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The Recreational Golfer

Tiger Withdraws

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http://www.geoffshackelford.com/homepage/2016/10/10/roundup-tiger-takes-safe-way-out-at-expense-of-credibility.html

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I've read your comments and taken in the Tiger Woods/Safeway Open WD stories from as many golf writers as possible.

It appears we all pretty much agree...

636117047309235092-USATSI-9597457.jpg?__A) Tiger Woods may be afflicted with injury-induced golf yips that have not gone away and are not close to going away. What part of his game they afflict is not clear and not really important.

B) Tiger has had some strange and irresponsible moments, yet committing with last Friday while planning a weekend "cram" session to find a final something appears irresponsible even for someone who wisely made clear all along that this was a maybe start.

C) Tiger continues to allow surrogates to peddle stories about his comeback and he's making them look bad with such erratic behavior, statements and a fear of teeing it up on a big stage.

D) Passing on Arnold Palmer's funeral should have been a sign...

E) Jesper Parnevik was either full of malarkey, saw some nice range work, or was getting some sort of revenge. Or all of the above.

This is all rather sad except for Woods committing when he was apparently not even slightly sold his game was ready to go. He had bought himself leeway when he announced his return and still managed to bungle this. 

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Johnny Miller was among those quoted by John Strege, reporting from Silverado Resort, where players were most shocked and saddened. Johnny had a feeling this was coming.

“I just had a feeling. Everybody in the world was texting me, offering me congratulations [on Tiger playing Silverado]. I wrote back, ‘I’ll believe he’s coming when he tees off first thing Thursday morning on the first tee.’ My gut is that he wanted to come, but the hoopla, even on the Golf Channel the last couple days, he must be looking at that thinking, ‘Oh, my gosh. What am I getting into? I’d like to be home, taking my kids to school, running my restaurant, nothing like having to posting a score.’

“He’s got to suck up the pressure of it all, the tension, and go back in there and mix it up. It’s hard to do, because once you get away from the tour, life can be so sweet when you’re not so judgmental. The hardest thing about golf is the score. The greatest thing about golf is the score. If you post the scores you win. It’s the greatness of golf. Frank Sinatra at 70 probably couldn’t sing a lick, but he didn’t have to post a score.”

 

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I wish Tiger would've just come out and shot 75-75, and it would've been all good. Such a shame.. I guess his game is worse than that and maybe it's because of the yips..

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2 minutes ago, FinTurma said:

I wish Tiger would've just come out and shot 75-75, and it would've been all good. 

I agree, I don't think anyone was expecting much from him after being gone from competitive golf for so long. He's gotta get the rust off somehow. I'm surprised that he committed if his game was this unstable.

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13 hours ago, chspeed said:

Maybe he should play on the web.com tour for a while.

Like Elvis showing up to an Elvis Impersonators' contest....and coming 5th.

 

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11 hours ago, imsys0042 said:

Shame.   I would like to see him back.   He's the Anakin Skywalker of golf.

So you are saying that he becomes (or has become) Darth Vader.

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13 hours ago, David in FL said:

First you'd have to actually get him to the first tee....  ;-)

And get him to dress in drag :-P...............oh crap ive got to try and purge that image from my brain now!

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If he isn't ready he isn't ready.  Yes it was crappy that he committed and now withdrew, but I'm sure he would rather take the criticism of WDing than go through a terrible round of golf and not enjoy himself.  He didn't build up his "comeback" it was the Golf Channel and the what seems like millions of reporters/column writers trying to make a name for themselves so they do a Tiger "comeback" story.  I would rather him WD without hitting a shot than have him come back and be miserable and WD during/after the first 2 rounds...I want to see him come back as much as any other fan of his, but I also want to see him come back when he can play well and build up his confidence and his tournament form.  I don't have high expectations when he does come back, but I would rather see him come back and enjoy himself and have fun.

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This may make his comeback a bit harder. People might expect his game to be fairly on point when he does tee it up if he is willing to withdraw due to poor form.

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I'm disappointed that he's decided to withdraw, but not as disappointed as the people who bought tickets over the weekend.  For him to decide to commit on Friday makes me think that he's OK physically.  Consequently, I believe that the WD must be related to the state of his playing ability.  This makes me wonder if the state of his game will ever be good enough to give him the confidence he needs to play.  I have to think that no matter how long he works on it, his first time back in competitive golf will show some rust.  Rust will be embarrassing to someone who has had the career that he's had.  For him to come back, he'll need to accept that embarrassment, I think its a necessary step in returning to true competitive form.  

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Can you imagine how many people bought tickets to the Safeway Open.............................?

I smell a kickback or at least SOMETHING a little under-the-table when it comes to this whole thing. 

If he thinks he needs to go out and be in contention immediately or he won't come out at all... that's a dumb way to go about getting back into golf. He needs to come back and shoot a 75-78, miss a cut, who cares. Then in a few tournaments be in contention. Nothing wrong with that. 

And for the SHORT GAME of all things? Gimme a freaking break.

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17 hours ago, The Recreational Golfer said:

Tiger Woods withdrew for the Safeway tournament, saying his short game wasn't ready to compete at this level of play.

I don't think that's at all accurate.

He said "After a lot of soul searching and honest reflection, I know that I am not yet ready to play on the PGA TOUR or compete in Turkey. My health is good, and I feel strong, but my game is vulnerable and not where it needs to be."

No mention of his short game. This thread is about the only place where that's given as the reason.

10 minutes ago, jkelley9 said:

And for the SHORT GAME of all things? Gimme a freaking break.

No, not "for the short game."

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The short game reason is accurate. This from Golf Digest, quoting Notah Begay III:

Woods had yet to set foot on the grounds at Silverado Resort, but was scheduled to give a private exhibition at a Tiger Woods Foundation charity event at Pebble Beach on Monday. Although the 14-time major champion's full swing has been said to look strong, he apparently continues to struggle with shots around the greens.

"The last thing that comes into play that anyone who's been hurt knows is the acute very precise golf shots," Begay said. "Obviously it's not where he wants it to be. It's nothing to be concerned around. It's going to come. It's just trying to find the right tournament to return to."

 

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1 minute ago, The Recreational Golfer said:

The short game reason is accurate. This from Golf Digest, quoting Notah Begay III:

Woods had yet to set foot on the grounds at Silverado Resort, but was scheduled to give a private exhibition at a Tiger Woods Foundation charity event at Pebble Beach on Monday. Although the 14-time major champion's full swing has been said to look strong, he apparently continues to struggle with shots around the greens.

"The last thing that comes into play that anyone who's been hurt knows is the acute very precise golf shots," Begay said. "Obviously it's not where he wants it to be. It's nothing to be concerned around. It's going to come. It's just trying to find the right tournament to return to."

 

Right, Begay also mentioned "in-between" shots.  He could have been talking about in between a 4 and 5 iron, but I think it's pretty fair to assume it's those feel shots under 100, which would indicate the short game.  

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2 hours ago, Wally Fairway said:

So you are saying that he becomes (or has become) Darth Vader.

I'd say we are already at the point where he's thrown the Emperor down the shaft and well before the funeral pyre.   

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40 minutes ago, The Recreational Golfer said:

The short game reason is accurate. This from Golf Digest, quoting Notah Begay III:

Woods had yet to set foot on the grounds at Silverado Resort, but was scheduled to give a private exhibition at a Tiger Woods Foundation charity event at Pebble Beach on Monday. Although the 14-time major champion's full swing has been said to look strong, he apparently continues to struggle with shots around the greens.

"The last thing that comes into play that anyone who's been hurt knows is the acute very precise golf shots," Begay said. "Obviously it's not where he wants it to be. It's nothing to be concerned around. It's going to come. It's just trying to find the right tournament to return to."

I don't read that as the short game at all. He's also been able to pitch and chip longer than he's been able to make full swings.

The Begay quote says something entirely different, IMO, than the paragraph above it. He could be talking about a 112-yard wedge shot (where distance control is important), not a thirteen-yard chip-and-run. He's been able to do those latter things for quite awhile now…

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Just because he's been physically able to chip/pitch doesn't mean he's been doing it well. My guess is he had a bad day or two around the greens and doesn't want to relive that nightmare again at a tournament. 

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I think this is one of the best decisions Tiger has made to go along with some of the other good decisions he has made recently.  The decision to not come back early was a good decision and this decision, to withdraw after realizing over the weekend while playing / practicing at Stanford that his game isn't "good enough" is also a good decision.  No one has mentioned the fact that Tiger hasn't had the chance to religiously practice the last month due to the Ryder CUP and the Hurricane in FL (which is was he was playing in California).  So it seems to me that he was "cramming it all in" the last several days and realized that it is crazy to expect to cram over several days and then show up to a PGA Tour event and play to a +8 handicap level.  We've seen the opposite - Tiger coming back when he clearly wasn't ready and it didn't look good.  Not to mention, the standard in which he will be covered (there will be a camera on every single shot he makes) just doesn't warrant the need to push it and come back this week.  People say "other golfers hit bad shots and play poorly" but luckily for them, those golfers don't have every shot filmed and scrutinized.  They can play Shi**y in relative anonymity which makes suffering from poor play easier.  Tiger doesn't have that luxury.  He WILL be, guaranteed covered on every single thing he does and shot he makes and with this as fact, he knows struggling with his game after all this time would be incredibly painful for everyone not to mention his own psyche.

It sucks but I think it is for the best.  I believe his intentions were good but it just isn't worth it.  I'm actually happy to see he is capable of showing some tail between the legs restraint...

 

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"Vulnerable" is an interesting term. Ben Hogan quit playing competitive golf when he felt he could no longer compete. He refused to become a "ceremonial golfer". Maybe Tiger is thinking along these lines. I think there is a good chance you'll never see him on the Champions Tour.

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