SBD/June 16, 2014/Leagues and Governing Bodies

Without Tiger, Golf Needs To Rely On Several New Stars, Including Martin Kaymer

Kaymer won the Players Championship and the U.S. Open this year
Following Martin Kaymer's eight-shot win at the U.S. Open yesterday, golf fans are "learning that not one player is going to replace" Tiger Woods when he exits the spotlight, rather it is "going to take a village," according to George Willis of the N.Y. POST, who writes under the header, "Open Champ Has Chance To Help Fill Tiger's Void." With Woods missing the tournament following back surgery earlier this year and Phil Mickelson "struggling with his game at age 44, golf needs more stars." The "more stars the better," though Kaymer is the "only player who leaves Pinehurst looking like a star." He has become the "first player to win the Players Championship and the U.S. Open in the same year," but it is still to be determined if Kaymer "is part of the village" (N.Y. POST, 6/16). Golf Channel's Brandel Chamblee said, "I think we have a mega-star in Martin Kaymer for all the obvious reasons." In N.Y., Hank Gola writes for the "second straight major, there was little Sunday buzz," and it is the "old, dominant Woods that is really missed." This has "given ammunition to the people who insist that golf is all about" Woods. However, what fans are seeing take place this year "is that it could be about several" players (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 6/16).

LOST IN THE WOODS
: YAHOO SPORTS' Brian Murphy wrote it is "going to take a lot more from Kaymer -- and more importantly, from the rest of the current best players in the world -- to save the sport from slipping into pre-Tiger obscurity" (SPORTS.YAHOO.com, 6/15). In DC, Thomas Bowswell wrote, "Never have so many people wanted to send Tiger Woods a get well card." What if Woods "is washed up?" What does "golf have then?" As this U.S. Open "has clearly exposed with the early exit or irrelevance of recognizable names, the game of golf is down to a score of gifted but lesser lights, a couple of arriving twinkles in the sky such as Jordan Spieth, 20, and Mickelson, a beloved but slumping 44-year-old who may be on the wane" (WASHINGTON POST, 6/15). In Boston, Ron Borges writes Kaymer plays with "metronomic-like consistency but not much flair." He is a "great but boring" champion. Kaymer does not play "the kind of game that will bring golf new fans nor the kind that inspires wide-eyed hysteria" like Arnold Palmer once did "or awestruck wonder as Tiger Woods has for so long" (BOSTON HERALD, 6/16). In DC, Barry Svrluga writes Kaymer "is a worthy player," but there was a "metronomic feel to this entire week, a tick-tock-tick-tock-tick-tock sameness that might have lulled viewers into a nice nap" (WASHINGTON POST, 6/16).

DON'T JUDGE A BOOK BY ITS COVER: In L.A., Bill Dwyre wrote Kaymer is "not yet a media sensation," but if the media "takes the time to listen, he may be in the conversation soon." This is "not a pitch for making Kaymer the next big thing." It is a "suggestion that the raw material is there and we shouldn't overlook it, just because he speaks with a German accent and plays the game like a perfectly engineered Mercedes-Benz" (L.A. TIMES, 6/15). In Boston, Michael Whitmer writes Kaymer is "quickly becoming the face of golf played in the US" (BOSTON GLOBE, 6/16).
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