Tiger Woods plummet from grace has reached terminal velocity. Woods not only struggled this week at the 93rd PGA Championship he looked downright awful. I walked a round and a half with him and after viewing his wide array of good and bad shots, mostly bad, I decided to retire to the media center and watch the rest of the Tiger Woods tragedy on television.
Fans clamored for a glimpse of Woods with the expectation of seeing the Tiger of old. The Tiger that hit amazing shots sank miraculous putts and energized galleries with earth shaking roars. But instead they say a broken man struggling with his swing and his confidence. Woods labored around the Atlanta Athletic Club like a prisoner on a chain gang. He went through the motions knowing deep in his mind that his chances of even contending this week were slim to none.
My sources close to Tiger said that he was working on his swing and learning to rust his new mechanics and if this week is any indication of that then Tiger is still a work in progress. At times he showed that he still had some command of his game, but at others he looked as raw and unsure as ever. After outing in his first round Tiger blamed his poor play on “going away from a mechanical swing and relying on feel.”
My question is if the mechanical swing got you to 3-under par after five holes, then why change it in the middle of the round? Why not just go with what works, take what the course gives you and live to fight another day. After his double bogey at the 15th hole on Thursday, the wheels came off of the Tiger Woods machine and he ended up in the pits in need of serious repair.
But, despite the fact that Tiger’s PGA Championship was over long before the second round was officially in the books, he showed the courage and class of a champion. He grinded it out until the very end and he never gave up. I hope that all the critics and naysayers that take this opportunity to kick Tiger while he is down, also mention that in order to win like a champion you must first learn how to lose like one.
Has Tiger hit rock bottom? Who Knows? It’s clear that he has some serious challenges to address both on and off the course. He simply isn’t the players we have grown accustomed to seeing. But one thing Tiger hasn’t lost is the love of his fans. It’s doesn’t matter if Tiger Woods loses by ten strokes or wins by ten strokes his fans will still stick by his side through thick and thin.
I pray that Tiger Woods comes back, finds his game and starts winning again. The game needs him, the fans want him and he needs to see that he can still get the job done. The scary thought is that if Tiger Woods has hit rock bottom then compared to other players on tour his bottom would be a hall of fame career.
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