August 11, 2018

Look, I get the interest in Tiger Woods’s comeback, but the coverage this week on Golf Channel has been nauseating to the point of insanity. It’s one thing to speculate on how he might perform during the weekend and cover it during the tournament. It’s another thing entirely to drop his name into every friggin’ discussion they’re having. A discussion about grasses? Rich Lerner has to drop a line about how Tiger played on that grass back in 2002. There’s a chance for rain? Brandel Chamblee (who, BTW, has turned into the biggest Tiger suck-up on the channel) will recall Tiger playing in the rain at Sodapop Valley back in god-knows-when. Adam Scott being rated 76th in the world? Frank Nobilo has to mention Tiger was rated 76th in the work on May 5th, 1997. My god, you would think he was the only golfer capable to hitting an iron from 127 yards out to seven feet. I’m sure that’s never been done before.

I get the fact that they’re trying to lure in the casually-interested viewer, but there are lots of golf fans who are interested in the tournament and the field in total. And (at least for me) that makes the viewing less than satisfying.

I don’t care that he’s only four strokes back. It’s fairly clear (although not 100% obvious at this point) that Woods will go another year without winning a major, making it ten – ten! – years since his last major win at the 2008 U.S. Open. Ten years. Like, a decade. It’s so hard to fathom – if someone had said in June 2008 that Tiger Woods would go at least ten years without winning a major they would have been laughed off the face of the earth. I still can’t believe it myself.

I happen to think Tiger has one, perhaps two more majors in him, but that’s not altogether certain, for sure. As I’ve said before, Golf Channel and the other sports outlets slobber over all the great shots he’s making out there, but they don’t show the putts he’s missing, the drives in the rough, the grinding his 43-year old body has to do week in, week out. It’s probably harsh to call him an ordinary PGA Tour professional at this stage in his career, but he’s certainly no better than an above average golfer. Of course, he’s got too much talent and expertise in his DNA not to play well whenever he is healthy – something he appears to be for the first time in a long time – but the level of golf he is playing just doesn’t equate to the amount of ass-kissing and non-stop coverage he’s getting. You want to focus attention on Tiger Woods? Do it from the angle of his age and the competition he is facing out there. These “young guns” may respect Tiger, but they don’t fear him. And they can hit the ball further and more consistently than he can.

One final thought: it’s ironic that the kind of modern-age, blast it off the tee as hard and as far as you can golf as played by the Dustin Johnsons, Justin Thomases and Brooks Koepkas of the world – the kind of golf that Tiger has to excel at in order to pass Jack Nicklaus’s record of 18 majors is the same kind of golf Tiger himself introduced nearly two decades ago. In that regard, he’s become a victim of his own success. The fact that Tiger is playing as well as he is at this point in the year is something to celebrate; certainly no one could have expected this back in January. But enough already with the saturation coverage. After a while you just get sick of it.

Filed in: Golf & Sports by The Great White Shank at 20:36 | Comments (0)
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