the most movable feast of all.” That is, it could be played everywhere, from Merion, where he was a member, to the public courses of Philadelphia where he learned the game in the 1940s. MICHAEL BAMBERGER