The more things change, the more they start to look exactly the same. Here we are, just two weeks into the March 2013 PGA Tour season and Tiger Woods already has two tournament wins. Let me say that again, Tiger Woods, the best golfer of all time, already has two Tour victories before April. If you’re any golfer but Tiger, it’s going to be a very long season.
Now, before I get too carried away and declare Tiger Woods will win every single tournament this year, I will say this; golf is a tricky sport. One week you have it, and the next week you don’t. Through no fault of your own, you can look like a complete world-beater one swing and a complete idiot the very next. Over the past four years Tiger has been that model of inconsistency. If you’re a Tiger Woods fan, as I am, the past four years have been maddening. Watching and waiting for Tiger Woods to remember the fact that he is Tiger Woods only to watch him get amnesia every weekend has been exhausting. Perhaps for no other reason than he has been the exact opposite of Tiger Woods. Tiger used to sort things out on Thursday and Friday. The first couple days of a tournament were spent getting to know his surroundings and getting a feel for the golf course. Saturday and Sunday is when Tiger made his money. The weekend is what made him a legend. Lately, Tiger had shown up early and played well the first two days, only to disappear and hide over the weekend. That’s not Tiger Woods.
Enter the 2013 PGA season and re-enter the old Tiger Woods. This past weekend, Tiger was the most dominant he has been in years. He only putted the ball 100 times in four days, the fewest of his career in any tournament. He made 27 birdies, the second highest total of his career in a single tournament. I am not just giving you his stats from the weekend; I am telling you that if you don’t like this guy or wish to see him fail, you better make peace with the fact that Tiger Woods is about to dominate the PGA Tour like no other player since…well…Tiger Woods. For this golf fan, it couldn’t come soon enough.
The most refreshing part of Tiger’s climb back to the top of the PGA Mountain is that we no longer have to look at the most recent place holder in the world golf rankings. Sure Rory McIlroy is a nice golfer, and he managed to win himself a major while the real Tiger Woods was on sabbatical, but the world’s number one ranked golfer he does not make. In fact, every golfer that won a major while Woods was MIA should have a gigantic asterisk put next to their name for their ill-gotten victory. Every golfer that claims to have won a major over the past five years is a liar and should hang their heads in shame. Or, they should drop to their knees and thank their lucky stars that they were able to muster up the average performance it took to win said major during the rare cooling off period of the supernova that is Tiger Woods. Either way, they didn’t win it, because they didn’t beat the best in the world. The best there’s ever been or will be. They didn’t beat the real Tiger Woods. They shouldn’t feel bad; they’re not alone. There is an entire PGA Tour of their brethren that lay in the wake of Tiger. Gentlemen have tried to slay the beast known as Tiger only to fail.
Now, all seems right in the golf world again, and I could not be more excited for this PGA season. There is nothing worse than a weekend of golf when Tiger is not a factor especially in a major. I’ve decided to take a page from Tiger’s playbook and give myself a case of amnesia. I am going to forget about the last five years, as I am sure Tiger would like to. What Tiger did off the course is clearly scumbag-worthy, but I can compartmentalize as a sports fan. I choose to forget and move past the off-the-course issues and focus entirely on what the man can do on the golf course. He can make golf must-see-TV again. He can stop the carousel of average golfers winning majors from going round and round. He can make the PGA Tour his playground once again.
Still, there are a few questions that need answered:
- Will Tiger win a major this year? I say two majors and four more victories on tour this year for Tiger. How does that sound; about right?
- Is Tiger Woods back? Back to what? Being the most interesting and polarizing player on tour? Well, to that I say he never really left. He is back to winning majors and treating every player on the tour like the whiney ungrateful step children they are? Yes, yes he is.
- Is this good for golf? If you really need to ask this question you clearly know nothing about sports or golf. Tiger Woods then and Tiger Woods now, is the best thing to happen to golf since beer-cart hotties.
- Can Tiger be the Tiger of 2000? I laugh when I hear this question. Can the guy accomplish something that has only happen twice in the history of the sport? (Winning three majors in a single year). I guess so. After all, it’s only happen twice, and he’s done it once. I like those 50/50 odds.
- Are the players on the tour pissing their pants? You bet your sweet-ass they are. It’s kind of like being a deer in headlights. They see that 2013 red and black Chevy Silverado bearing down on them at 75 MPH, but there isn’t a damn thing they can do about it.
That, my friends, is what the end of this PGA season will look like. Come November, Tiger will simply drive off into the sunset leaving behind his wake, a scattering of PGA players on the side of the course. Watson, McIlroy, Mickelson, Stricker and Rose all left for dead on the side of the fairway with their tongues hanging from their lifeless bodies. Sadly, Tiger’s car will have some damage, but it’s nothing a good body shop and a few new major titles can’t fix.
Red and Black Sundays are back.