Announcers openly booing players? Acceptable at the WM Phoenix Open.
And there were no shortage of boos Saturday afternoon and evening at TPC Scottsdale, especially on the 16th tee box. The rowdiest hole in golf is known for good shots being praised and bad ones being ridiculed.
But the announcers getting in on the fanfare? That’s what Smylie Kaufman and Kevin Kisner did on Saturday’s broadcast. NBC Sports set the duo up a few yards from the 16th tee box, and from the first tee shot, they provided a different type of commentary than we’ve seen from an NBC broadcast in some time.
Sure, Colt Knost and Amanda Renner have set up shop on this hole in previous years and done a stellar job, but with the CBS crew having the week off thanks to the Super Bowl, it was NBC’s time to showcase something new.
They may have struck gold.
Fans chimed in on social media in support of the duo and their non-stop debauchery from the 16th tee. Kisner even had a football he would pass to players for them to toss into the crowd, but the duo didn’t hold back commentating on the golf.
They praised good shots and boo’ed bad ones. They were clearly having fun, and the excitement of the 16th hole truly came through on the broadcast.
Here’s some of the best reactions to the duo making their debut from the tee box.
Kiz and Smylie hanging out on 16 is such a proof of concept that golf telecasts would be so much better if they leaned into the fact that Thursdays/Fridays/Saturdays are very different than Sundays.
Try stuff. Have fun. Mix in different voices. It’s great!
— D.J. Piehowski (@DJPie) February 10, 2024
No clue if Golf Channel and NBC would go for this, but on the weeks they aren’t airing the PGA Tour and another tour at the same time, they could have Kiz and Smylie be Peyton and Eli on an alternate feed.
— Ryan Ballengee (@RyanBallengee) February 10, 2024
This Waste Management broadcast is just a delight. Kiz and Smylie are crushing it.
— Aaron Korolnek (@Aaron_Korolnek) February 11, 2024