Tiger Will Never Be The Same
June 14, 2010 12 Comments
This weekend at the US Open Phil Mickelson once again has an opportunity to overtake Tiger Woods as No. 1 in the world for the first time in his career. However, even if Phil Mickelson or anyone else on the tour for that matter does not take away the No. 1 from Tiger Woods in the years to come, we will not be seeing the Tiger of old ever again.
The perception by fans and media of Tiger Woods has been forever changed after the infamous marital infidelities that were exposed near the end of 2009. Subsequently, he took an indefinite lay off from golf. In March, Tiger announced that he would be playing in the 2010 edition of the Masters where he finished 4th place despite the long absence from competitive play. It was at this moment after the 2010 Masters when I realized we would never see the Tiger Woods that the golf world fell in love ever since he burst onto the scene with his first major victory at the 1997 Masters.
Immediately after his final round at Augusta this year Tiger Woods was interviewed and expressed his disappointment with his 4th place finish. However, during the interview Tiger was not just disappointed, he was obviously angry. This was a Tiger Woods that I had never seen before. You knew that he wanted to come back and show the world that he was still the games most dominate player despite not playing for a significant period of time. I’ve always loved Tiger Woods and mainly because on the course he was the most genuine player out there. He is not your typical golf personality as he is never afraid to show his emotions, whether it be joy or frustration. To the media though, Tiger Woods was arguably the most boring sports interview out there. Never one to stir up controversy during an interview. During this interview after his final round at the masters however, Tiger did not attempt to conceal his feelings. This was a man who had lost a reputation that he had worked his whole life for. A man who felt that he didn’t even have the one thing that made him truly great. This man we saw that day was the real Tiger Woods.
Throughout Tiger Wood’s entire personal ordeal he was my still my favourite golfer. I figured that he let his superstardom get to his head, which it did. A superstar that is really horny. I was cheering for Tiger during the 2010 Masters. I am not condoning anything that he did because what he did was horrible, but I kept giving Tiger the benefit of the doubt. I wanted the golfer back that I had been cheering for since I was a little kid. Not anymore. It may sound stupid but that one interview, which I can’t find, pushed me over the edge. For me, half of liking a player has to do with his personality and I can’t cheer for an athlete that is a flat out jerk. I don’t care how great a player you are I am never ever going to root for guys like Kobe Bryant and Terrell Owens.
Tiger will never be the same to me in that regards, but for the rest of you, Tiger will never be the same golfer either. Gone are the days of “Tiger Slams” and 12 stroke victories and they aren’t coming back. First of all, Woods is just not as good a player as he was just a few years ago. At the 2009 PGA Championship Tiger blowing a lead after 54 holes at a major for the first time in his career to virtually unknown Y.E. Yang. I think at this point we can all agree that Tiger isn’t one to choke. Unlike so many other golfers, Tiger doesn’t choke, he loses. And it’s fact that Tiger is losing more and more as the years go by. Tiger is constantly being out-driven by his partner, and he does not come out of the thick stuff with the strength and force that he used to have. I think we all sometimes forgot that Tiger is getting older. He will be 35 years old in December and obviously with age comes deterioration in play. Well I guess that’s not always the case in golf. Phil Mickelson is arguably playing the best golf his career as he is going to be 40 years old on Wednesday. Generally though you are going to see players decline as they get older.
I do believe that Tiger Woods will eventually break Jack Nicklaus’ major record of 18. Woods is currently at 14. However, it looks as though it is going to be majors scattered over a number of years. It is not going to be as fun watching golf without Tiger being his same old self on the course. By no means has there been a player in any sport who was as fun to watch dominate as Tiger Woods was. It will be sorely missed. As a person, I will never see Tiger Woods as the same entertaining character. I’m not sure about you guys, but I’m only going to be seeing a troubled, unpleasant jerk.
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