Is No 1 Really That Important


Each week on Golf Central and the Sprint Post Game, we beat the drum (some say into the ground) of the World Golf Ranking.
Whos No. 1? Whos No. 2? How close is No. 2 to No. 1? Can Phil Mickelson ' who moved up in points but is still No. 4 ' catch No. 3? Can Mickelson be No. 1 before the Masters? How about before the end of the year?
All that talk makes for decent conversation. And while I admit that I like the topic of Who is really No. 1 right now? best of all, I wonder how much it really matters.
This week Vijay Singh could lose his No. 1 ranking if Tiger Woods finishes fourth or better at the Nissan Open. Thats right, Woods back to No. 1 just like that. And Vijay Singh no longer called No. 1 in the world ' Vijay Singh.
Do you care? Does it really matter? Is Tiger better than Vijay?
Tell me if Im wrong here. As I break down some of the pros and cons of the No. 1 Topic.
The great thing about the World Golf Ranking is that it gives us hot topics for shows like the Sprint Post Game. It gets people talking about who can lay claim to being golfs top gun. The debate is great.
The Red Sox are No. 1 in Major League Baseball, the Patriots are No. 1 in the National Football League, and the Pistons are the NBAs best. We crave the idea of having a best.
It makes for great storylines when you are addressing a tournaments strength of field;' ie: four of the top seven in the world are competing this week at the Nissan Open.
It gives players something to shoot for. Singh, for example, was asked quite a bit about the quest to reach the top spot. He and Els have made it known that they covet the title as World No. 1.
It helps set the field for tournaments like the WGC events. And in the case of next weeks WGC - Accenture Match Play it gives us conversation about players on the bubble.
No. 1 in the world is just a ranking. Can anyone really say that Singh is playing better that Tiger or Ernie or Phil right now?
Tournaments are actually hurt by the ranking system. Suddenly the Booz Allen Classic or the 84 Lumber Classic have their respective reputations rise or fall based on how many of the top-ranked players attend. If No. 1 Vijay or No. 1 Tiger or No. 1 Ernie doesnt play your tournament, is that a letdown?
Todays infatuation with No. 1 takes luster off of the rest of the stars that play golf on the PGA Tour. Davis Love III is currently 10th and not being talked about much these days. Yet, if he plays your hometown event, its a pretty safe bet that youll make your way out to watching a few of his shots. Same goes for Adam Scott at No. 12 or David Toms at No. 15.
In short, we know who No. 1 is. But beyond the first five can you name the rest of the top 10?
So heres my conclusion: I love having a No. 1 in the wto talk about. I love a race for No. 1 in the world. I love a debate that comes from having a No. 1 in the world.
But answer me this: do you think Mickelson would rather finish the year as No. 1 in the world or do you think Mickelson would rather finish with two additional major titles?
Do you think Woods is more bent about being No. 2 in the world or the fact that hes gone since the 2002 U.S. Open at Bethpage without a major title?
Enough said ... I think. So I ask you: how much does being No. 1 really matter?
Email your thoughts to Kraig Kann