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Old Man Woods

January 02, 2008

Several interesting letters about Ron Sirak's "Old Man Woods" piece on our web site. This one, from Jack Christian of Oakland Hills, was intriguing:


Two weeks ago, while visiting Las Vegas, our group decided to try a little golf at Shadow Creek before the Mayweather Fight. The weather was nasty, 50 degrees with occasional rain. There were two other golfers on the course. One of them won the Target World Challenge a few days later. And yes, Mr. Sirak," He is fun to watch even if there is no one else playing against him.

That's the thing about Tiger. You feel, at some level, that he's one of us. He just loves the game. Plays a bit better than us, is all. Sirak offers stats to underscore Woods dominance:

There have been 44 majors played since Tiger turned pro. Besides Woods, five players have won multiple times: Phil Mickelson and Vijay Singh, both with three; and Ernie Els, Mark O'Meara, and Retief Goosen, two apiece. Add their totals and it comes to a dozen--one fewer than Woods. Nineteen players have been one-major-and-out guys since 1997--though each has one more than the disappointing six.

Jay Perlstein of Birmingham, Alabama, writes to second Sirak.

What a great article, clear succinct with no emotional attachment. Love him or hate him you have to admire Tiger Woods. We all need to step back and look at what he has accomplished...when his run is over and we know it all ends sometime, and we look back, only then will he truly be appreciated for what he has done.

Part of what he has done, as Sirak points out, is raise revenue for his competitors:

Is it too much to expect anyone to run with Woods? Absolutely. He's special. Is it too much to expect one of these rapidly aging young hotshots to have won a major by now? Absolutely not. What they have won, however, is a combined $77.8 million of the PGA Tour's cash, with Garcia leading the way at $19.5 million. Does the wealth available make players soft? Perhaps. Part of what makes Woods special is it has never been about money for him, only winning.

All which proves that a) The Old Man loves the game, and b) plays it better than anyone ever has.

--Bob Carney

(Photo: Dom Furore)