Wednesday, August 4, 2010
Honestly, How the Hell is Tiger Not Winning This Week?
Unlike LeBron James, when Tiger Woods leaves Cleveland, it is normally a very good thing. Since the former NEC turned Bridgestone Invitational had begun playing at Firestone Country Club, a course that fits Tiger's eye better than anyone you'd see in the tabloids, Woods has owned the event. He's won when the conditions were easy (21-under in 2000). He's won when it played a little tougher ('05, when the winning score was five-under). He's won going away (like in '08, when he won by eight shots) and he's won when it was a fight till the finish (as in '06, when he beat Stewart Cink in a playoff). Hell, Tiger Woods has even won this tournament playing the final hole in nearly pitch dark conditions.
Augusta National, Pebble Beach, St. Andrews, Doral ... you need to all move over, because if Tiger is going to win on a golf course in 2010, this is it. It has to be.
Since 1999, when Tiger won for the first time at Firestone, the event has been hosted at this course 10 times, and Woods has won seven of them. That last one came in 2009, when it seemed that Tiger was finally finding his groove. The problem was, a man named Y.E. Yang stood in his way at the PGA Championship, and Tiger has won just once since his victory here a year ago.
If the cards play out as they normally do with Tiger, he will win here this week, and probably go on to win at Whistling Straits the following week, a place he finished tied for 24th back in 2004, the last time it hosted a major. The problem is, this year hasn't been anything regular for Tiger, and seems to continue that way.
But, the fact is, he is bound to win at Firestone. It only makes sense. If he is only going to have a single victory in one season for just the second time in his career, it best come here. After Akron, Tiger's record sure isn't nearly as polished.