A sports-starved nation will turn its eyes once again to Tiger Woods, Tom Brady, Peyton Manning and Phil Mickelson for one glorious day of trash talking, side action, fundraising, and golf.
On Sunday, May 24, at 3pm ET, Woods and Manning will face off against Brady and Mickelson in The Match: Champions for Charity, a golf tournament to raise funds for COVID-19 relief. The showdown will be broadcast live from the Medalist Golf Club in Florida on TNT, TBS, truTV and HLN.
Calling the action will be Brian Anderson, along with NBA and Trash Talking Hall-of-Famer Charles Barkley, as well as 2008 Masters champion Trevor Immelman. Amanda Balionis and world No. 4 Justin Thomas will be roaming the course to offer analysis.
What could potentially make this truly great television is that all four participants will be mic'd up, allowing them to trash talk endlessly from anywhere on the course and even talk with commentators.
Brady got a jump on the smack talk with an April 23 Instagram post that included a photoshopped image of him and Mickelson standing with child-sized images of Manning and Woods, accompanied by the caption, in “Never had much of a hard time beating the colts or a tiger, don’t see this time being much different...”
Then, a couple of weeks later, all four of them got together for a virtual press conference hosted by Johnson, where the jawing continued. Mickelson showed off his trophy from the original Match, Tiger warmed himself with one of his several green jackets, while Manning started running down a list of places where Brady is hated: “Indianapolis, Denver, Boston — after he betrayed them and broke their hearts.”
The event is a follow up to The Match, the 2018 winner-take-all match play event between Woods and Mickelson, with Mickelson walking away with the $9-million purse after 22 holes, including four playoff holes.
In addition to the $10 million donation for the fight against COVID-19, viewers will be able to enter raffles to win experiences with Woods and Mickelson, with the drawing conducted live on the air. One lucky winner will join Tiger in the Bahamas for an all-expenses paid trip to the 2020 Hero World Challenge, another will play 18 Holes with Phil Mickelson at 2021 DLCF Invitational.
In terms of the format, the front nine will be “best ball,” followed by a modified alternate shot on the back nine. For those of you with loving families or otherwise full lives, best ball involves both teammates playing the hole, with the better score being the team’s score for that hole; in alternate shot, the players on a team take turns hitting the same ball on each hole, and alternate teeing off.
"From what I could find, I believe Brady's like an 8 handicap, and Manning's like a 6 handicap," Jeff Sherman of SuperBook at Westgate Las Vegas told ESPN. "So, slight edge to Manning there."
But according to Brady, who described his own golf game as “volatile,” he recently played at Medalist and shot a 106, which is not quite “8 handicap” territory. And Manning recalled that the last time he and Brady golfed together, they got smoked by an 84-year-old and a 77-year-old. Hopefully, Brady and Manning can rise to the occasion as they have on the football field. But in a world without sports, we're all winners here.
Watch The Match: Champions for Charity on Sunday, May 24th at 3pm on TNT, TBS, truTV and HLN.