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Jim Nantz Says He Was Being a Little ‘Cheeky’ With Apparent CW Joke at the Masters

Jim Nantz caused a social media storm on Sunday morning at the Masters when he seemingly referenced LIV Golf’s TV partner, the CW Network, on the CBS broadcast. As Brooks Koepka finished his third round at Augusta National, his ball came to rest on a crosswalk on the 15th fairway, and Nantz said, “There it is, right on the CW … the crosswalk.” 

Golf fans might have interpreted the brief comment as a jab at the Saudi-backed tour, but according to Nantz, the remark was nothing of the sort. 

Nantz recently joined Jimmy Traina’s SI Media With Jimmy Traina podcast to break down his Masters week coverage, calling his last Final Four, and more. 

When Traina asked the legendary broadcaster to explain the CW comment, Nantz shared how surprised he was that the line made such a stir. 

“I'm honestly shocked that there was any kind of reaction to it. First off we were on for 29 hours, either taping or being on the air. So, for the masters to be summed up in a throwaway line for me on a Sunday morning—I find it all pretty amazing, what people latch on to.”

Nantz, who has anchored the CBS Masters coverage since 1989, went on to provide some context surrounding the apparent joke. 

“It definitely was not a shot. It just was something that I could see for the first time that his second shot at 15 had ended up on the crosswalk. And that's a rarity, you see a player on the crosswalk. It’s just the way my brain works, sometimes.

“I said that, ‘There he is on the CW, the crosswalk.’ I was just, maybe being a little cheeky. I certainly didn't mean it to be a shot. It was not a shot at all. Maybe it was just trying to be a little whimsical.

“But, you know, the bottom line is, I think that we showed every golfer in that field last week a tremendous amount of respect, no matter what tour where they're playing. And there certainly wasn't an attempt to create any sharper edge or division between the game.”

“To me it was, it was a nothing. It was just—what is it that Al [Michaels] says sometimes—he has a little bit of a rascal in him. You know, if you get to know me a little bit, and I'm talking about off the air, that's a lot more of the kind of the way I communicate with people than maybe what you might think if you watch my broadcasting. But it was meant to be, nothing, basically. It was just on the crosswalk,” Nantz said. 

Traina, seeking some clarification, then asked Nantz if he had the CW Network in mind or simply made a coincidental reference. 

“I really wasn't even thinking about it. You know, the CW has certainly got a lot of attention because of its alliance now with taking the, what would you call it, time buy, from the other tour,” Nantz said. “You're overthinking it right now, Jimmy, let's just put it that way.”