Maybe I’m missing something but the amount of time the sports media spends on talking about golfer Tiger Woods doesn’t match his recent work on the links. Maybe it’s just my local station but when reporting on the recent US Open the sports anchor mentioned the guy who won but also spent the same amount of time mentioning where Woods ended up on the leader board. Make no mistake, Tiger will be on the list of great golfers of history but he seems to be past his prime and doesn’t deserve the amount of coverage he gets in the press today.
There is no doubt that Woods was one of the great golfers of our time. He was the top money winner for nine years and is still the top money winner overall. He has won 14 major tournaments (US Open, The Masters, etc…) but since 2010 he has only won two tournaments and no majors.
I think like Sampson and his hair of the old Biblical story, Tiger became average after his nasty infidelity scandal and fallout in late 2009. I really think his personal problems took away his game as if having affairs with all the women he is reported to have bedded helped his confidence to win golf tournaments. Once that part of his lifestyle was gone his confidence went with it.
Tim Dahlberg of the AP feels the same way:
“That was the old Tiger,” Watson said. “That was beautiful to watch.”
On the second point, we can all agree. Woods was nearly perfect on a brilliant day in San Francisco, where his game pretty much matched the weather. The swing may look a little different than before, but any of the 33,500 or so who strained to watch the featured pairing of Woods, Watson and Phil Mickelson had to feel as if they were watching something beautiful in the making.
But this wasn’t the old Tiger Woods. That guy is long gone, last seen down the coast of California somehow finding a way to win an Open on one leg while his wife and toddler daughter waited with hugs of congratulations.
The new Tiger travels lighter and walks more carefully after four surgeries on his knees. He’s got a tendency to miss short putts, and at times he still struggles to find the psyche that used to intimidate his opponents before they ever stepped to the first tee.
I understand the sports press need to have stars but Tiger doesn’t deserve all the ink he still gets. It is almost like the press Rickie Fowler gets about the kinds of hats he wears during each round.
The Memorial is held near where I live and the local press focused on Tiger. “Will Tiger play… what did he shoot today… the crowd was pulling for Tiger…”
Yes Tiger won the Memorial but the local press focus on Woods was just like last year when he ended up skipping the tournament due to injury.
So much focus on the now average Tiger is about as old as the stupid Caddy Shack lines shouted out by the crowd during important putts.