Since his last win in 2013, optimism for the 2013 player of the year gradually turned to despair.
2014 we saw a 79 at Torrey, a WD at Honda due to spasms, and the eventual announcement of back surgery. No Masters. TW came back with hope only to MC at Quicken and the PGA. It was around this time that I first became fully aware of the Tiger haters. Maybe it was twitter providing everybody a voice. Most likely, this was the first time his on course performance gave the haters a loud voice and reasons to rejoice. Bye Foley, enter Como.
2015 was the peak of Tiger mocking. There was the yips and 82 at the Waste Management. The WD after deactivated glutes. A brief flash at the Masters, but then a career high 85 at the memorial. Chambers Bay had memorable embarrassing moments that were painful to see. More mockery. Missed cut at St. Andrews. It was at this point Shipnuck called that Tiger would be nothing more than a ceremonial golfer. The lone sign of hope in 2015 was the Wyndham. September 2015 another back surgery.
2016 no golf until the Hero World Challenge. He played well and there was hope.
2017 quickly got bad with a MC at Torrey then Dubai happened. I remember staying up to watch it and knowing on the walk from the range something was wrong. Another back surgery. No Masters. No Open. Nothing. At this point nearly everybody in golf media was in the retirement band wagon. KVV even suggested he should become a swing coach.
I don’t fault anybody for calling Tiger done. There was plenty of evidence to support it. Who ever had that many back surgeries and had success? There is no added joy for me seeing Tiger win and proving them wrong. However, I will take great joy knowing that all those Tiger haters that mocked him know there time is up. After writing those sentences about 2014-2017 I feel this is one of the best comeback stories in sports history.
I’m a big Tiger fan. I play golf because of Tiger. One day when I was 15 my Dad begged me to watch golf with him. It was Sunday when Tiger won the Masters. It was then that I wanted to play golf. Nearly 21 years later and I love golf. I enjoy watching nearly every tournament. Yet, I can’t recall the last time I was this excited to watch a round of golf. I may not sleep tonight.
Tiger is 1 off the lead on a course he hasn’t played in 20 years. The red and black is coming. API next week. Tiger Is coming down Magnolia Lane off back to back wins.