'The Tiger Effect' and the Honda Classic - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, FL-news & weather

'The Tiger Effect' and the Honda Classic

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Weeks before a certain legendary golfer takes center stage at the Honda Classic, Tiger spoke Thursday at PGA National.

13-year-old up and coming golfer Tiger Christensen, that is.

“It's my real name, it's not a fake name,” he said.

You can count that Tiger among the fans excited to see the other Tiger on the prowl.

“I’m going to look forward to the Honda Classic to see how Tiger Woods plays,” Christensen said. “I hope he plays good!”

With the announcement that Woods in this year, organizers are now bracing for what can only be called the “Tiger Effect.”

“Just having him out there, you see what happens to TV ratings, you see what happens to attendance,” said Andrew George, tournament director for the Honda Classic.

Take for instance Tiger's first year at the Classic in 2012.

Attendance numbers that year jumped 45%.

Attendance has steadily climbed since - breaking records last year even as Tiger was out with a back injury.

His first time back since 2014 could bring new records.

It's not the only thing working in the tournament's favor, however.

“With Doral going away and moving to Mexico City, this is truly the only event in South Florida you get to see the best players in the game of golf,” George said.

It also has area restaurants, like Rocco’s Tacos, salivating - and bracing for big business.

“He's probably going to draw a big crowd for sure,” says manager Alex Farley. “Hopefully he'll come in here, we'll see.”

Ultimately, it's all about the play on the course, and Christensen is hopeful his idol will return to form at the classic.

“He just needs to be consistent now, and he'll be good again.”

Woods has said that he will play a full schedule in 2017, and the classic will be a key stop on his journey to the Masters in April.

The Honda Classic is set for February 20th thru 26th at PGA National

For tickets or more info about the Honda Classic, visit www.thehondaclassic.com or call 1-844-8Honda8 (844-846-6328).

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