Shame and embarrassment were quick and unforgivable.
Nevertheless, when Matt Kuchar did it right with his temporary Mexican caddy, David Giral Ortiz – with a promise last week to pay him $ 50,000, he felt he deserved to be on the bag in Kuchar's November Mayakoba Golf Classic winner who netted him nearly $ 1.3 million – the fallout was quiet.
But will it all be forgotten? Or will this event stay with Kuchar as he moves forward with his career?
Will it affect his sponsors? Will golf fans continue to pay tribute to him as some have since news broke their short-lived Ortiz with a $ 5,000 payment in the wake of the Mayakoba victory?
After the aggressive rubbing of social media disgrace and subsequent media coverage of the Kuchar saga, culminating in the golfer who made nearly $ 47 million in career tournament earnings, and accepted that he had done a bad thing about being cheap, many people want the story to go away.
Of course no more than Kuchar. But will it go away? Or will it follow Kuchar?
The post spoke to a cross section of sources ̵
Although some believe he will never completely lose it, the overall feeling is that Kuchar, known as one of the good on the PGA Tour, is beyond this, and it will not affect him.
"I do not think it will stick to him because he did not commit a crime, he did not cheat, he did not undermine the integrity of what he knew," said Daniel Wallach, a prominent sports lawyer leading Wallach Legal in South Florida. "He was just a little tight with his money, which many of us can be at times. He acknowledged his mistake and he did it right. I just don't think this will hurt his brand long-term. Owning a bug is even a virtue. & # 39;
Joe Favorito, a long-term sports consultant and professor at Columbia University, said he understood the fall of the Kuchar incident "because it affects as many areas as hot-button issues, whether it underpaying people as elite athletes and everything is going on with the border [Mexico].
"But at the end of the day, honesty is the most important thing," said Favorito. "You can't lie. If you are fair and especially if you are a good person – and all indications are that [Kuchar] is not a guy who flaunts things and he tries to do the right things – I think you overcome these things by trying to do the right thing. "
" The goal is to shorten the news cycle and although it could have been shortened much faster if it was handled from the start, he did the right thing last week and you continue People think I will always bring it up, but I think about where he is going, if you are a brand, the Tour, a golf player, it looks like he did the right thing and it is definitely .
When the post reached Bridgestone Golf, which is Kuchar's largest sponsor (he plays their clubs and balls), Dan Murphy, the company's CEO, issued this statement:
"Matt Kuchar For almost two decades, he has served as a huge ambassador for Bridgeston e-mark and Golf game. It is important today, and it has always been Bridgestone Golf's policy not to engage in the personal business relationships of our tour team members and their independent support staff. "
Sketchers, another of Kuchar's most prominent sponsors, did not make anyone from their company available for comment.
A veteran PGA Tour caddy, who requested anonymity, told the post:" I like the guy , but he will keep that for the rest of his life. As time goes by, no one will remember how he did it eventually, they will remember that he is a cheap tax. & # 39; & # 39;
Caddy continued to say that by giving Ortiz the $ 50,000 he felt was fair wages, Kuchar did not necessarily do the right thing. "He did it enough."
"Caddy wanted $ 50,000 … give him $ 100,000," he said.
Kuchar's full-time caddy, John Wood – who did not work Mayakoba, because Kuchar was a last-minute addition to the field, and Wood had a previously planned engagement – came to his boss's defense on Twitter.
"I do not understand the need to tear a guy who has used his career to try to maintain the game and himself to some very high standards," wrote Wood. "No one is perfect. All we can do when a mistake is made is rethinking, apologizing and making changes. Crucifying for a mistake fails. "
Fellow PGA Tour veteran Zach Johnson also came to Kuchar's defense on Twitter.
"He has been clearly humiliated, but his true heart and character surfaces," Johnson posted. "A high integrity man is one who upholds their mistakes, learns from them, asks for forgiveness, and takes the necessary steps to change."
Kuchar's short-changing Ortiz became public when a PGA Tour journalist named Tom Gillis was hit by it and tweaked Kuchar on Twitter when Kuchar was about to win the Sony Open in January.
On January 11, Gillis tweeted, in part: "If Kuchar wins this weekend [at the Sony Open] Let's hope he pays his husband more than [$3,000] as the last victory. Could have changed man's life."
"It wasn't about to lubricate Matt, it was, "It's wrong and you should try to do it right." Gillis told Detroit News recently. "I sent the tweet out to get the ball rolling, get some steam. One thing led to another. I don't think Matt is a bad person. I'm sure he has made massive amounts of charity that aren't really affected. I don't think he should be remembered for this. & # 39; & # 39;