Tag:Tiger Woods
Posted on: August 21, 2011 9:18 pm
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Fed Ex Cup winners, losers from Greensboro

Posted by Will Brinson



GREENSBORO, NC -- The upside of playing in the Wyndham Championship is that there's a significant chance to make a move in the Fed Ex Cup standings. The downside of playing in the Wyndham Championship ... well, actually there's no downside to not playing, really, especially if you're on the bubble for the Fed Ex Cup.

By not playing, there's a huge downside, as someone else can take your spot in the PGA Tour's postseason. Also, if you play badly, you can end up on the outside looking in and/or not advance yourself enough to get a shot at $10 million. With that in mind and the Fed Ex Cup standings now "set" (technically still "projected" I believe), let's take a spin around some winners and losers in terms of the Fed Ex Cup standings.

WINNERS
Padraig Harrington
-- It looked like Paddy was doomed to take a vacation from his vacation's vacation, but some late movement by the field -- in particular the collapse of Jeff Mallinger -- kept him in the field and pushed him into the PGA Tour's postseason.

William McGirt -- McGirt knew he was done for the postseason after his round. He mentioned as much when talking about his fear of looking at the leaderboard. But, and I hate to pick on a young guy here, Summerhays melting down made fellow rookie McGirt the last man in on the Fed Ex Cup. He's probably pretty happy right now.

Arjun Atwal -- The 2010 Wyndham Championship winner is in good company with Paddy and McGirt, as they're the last three guys in when it comes to the Fed Ex, although I'm not sure anyone understands how he's even there at this point. On Friday, Atwal looked like a lock to get pushed down by other contenders playing well at the Wyndham (he missed the cut) but somehow survived.

Webb Simpson -- Simpson's win at the Wyndham pushed him into third place overall in terms of Fed Ex Cup points, pretty darn impressive for a 26-year-old. And as a result, he's got a substantially better chance at winning the postseason and picking up the huge prize that's available to golfers who aren't headed home for the year. $10 million could conceivably even afford him the chance to have David Feherty look after his screaming baby.

Tommy Gainey -- Two Gloves can't be thrilled with how his final rounds at the Wyndham shaped up, but he did finish third and as a result move himself into the No. 30 spot in the Fed Ex rankings. That's not the greatest consolation prize, of course, but it does give him a slightly bigger advantage when the PGA's postseason kicks off.

Ernie Els -- Els was originally the "last man out" when the Wyndham began, which is exactly why he came to Greensboro. And though his weekend had to have been disappointing and though he probably thought he should have won given where he sat Friday, he made the postseason with his performance at the Wyndham after sidling his way on up to 118th overall.

LOSERS
John Mallinger -- With nine holes to play, Mallinger had propped himself up to almost the top-100 in terms of Fed Ex points. Then he managed to card four bogeys on the back nine and absolutely blow up any shot he had of the postseason. I distinctly remember remarking that this is precisely why players should come to Greensboro ... and then that happened and Mallinger ended up gaining just 26 strokes.

Daniel Summerhays -- Speaking of meltdowns, Summerhays didn't have the best of days on Sunday. He was understandably dejected after the round, considering that he shot 2-over on the back nine, when most of the other players in Greensboro were making moves. That mild blow-up cost him a chance to get to the postseason in his rookie year. Though, in fairness, he might have had to win in order to actually make the postseason. So you can't be too hard on him.

Justin Leonard -- Leonard had his fate in his own hands, which might make the fact that he missed a par putt (albeit a long one) on 18 that literally pushed him out of the playoffs. It was his third bogey of the day and even though he ended up finishing 17th at the Wyndham, he ended up 126th on the Fed Ex Cup standings, which is good enough to earn him absolutely nothing for the next few weeks. Rough way to go out.

Tiger Woods -- But, hey, at least Leonard tried. Woods missed the cut at the PGA Championship and as a result found himself 129th overall in the Fed Ex standings. He only dropped three spots by not playing at Greensboro, but the point is that he wasn't in the playoffs to begin with, and he certainly had an opportunity to to come here and work himself into the playoffs. He was too busy, apparently, promoting his video game. While I applaud that, and I understand that he might not necessarily want to play five more weeks of golf the way he's hitting the ball, it's kind of sad to see Tiger wrap up the year like he did.

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Posted on: August 8, 2011 6:28 pm
Edited on: August 9, 2011 2:17 pm
 

Are today's young guns the best the PGA has seen?



Posted by Ryan Wilson

The 93rd PGA Championship begins Thursday at the Atlanta Athletic Club. It's been 10 years since the final major of the season was held at the AAC, 10 years since David Toms got up and down on the 72nd hole to beat Phil Mickelson for his first (and only) major victory.

At the time, Tiger Woods was 25, the top-ranked player in the world, and just months removed from one of the most spectacular runs in golf history. From the 1999 PGA Championship to the 2001 Masters, Woods won five major titles (including holding all four majors at the same time -- '00 US Open, '00 British Open, '00 PGA, '01 Masters).

For the 1999-2001 seasons, Woods won 22 PGA events (including the five majors), and not only was the competition nowhere close to challenging him, they were decidedly older. Ernie Els, David Duval, Phil Mickelson, Lee Westwood, Colin Montgomerie, Davis Love III, Hal Sutton, Vijay Singh, and Tom Lehman made up positions 2-9 in the 2000 World Golf Ranking, and only Duval (28) and Westwood (27) were under 30. In fact, the average age for these players was 33. (Hall Sutton, 42, and Tom Lehman, 41, were the oldest.)

 

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Almost every year for the last decade the media would identify young, talented upstarts who would test Woods' supremacy. At one time or another, Sergio Garcia, Charles Howell III, Aaron Baddeley, Justin Rose, Adam Scott and Anthony Kim were all names mentioned as possible challengers. To date, they've combined for zero majors. (Though Scott did win the '04 Players Championship, the '06 Tour Championship and last week's WGC event at Firestone. You may have heard something about that.)

Now the names atop the World Golf Ranking include the likes of Martin Kaymer (26), Rory McIlroy (22), Jason Day (23), and Dustin Johnson (27). Kaymer is the defending PGA Champion, McIlroy won the 2011 British Open last month, and the 11th ranked player in the world, Charl Schwartzel (who is 26), is the 2011 Masters champ.

So here's the question: Are today's younger players that much better than their youthful predecessors, or is their emergence in recent years more a function of Woods' off-course problems and lingering knee issues?

"The quality of these youngsters now, you definitely have to say is a significant percentage better than the last era of youngsters," CBS golf analyst and six-time major winner Nick Faldo said during a Thursday conference call.

But Faldo recognizes that it's more complicated than that.

"Before it was almost a foregone conclusion (that Tiger would win)," he said. "Now Tiger, as we've seen on a few occasions, hadn't been able to finish it off. No. 1, he's got to get himself into contention Sunday afternoon. He's still got to find out whether his game is good enough to finish it off.

"And I think that has had a big knock-on effect for these youngsters over the last couple of years. They've recognized that Tiger's definitely lost his aura right now and they kind of are saying to themselves 'Tiger has an awful lot on his plate, I don't need to worry about it.'"

Faldo's colleague, CBS golf analyst David Feherty, isn't yet ready to write Woods off.

"Let me put it to you this way: if Tiger Woods' knee gets better and he starts to play well, good luck to everybody else," he said. "Because when he plays well nobody else can win. And I haven't seen anybody, whether it's Rory McIlroy or anybody else, who played golf to the level Tiger Woods was playing before the last couple of years. … So if he plays well again, he'll win again, and he'll win by big margins again. I really believe that."

There's no disputing that the younger players are consistently putting up better scores and winning more tournaments than they were at any other point in the last 10 years. But is that because of Woods? We don't mean that they're now more successful because of Tiger's absence. We mean that many of today's best young players were elementary and middle schoolers when Woods was in the midst of the Tiger Slam. They were no doubt inspired by what Woods could do and how he could do it. Perhaps it motivated them at impressionable ages to work even harder on their games.

In that sense, Tiger's unparalleled success -- coupled with a confluence of unfortunate off-course events -- has played a part in his golfing demise, even if temporarily.

"In the past … everybody watched every move of Tiger from the minute he got onto the range until the minute he got on the leaderboard," said Faldo. "Everybody was giving him energy, they were watching him. Now (his competitors) know, 'hey, he's got enough on his plate -- off-course and the swing.'

"And I think these kids are a little bit more talented as well. I mean, the quality of golf that Rory McIlroy is playing, Jason Day is playing, Manassero -- don't forget (Matteo) Manassero, my goodness, he's 18 and a winner in Europe."

Manassero is currently the 31st-ranked player in the world. Just ahead of him at No. 30? Tiger Woods.

Faldo might be onto something.

Posted on: August 2, 2011 11:16 am
Edited on: August 2, 2011 11:25 am
 

Tiger Woods' new shoes at Firestone: Nike FREE

Posted by Will Brinson



Tiger Woods is back on the comeback trail. Again. This run will feature the former No. 1 golfer in the world playing at Firestone's Bridgestone Invitational as well as the PGA Championship in two weeks. (And, if he really needs the FedEx Cup points, a stint in Greensboro at the Wyndham Championship.)

It will also feature a new caddy, Byron Bell. And some new shoes! Tiger's heading back on the trail this time wearing a prototype golf shoe inspired by the FREE technology that Nike recently introduced.

You can see the shoe above and, frankly, it looks different than any golf shoe I've ever seen a professional golfer wear. That's primarily because they don't look as rigid as most golf shoes (though that rigid nature is usually what provides the stability needed for golfers who are standing still while swinging), and almost have a crosstrainer feel to them.

"This will help give Tiger greater stability as he addresses the ball," Tobie Hatfield, a design Director at Nike, said. "The freedom of movement that natural motion technology delivers will also allow more power to be released through the swing rather than through the body – which can happen when
your feet are too static."

Tiger mentioned that he uses the FREE technology -- 'a natural motion technology that is designed to mimic and conform tot he natural motion of the foot,' according to Nike -- in his training shoes and that led to him asking Hatfield to design a golf shoe that would work on the course.

Whether it works -- and whether Tiger is able to storm back onto the PGA Tour's leaderboard remains to be seen. But you can bet that if he does perform to Tiger-like standards in the next few weeks, there'll at least be some folks interested in his new shoes.

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Posted on: July 12, 2011 3:16 pm
Edited on: July 13, 2011 6:31 am
 

Report: Lawyer says Tiger never got PEDs from Dr.

Posted by Ryan Wilson

When Golf Channel announced over the weekend that Tiger Woods would make a special announcement Monday morning in an exclusive interview, there was speculation that he would discuss his relationship with Anthony Galea, the Toronto physician who once counted Woods as a client, and who pleaded guilty last week to bringing misbranded drugs into the United States.

Instead, the announcement was that his agent was joining a new company (apparently, the initial report of actual news was erroneous).

But Tiger could have used the opportunity to again defend himself from charges that Galea may have supplied him with performance-enhancing drugs, something Rod Personius, who represents Galea's former assistant Mary Anne Catalano, did Monday night. In an email to the New York Daily News, Personius said, "I tell you categorically that Tiger did NOT receive either banned or performance enhancing drugs when treating with Dr. Galea."

Woods admitted earlier this month that Galea, who doesn't have a license to practice medicine in the United States, had previously treated him at his Florida home, but denied that he ever took performance-enhancing drugs. Galea has also treated Alex Rodriguez, Jose Reyes and Carlos Beltran.

"Tiger willingly spoke to the authorities and cooperated fully," Woods' agent, Mark Steinberg, said in an email to the Associated Press in late June. "It was confirmed that because he did nothing illegal, he is not the subject of any criminal investigation. Because there is an ongoing investigation involving others, there will be no further comment." According to the Daily News, at a news conference in April just before the Masters, Woods said the feds had contacted Steinberg about Galea and pledged his "full cooperation."

Woods will miss the British Open, which begins Thursday, as he continues to recover from a knee injury that also kept him out of the U.S. Open last month.
Category: Golf
Posted on: July 12, 2011 12:54 pm
Edited on: July 13, 2011 12:16 am
 

2011 British Open odds: Rory McIlroy big favorite

Posted by Will Brinson

This is the week of the British Open in Sandwich, England -- you can follow all of the deliciousness at our British Open homepage -- and that means it's time to examine the odds, courtesy of BoDog, for various players to win the only foreign golf tournament that people care about major of the year.

As one might expect, Rory McIroy is a ridiculously prohibitive favorite, clocking in at 13/2. Compared to Luke Donald and Lee Westwood at 11/1, that makes him Tiger Woods-like, which should inspire plenty of "he's not Tiger yet" stories once McIlroy comes up short in his bid for a second-straight major.

Martin Kaymer follows at 22/1 and Sergio Garcia is a surprise entry at the top of the favorites at 28/1 (it's worth noting I've seen him even lower elsewhere, which seems insane, even if Sergio's "more inspired" or whatever). Steve Stricker, fresh off a recent win, is also at 28/1, and momentum's never a bad thing in golf.

2011 British Open Coverage

Phil Mickelson makes an appearance at 40/1, which is the level of odds where "guys with a big enough name value but have no real shot at winning" usually appear. Joining him are Padraig Harrington, Retief Goosen, Matt Kuchar and Charl Schwartzel. For what it's worth, that's probably pretty good value for Lefty, even though he's historically struggled at the British -- he's just too good a player to be given 40/1 odds.

There are some nice values later down the line, including Adam Scott at 50/1, Brandt Snedeker at 100/1, Webb Simpson/Anthony Kim/Camilo Villegas at 150/1.

If you're feeling particularly spicy, you can go all-in on Rory playing like he did during the final round of the Masters and take him at 9/1 to miss the cut (1/25 that he makes it, which is free money, theoretically, but hard to earn).

Tom Watson's a fun bet to take at 4/1 for the best senior, considering his recent success across the pond.

And, frankly, I LOVE Lee Westwood at a 2/1 prop bet to finish in the top-five. That's what he does.

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com