Tiger hasn’t looked like the golfer he used to be, which is understandable considering the last six months of his life. With his withdrawal from The Players Championship with an injury, the floodgates have been opened to criticize the once untouchable Woods. I myself feel he doesn’t look like the invincible robot on the course like he used to, but I’m not a professional golf writer. I’m just some asshole who sits in his basement, and believes other people read my thoughts.
You can’t say the same about a group of golf jouralists who have written off Tiger for this season. On Golf.com, they’ve collected various thoughts of golf writers, and they all have the same tone. Basically, they think Tiger is washed up, at least for this season, but some of their comments are far more biting than that. I’ve collected some of the best to share with you. These are all courtesy of an article on Golf.com:
Jim Herre, managing editor, SI Golf Group: Could be that at an age when many players are in their primes, Woods is past his. He’s been at the center of golf for almost two decades. That’s a lot of stress. Hope I’m wrong.
Damon Hack, senior writer, Sports Illustrated: What a run for Tiger. You can’t make his last six months up. The guy has turned into the Chicago Cubs.
Van Sickle: One pressroom wag said Tiger is starting to remind him more every day of Michelle Wie. (Sorry I stole that line, man.)
Alan Shipnuck, senior writer, Sports Illustrated: Hard to believe that in the prime of his career he could be an absolute non-factor for an entire season, but that’s looking more and more likely now.
Jim Gorant, senior editor, Sports Illustrated: If Tiger were a stock, now would be the time to buy. Can’t go much lower, but long-term, still lots of value. (I gotta stop reading Fortune.)
Dusek: No other golfer’s bar is set as high as Tiger’s. We have come to expect him to reach that level (circa 2000, 2001, 2006-2007) quickly and seamlessly upon his return every season. Clearly this is NOT just any season, and clearly he’s not going to meet that standard anytime soon.
Van Sickle: In fairness to Tiger, just about every other golfer who has endured marital problems has pretty much lost a year of his career. Playing through grief is one thing. Playing when your life is unsettled and unhappy and in disrepair is another. Few have done it successfully. So even if Tiger quickly regains his health, I think we now realize that regaining his top playing form is going to be more difficult than just flipping a switch.
Hack: Absolutely. The guy looks nothing like he used to — body language, swing, those bad sunglasses. How could he, with the half year he’s had? Now he’s going to lose more practice time and more tournament reps and still try to compete at the highest level at Pebble Beach, St. Andrews and Whistling Straits? I can’t believe how much has changed since Thanksgiving.
Van Sickle: Tiger suddenly reminds me of Fred Couples. For the first time, he looks like he doesn’t want to be No. 1 anymore. He looks like he wants out.
John Garrity, contributing writer, Sports Illustrated: Am I the only one who’s tired of Tiger revealing an injury after weeks or months of denying it, even when directly questioned about apparent limps or winces? Is he simply a compulsive liar? What is gained by blowing smoke up our asses with lines like, “it just takes time after a long time away.” I’m way beyond annoyed with it. I don’t mean to sound unsympathetic, but it shows total disrespect on his part to keep coming back to that “you don’t know how much pain I was in” line when he’s been misleading us about his condition. What’s wrong with a little honesty?
Evans: Damn. If Garrity is annoyed we should all take it seriously.
Shipnuck: His addiction to secrecy is so irritating. First the knee, then the Achilles, now the neck. Why can’t he just tell us what’s going on? It makes it impossible to know what is or is not b.s.
Cameron Morfit, senior writer, Golf Magazine: He wasn’t as much of a hothead, and wasn’t as short with people. That means at least he’s trying. Still, I agree that the secrecy thing is annoying. I agree with Hack. I don’t think he’ll win a tournament this year.
Isn’t it funny how hard the mighty can fall? I bet just last year these writers would’ve killed to suck Tiger’s ween. Now that he is vulnerable, they attack him like lions on a wounded wildebeest. I guess that’s what you get when you’re great. Everyone likes to attack those that are on the top of the mountain. It’s an easy way to forget about your own inadequacies. You’ve been shat on Tiger…
E.B. “Making you a better geek, one post at a time!”