Sunday, September 23, 2018 at 6:47 PM

Tiger Woods Finally Wins One. But…

Posted by Anthony L. Hall

It’s one even he would concede doesn’t really count; based, that is, on the bar Woods himself set for career achievement.

In winning his 80th PGA Tour event and first since 2013, Woods showed us the magic is still alive.

The outcome of the 2018 Tour Championship was never in doubt on Sunday as Tiger Woods picked up his first victory since 2013. …

Woods leveraged a rejuvenated body and fresh swing into a season I’m not sure anyone could have imagined — Woods himself included — at the start of the year.

(CBS Sports, September 23, 2018)

Except that we’ve seen this “Tiger’s back” hype before. In fact, it has played out on several occasions since his infamous fall from grace in November 2009. The point is that he hasn’t won another major since then.

This is why what I wrote seven years ago in “Tiger Won … Finally,” December 5, 2011, remains as relevant today as it was back then.

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It is tempting now to assume that [today’s] triumph marks the restoration of Tiger as the king of golf. But, like I cautioned my old college roommate, a die-hard Tiger fan, one tournament win does not a dominant player make. And this is especially so if that tournament happens to be [a non-major]. …

That said, I am as happy as any fair-weather Golf fan can be that Tiger won … finally. I just hope it helps him regain his trademark confidence, which does for his game what Samson’s hair did for his strength.

His next tournament is another non-major scheduled for late January. But Tiger knows better than anyone that he will not be able to fully redeem his professional reputation until he wins another five Majors (i.e., from among the Masters in April, US Open in June, British Open in July, and PGA Championship in August).

____________________

Ditto.

Well, truth be told, Woods should probably lower that bar at this point. Because nobody in his right mind still thinks he has even a snowball’s chance in Hell of winning five more majors to eclipse Jack Nicholson’s 18.

Frankly, he should consider it a crowning achievement if he wins just one more to end his historic challenge at 15. Unfortunately, for him and his fans, his next chance does not come until next year’s Masters … six months from now. And only God knows which Tiger, if any, will show up.

On the other hand, with this 80th win, he has a real shot at eclipsing Sam Snead’s seemingly improbable 82. That would be no small feat. For a little perspective, consider that Phil Mickelson comes closest to Woods among current players in this respect. But he has only 43 Tour wins (and only 5 majors). And Woods has already won more PGA Tour events than his nemesis Nicholas, who ended his career with 73.

That said, corporate sponsors, TV networks, and even fellow players are probably as happy to see Tiger winning again as this beleaguered superstar himself. Because it’s a given now that the more he wins, the more everyone in Golf gets paid. This fact cannot be overstated … and should not be underappreciated.

Related commentaries:
Tiger roars, but does not bite…again

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