PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem said Wednesday that Tiger Woods's decision to skip this week's Barclays may actually increase fan interest in the FedEx Cup playoffs.
Finchem was speaking to reporters at Westchester Country Club, the site of the Barclays, the first event in the inaugural four-tournament playoff. After saying that Tiger's absence would be a negative for this week's tournament sponsor and the fans, he went on to describe a possible benefit for the playoffs as a whole.
"Clearly we've been carefully watching the e-mails and blogs come through over the last better part of a week now, and the fans seem to have a different view," he said. "They seem to think that Tiger was going to win this thing, and now it's not so sure that he's going to win it, so it creates more excitement and more enthusiasm."
Woods, who is seeded No. 1, said last week that he was going to skip the Barclays because he was worn out after consecutive victories at the WGC-Bridgestone and the PGA Championship. While Finchem was able to find a silver lining in Tiger's absence, he said he was still "disappointed with the decision."
"It's not a decision I'd like to see him make, candidly, any week of the year, but he doesn't play them all."