Four majors, four weekends. Zero scores below par for Tiger Woods. The drought continues. Afterward, he told the media:
“I was trying to enjoy it, enjoy the process of it,” Woods said a day later, when his even-par 72 led to a T-11 at the Ocean Course. “But that’s not how I play. I play full systems go, all-out, intense, and that’s how I won 14 of these things.”
He now hasn’t won one “of these things” in over four years. His last major triumph? The US Open at Torrey Pines in San Diego in June of 2008, when he beat Rocco Mediate in a playoff.
In the 18 majors since, here’s how Tiger Woods has fared:
* 4 DNP
* 2 missed Cuts
* 7 Top 10 finishes (three in 2009; one in 2012)
Tiger only turns 37 in December, so he’ll have at least another decade to catch Jack (who won 18; Tiger has 14). It probably won’t happen, but let’s all hold off until Ken Pomeroy releases odds on that, OK?
The arc of Tiger’s 4-year funk: Infidelity cost him/karma/mentally not there … injuries have hobbled him … none of the many young studs on the tour fear him … Tiger’s putting just isn’t where it was … he can’t close on weekends. It’s as if the media is running out of Tiger storylines, and we’re left to read tripe like this:
The problem is both fundamental and nearly impossible to fix. He wants it too much.
You can see it. He wears his Buddhist bracelet, but he’s not playing Zen golf. These major championships are really all that are left for him, in terms of athletic achievement, and the only thing that can let him reclaim his place in the pantheon of the world population. It’s too much to ask. His psychologist — a profane, jazz-loving, semi-manipulative genius named Earl — is dead, and nobody can replace him.