Tiger Woods puts new putter in the bag, shows promising signs early at Dell Technologies Championship
Tiger Woods officially put a new putter in his bag on Friday for the first round of the Dell Technologies Championship. The good news for the 14-time major champ? The TaylorMade TP Juno passed its first test from six feet. The bad news? It was a bogey putt.
Woods found the left hazard on No. 10 at TPC Boston with his opening tee shot. After taking a drop, he missed the green and hit a pitch to six feet, but avoided further damage with his new blade-style putter, which has a similar look to the Scotty Cameron he won 13 of his 14 majors with.
On the next hole, Woods got more positive feedback that he made the right call switching away from the mallet he's been using since the Quicken Loans National in June when he nearly got that shot back with his second attempt with the new flatstick. Check out this beautiful roll from nearly 35 feet that stuns Tiger when it doesn't drop:
Seriously, how didn't that drop? Anyway, on No. 12, Woods two-putted from 38 feet, and then on 13, he rolled in a five-footer. For a second one-putt bogey in his first four holes to fall to two over. Hey, can't blame the putter for that.
From 1999-2010, Woods only used one putter in competition, but this is his third in two months. Woods found mixed results with the TaylorMade mallet, nearly winning both the British Open and PGA Championship, but also finishing 79th out of the 80 players who made the cut in strokes gained putting at last week's Northern Trust. Woods is 53rd on tour in that stat for the season.
Woods is expected to play this week and at next week's BMW Championship, the third leg of the FedEx Cup Playoffs. He'll need a strong showing in one of the two events to advance to the Tour Championship. After that, he's expected to be one of Jim Furyk's captain's picks for the U.S. Ryder Cup team. Hopefully, for Team USA's sake, Tiger has picked — and settled — on a putter by then.
UPDATE: Woods opened with a 1-over-par 72. On the plus side, he gained nearly 2 strokes on the field with his putting.