Saturday, December 12, 2009

Tiger Woods: The Redemption Story Begins

In a virtuoso PR move, Tiger is going underground. This is the only path he can take in which he can still ultimately have it all, and in thinking about it appears to be the obvious choice.

Here's the future how I see it:

  • It is "leaked" that Tiger is a sexual addict and is receiving professional help for his addiction.

  • His marriage may or may not work. From a PR standpoint, it doesn't matter. The fact that Tiger has shown remorse and is working on his situation earns him a pass from the public.

  • Tiger stays away from golf about a half year longer than what the public would like in order to build anticipation up into a raging froth.

  • He finally comes back, hat in his hands and contrite, and the public (and sponsors) go completely wild.

  • To make the scenario perfect, he comes back for a major, wins, and after sinking the last putt he crumples on the 18th green in tearful heap.

  • He continues as he did before - all is forgiven.

There are two stories the public loves - we like to see the mighty fall, and we love redemption stories. Kobe Bryant, Bill Clinton, Robert Downey, Rob Lowe - all have captured the hearts of Americans despite their transgressions, and this is just a short list.

The only thing that stands in the way of this working is Tiger himself. He has one chance, and one chance only, hence his days of being a male slut are over. Given how he's conducted his life thus far, that's going to he a huge challenge. It is a lifestyle to which he's been accustomed, the stakes associated with a fall are greater, and every tramp seeking her 15 minutes will be gunning to be the one to take him off the path. Like Odysseus sailing past the Sirens, his temptations will be incredible.

He's shown in the past he's probably the most mentally tough athlete that sports has seen. He'll now need to prove it off the golf course.

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