PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. -- There have been enough of these post-scandal Tiger Woods press conferences that they now seem to follow a similar pattern -- the obligatory questions about where his game is, the awkward queries about his personal life, the occasional softballs about the changes to this hole or that one.
Sprinkle in questions this week about the differences between Woods now and when he obliterated the Open field at Pebble Beach in 2000, and Woods throughout his 35-minute session mostly wore the glum expression of a man who would rather be just about anywhere else.
As far as news, Woods said his game is coming along thanks to more rounds under his belt; he said his neck still isn't where he wants it to be but that he can play through it, and he said he's just fine without a swing coach ("A lot of guys out here don't have a swing coach," he said). At one point, Woods even gave some props to Phil Mickelson, saying it was only a matter of time before the five-time U.S. Open runner up broke through with a win.
It all made for fairly bland material, with the perhaps the only worthwhile nugget coming when Woods was asked how long he planned on competing.
"I probably got another week in me," he cracked. "No, I love it. I love playing and I love practicing, and once that starts going away, I've got to get the hell out. I can't ever see that happening, but once it does, me being me, I've got to go."
*-- Sam Weinman