Viet Nam News
By Robert Bicknell
Well, it seems like Tiger’s comeback is rolling along nicely, but he’s still having a few problems with his putter. His driving has always seemed to be a bit of a bugaboo, but if you listen to the comments by the top teachers and Tour professionals in a recent Golf Digest article, one thing is very clear…
Nobody has the slightest idea if Tiger will win another major, especially the upcoming Masters.
Some of the players and teachers are cautiously optimistic, but temper their optimism with a load of “ifs”, as in, “if Tiger stays healthy”, “if Tiger’s putting returns to form”, etc.
All in all, the comments range from his physical health, to his mental health, to almost everything under the sun. But one thing seems consistent and that is the younger players have no fear of Tiger, probably because they never faced him on a Sunday when he was in peak form and, to be honest, the “new” Tiger is very different than the old one.
The “new” Tiger smiles more, he signs autographs and hangs out with the guys. Whereas the old Tiger couldn’t care less if you lived or died and if you were foolish to get in his way as he charged towards a winning finish, he’d disembowel you with “the look”.
Personally, I think he went through a life changing experience when the cops found him on the side of the road. He could have easily died that night, either from an overdose or from crashing his car into a tree. I think that might have shaken him up to the point where he had to confront his demons and deal with them.
One of the big reasons why I was so negative about a Tiger comeback was not just due to the physical trauma to his body, but because he seemed to be the same jackass as before. He made excuses, he was never at fault, he was “Tiger” and the world should kiss his ass.
That guy doesn’t seem to be around anymore and, for that reason alone, I am pulling for a Tiger Woods comeback.
We all have our inner demons, some are bigger and more dangerous than others, but they have to be dealt with sooner or later. I have mine, you have yours and eventually you need to confront them.
The first step in fixing a problem is admitting there is a problem. Tiger refused to face the fact that he was his own worst enemy. Without his father to keep his ship on course and to provide moral guidance, Tiger went straight off the rails and we were all witness to his spectacular self-destruction.
We saw the same thing with Mike Tyson after Cus D’Amato died.
D’Amato was more than Tyson’s manager and trainer, he was Tyson’s surrogate father. He made sure Tyson stayed on the straight and narrow. Once he was gone, Tyson fell under the influence of every rat that came across his path, especially the biggest rat of all, Don King.
His self-destruction was epic.
Fortunately, Tyson eventually confronted himself and is in a better place mentally now. Despite the fact that he can never box again and all the bloodsuckers and leeches stole almost every penny from him, he seems to remain positive about the future.
Tiger apparently had the same awakening and seems grateful for the opportunity to make a comeback. He isn’t arrogant and full of himself. Rather, he seems more mature and self-assured. That’s a big difference.
In the last event, Tiger seemed to be aceepting of unlucky breaks and wasn’t rattled when putts didn’t drop, nor did he unleash a torrent of “F-bombs” and that is the giveaway about his new attitude. He kept himself together and simply kept his focus on the end goal, which is improving a little more every day.
He seems like a guy who knows he got another chance and he’s gonna ride it regardless of the outcome until his body cannot take it anymore. Of course he wants to win, but just by being out there and swinging with the boys again, he’s a winner.
The odds are not in his favour to win at Augusta, but with Tiger Woods, it’s not a good idea to bet against him…
Especially, if he has his head on straight. VNS