Elling On FedEx Cup

Steve Elling weighs in on the FedEx Cup and he's not excited either:

It has been a fortnight since the PGA Tour raised the curtain on its new money misdirection play, a cash-rich contrivance called the FedEx Cup. Or maybe that's pulled back the curtain, because Commissioner Tim Finchem is starting to look like the Wizard of Blahs.

The innovative notion of a seasonlong points race has generated mostly yawns of indifference. Whenever fans pass at examining, if not exhuming, a plan that purports to change the DNA of a decades-old pro sport, that's not a good sign.

Those who bothered to delve into the details, however, have come away picking SPAM out of their teeth. They chewed on it but aren't quite sure what it was. Sure, it's different, but is it any good?



Philosophically, though, it's about the money, stupid -- keeping the big-gun players rich, propping up purses, capitulating to TV and title sponsors while allowing Finchem to fill his increasingly fat wallet.


What's thrilling about seeing the roughly 240 players with tour status being culled to a list of 144? That means less than two-thirds of the tour roster, including players who will be losing their cards at year's end, qualify for the FedEx "playoffs." What is this, hockey?

Finchem says players have been "incentivized" to compete in all four FedEx Cup series events to win the $10 million. Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson will play all four this year, yet do you really think Woods regularly will play six times in seven weeks under the FedEx Cup scenario? Me, neither.


The galling go-for-the-green attitude of the modern tour was never more in evidence than when the plan was unveiled June 28 in New York City, when Finchem shamelessly trotted out corporate shills from the four title sponsors of the FedEx series. Worse, the announcement was held on the first day of the most important event in women's golf, the U.S. Women's Open. That's just bad karma.