Tiger Woods' return to the links proved nearly as popular as Butler vs. Duke -- in terms of Web traffic, at any rate.
Masters Live, CBS’ live streaming of select holes from the 2010 Masters golf tournament, drew 556,090 unique users yesterday as fans logged on from the office to catch their first glimpse of the freshly "rehabbed" golfer. That figure represents a 133 percent increase compared to the 239,000-plus viewers that streamed part of the Masters last year -- and is just short of the 575,000 fans that streamed the NCAA men's basketball championship game on Monday.
CBSSports.com’s Masters footage resulted in the consumption of 392,901 hours of live video, a surge of 71 percent versus the same day in 2009. The average fan streamed roughly 17.5 minutes of video on Thursday, up from 14.63 minutes last year.
For its 2010 coverage of the Masters -- which marks Woods first tournament appearance since the scandal broke late last year -- CBS has significantly ramped up its online coverage. In total, Masters Live will deliver 86 hours of live video, an increase of 50 percent versus 2009. For example, the venue is streaming complete live coverage of select pairs of golfers (including Woods on Friday) as they play holes 10 through 18. As in the past, fans can stream the action from select holes in its entirety.
CBS has signed AT&T and Dove Men+Care as sponsors of Masters Live.
See also: "Mixed Feelings Surround Tiger's Return"