Despite not playing in a PGA Tour event in the calendar year of 2021, Tiger Woods (hilariously) was announced as the winner of the Tour's inaugural Player Impact Program bonus on Wednesday morning. Aside from the PNC Championship back in December -- where Tiger played alongside his son, Charlie -- the 15-time major champion hasn't played competitively since the 2020 Masters due to serious injuries sustained in a car accident.
Woods takes home a hefty $8 million prize for winning the PIP, which is "a program designed to reward the players who have the biggest positive impact on our business," according to Andy Pazder, the PGA Tour's Chief Tournaments and Competitions Officer. Basically, the PIP is a $40 million fund (increased to $50 million in 2022) for the top-10 players that draw attention to the game based on five metrics: Google search popularity, Meltwater mentions, MVP Index, Nielsen Score, and Q-Score. Still kind of confused? I'm right there with ya.
The PIP Mix-up
Funny enough, Phil Mickelson actually took to Twitter back in December, claiming that he had won the PGA Tour's inaugural PIP bonus. However, 'Lefty' wound up finishing in second place behind Woods, according to the final metrics. It's yet another massive L for Mickelson, who continues to be in the news for all the wrong reasons.
After winning the PIP on Wednesday morning, Tiger Woods took FULL advantage of the awkward moment. He quote-tweeted Mickelson's December 29th victory post for a quick jab. Vintage Tiger.
Of course, Mickelson still walks away with a cool $6 million for earning second place. But this moment serves as yet another reminder of who the true G.O.A.T. is in ALL facets of the game. BIG CAT!
Rory McIlroy, Jordan Spieth, Bryson DeChambeau, and Justin Thomas each earned $3.5 million from the PIP bonus. Dustin Johnson, Brooks Koepka, Jon Rahm, and Bubba Watson earned $3 million.