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The Tiger Woods-Phil Mickelson pay-per-view is nothing but a test for sports fans.

By Jimmy Traina
August 23, 2018

1. If you’re a sports fan (and I have to assume you are if you’re reading this), you are about to be tested in a big way.

Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson are playing in some made-for-TV golf competition during Thanksgiving weekend. (The date has not yet been announced.) The event, however, will not be on free TV. If you want to watch it, you’re going to have to pay, either through pay-per-view via your cable/satellite provider or on the Bleacher Report app. The price has not yet been announced, either, but I highly doubt it’s going to be 99 cents. But make no mistake: This is a huge deal not only for Bleacher Report, but every sports media company out there because they are dying to know what sports fans will pay extra for.

They’re going to sell this one-on-one battle as a big deal, when in reality, it’s just a useless exhibition. It’s not a major. It’s not a real tournament. However, it stars the most iconic golfer of all time, so you’re being tricked into thinking you’re getting something good. The reality is, it’s just a TV special. (What a coincidence that Mickelson joined Twitter yesterday in conjunction with the event’s announcement! Crazy how that worked out. They’re not trying to do anything they can to manipulate the public into forking over their money at all!) And if you pay for it, sports media companies are going to be overjoyed because then they know they have an audience who will actually hand over their money to watch stuff like this.

The danger here (and I use that word loosely, because this really isn’t that important in the grand scheme of life) is that this will open the floodgates for sports media outlets to eventually experiment with putting good things on pay-per-view. It’s not going to stop with Tiger-Phil if that’s a success. And I’m not saying you’re going to see an NFL playoff game or the NBA Draft or a college football playoff game on pay-per-view next year or the year after, but if you don’t think the leagues and networks, especially ESPN which just launched a streaming network, have that idea in the back of their heads for down the road, you’re not paying attention.

At some point the sports fan, as a consumer, has to say no. We get dumped on constantly. Games ending past midnight on the East Coast. A billion commercials during every sporting event. Offensive ticket prices. More offensive concession prices. Even more offensive prices for parking.

Now we’re going to be tested to see which sporting events we’re willing to pay for. If you shell out the money for Tiger-Phil, you’ll be giving sports media companies incentive to take advantage of you again. And again. And again. Just say no.

2. A brand new SI Media Podcast features an interview with Dallas sportscaster and viral video star Dale Hansen.

The 70-year-old Hansen, who works for WFAA, discusses his monologues on Jerry Jones, the national anthem controversy, the Cowboys signing of Greg Hardy, Michael Sam kissing his boyfriend during the NFL draft and others. In addition, Hansen talks about how his liberal views are received by a Dallas audience and the higher ups at his television station. He also shares personal stories about how life experiences have changed and shaped his current world views. You can listen to the podcast below or download it on iTunes.

3. In honor of Kobe Bryant's 40th birthday today, I'd just like to say that I still stand by this tweet 100%.

4. The Houston Astros have come up with a new and outstanding dugout celebration.

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5. Brandon McCarthy is not all fun and jokes on Twitter. Here he is on Urban Meyer.

6. A) I'll never get used to John Cena with hair. B) He should mix in a carb.

7. I also stand by this tweet no matter what Ryen Russillo says.

8. RANDOM HARD KNOCKS VIDEO OF THE DAY: One of the stupidest moments in Hard Knocks history. Texans linebacker explains why he doesn't drink Starbucks.

Traina Thoughts is the best of the Internet, plus musings by SI.com writer, Jimmy Traina. Get the link to a new Traina's Thoughts each day by following on Twitter and liking on Facebook. Catch up on previous editions of Traina Thoughts right here.And make sure to listen to and subscribe to the SI Media Podcast hosted by Jimmy Traina.

IN CLOSING: FYI: Urban Meyer was a bad guy looooooong before yesterday.

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