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Did you Watch a Tiger-less Masters?

The Masters is a tradition unlike any other.

However, without Tiger Woods, or Phil Mickelson playing on Sunday, the tournament’s televisions ratings (7.8) were the lowest since 2004. Last year’s event garnered a 10.2 rating when Adam Scott beat Angel Cabrera.

Those that tuned into the Masters on Sunday watched Bubba Watson win his second green jacket, holding off 20-year old phenom Jordan Spieth, Jonas Blixt, Miguel Angel-Jimenez, Ricky Fowler, and Matt Kuchar among others.

Watson and Spieth were tied going into the final round. Spieth, only twenty-years old, birdied four of his first seven holes to take a two-shot lead over Watson. However, the two-time Masters champion came back, and birdied eight and nine. On 13, Spieth went into the water, and Watson took advantage with another birdie. From there, the length of Watson’s game carried him to his second green jacket.

Did you watch Watson win the Master’s yesterday?

Early on in the final round, I enjoyed watching Spieth jump out to an early lead. He looked poised, and confident. He wasn’t named Tiger or Phil, but he brought the “next big thing” factor. Stars aren’t young forever. Take a look at the NBA, they had to move on past Michael Jordan. Golf will have to do the same thing with Tiger. Tiger hasn’t won a major since 2008, and is dealing with nagging injuries. Spieth gives golf fans hope for the future.

Shifting to Watson, most would argue watching him isn’t flashy. I would differ. He was smashing golf balls on Sunday. On the 13th, alone, he hit over 360 yards and was left with 140 yards. That’s remarkable.

By winning his second Masters, Watson extended the history books, too. He became the sixth lefty to win the Masters in the last 12 years. No left-hander had done that before Mike Weir in 2002.

Lastly, it was fun watching Fred Couples (54-years old), and Miguel Angel-Jimenez (50-years old) defy age, and compete with golf’s young guns for most of the tournament. Angel-Jimenez finished at four-under, while Couples was two-over.

In the end, Watson won another major at Augusta, and became the 17th golfer to win the event multiple times, joining the likes of Woods, Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, Mickelson, Nick Faldo, Sam Snead, Gary Player, Byron Nelson, Ben Hogan, and Tom Watson among others. 

Spieth may not have won either, and if he did,  he would have become the youngest ever to win a Masters. Instead, he gave hope to a sport that will have to move once Tiger and Phil do.

**For comments or story ideas, email Sam at tastadsam@gmail.com, and follow him on Twitter @samtastad.

Andrew Redington/Getty Images

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