Tiger Enjoying Honeymoon

By Associated PressOctober 11, 2004, 4:00 pm
Tiger Woods always said he had to win a major for it to be considered a great year, but he might have found an exception last week when he got married in Barbados.
'As far as off the course, it is a great year,' Woods said Sunday from his yacht, where he and new bride Elin Nordegren have been diving on their honeymoon since their marriage at Sandy Lane Resort in the Caribbean.
Tiger Woods and Elin NordegrenSounding more relaxed than ever, Woods is in no hurry to resurface.
His next tournament is supposed to be the Funai Classic at Disney, which starts Oct. 21 about 10 minutes away from his home in Florida, but Woods did not say whether he was going to play.
'I'm having so much fun on my honeymoon, I don't know if I'll be back or not,' he said during a 30-minute conference call. 'It depends on how much fun I'm having out here and whether I need to get back. It's so nice to be on the boat. We're diving every day, being by ourselves, away from everybody. It's a lot of fun.'
Woods got engaged the day before Thanksgiving at a South African game reserve. He said they settled on Oct. 5 as their wedding date in the middle of summer, and despite living under constant scrutiny, they had no trouble keeping it a secret until published reports surfaced in Ireland a week before the wedding.
'We didn't tell anyone until the last minute,' he said.
Woods invited about 120 family and friends, including former NBA stars Michael Jordan and Charles Barkley, and PGA Tour players Mark O'Meara and John Cook. Two other tour players couldn't make it - Notah Begay because of a back injury, and Charles Howell III, who was playing in Las Vegas to try to get into the Tour Championship.
He did not divulge any details from the wedding, held at the lavish resort owned by Irish friends Dermot Desmond and J.P. McManus. He also declined to say where he and his bride have been diving - or when he would return.
Woods has played Disney every year since he turned pro, winning in 1996 to qualify for the Tour Championship in just seven tournament, and winning in '99 when he closed the season with four straight victories.
Woods has won only once this year, at the Accenture Match Play Championship in February, and is scheduled to play five more events the rest of this season - Disney, the Tour Championship, the Dunlop Phoenix in Japan, the Skins Game and his Target World Challenge in December.
Woods held the conference call to announce the 16-man field for the Target World Challenge, which will be played Dec. 9-12 at Sherwood Country Club in Thousand Oaks, Calif.
The 12 players from the world ranking are Woods, defending champion Davis Love III, Vijay Singh, Padraig Harrington, Stewart Cink, Jim Furyk, Chris DiMarco, Chad Campbell, Kenny Perry, Todd Hamilton, Miguel Angel Jimenez and Stephen Ames.
The four sponsor exemptions are Jay Haas, Fred Couples, Colin Montgomerie and John Daly.
Woods doesn't expect to be any different inside the ropes how that he has a ring on his finger.
'It's not going to change the way I play golf,' he said. 'I've been living with Elin. ... We've been happy together the last two years. Nothing has changed in that regard. Just because you're married doesn't change the way a relationship is, it just changes the way it's viewed from the outside.
'I just hope I can get the ball in the hole a little faster.'
Woods tied for ninth at the American Express Championship in Ireland, his final tournament as a bachelor. It was his eighth consecutive top 10 in regular tour events, although he ended his second straight year without a major.
Still, Woods says his game is getting closer.
'The last few tournaments, I've gone up another notch,' he said. 'I'm showing some great signs for the future. Things are coming together. I don't have to worry about as many things on my (swing) checklist.'
Copyright 2004 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Getty Images

After Further Review: Tiger's return comes at perfect time

By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 22, 2018, 2:19 am

Each week, GolfChannel.com takes a look back at the week in golf. Here's what's weighing on our writers' minds.

On the current state of golf as Tiger Woods returns to competition ...

Less than four days before Tiger Woods returns to official competitive golf for the first time in a year, Jon Rahm, the new second-ranked player in the world, won on the PGA Tour and Rory McIlroy made an impressive 2018 debut on the European Tour (T-3).

Not since Ben Hogan, Arnold Palmer and Jack Nicklaus crossed paths at the 1960 U.S. Open has there been so many superstars all poised for big seasons, with world No. 1 Dustin Johnson having already won this year and Jordan Spieth and Justin Thomas both coming off stellar seasons.

It’s a good time for golf. - Rex Hoggard

On Tommy Fleetwood's continued success ...

There have been scores of talented European players whose skills didn’t translate to the PGA Tour … and maybe, in a few years, Tommy Fleetwood will prove to be no different.

He sure looks like the real deal, though.  

His title defense in Abu Dhabi – on the strength of a back-nine 30 in windy conditions – was his third title in the past 12 months and 11th top-10 overall. A few of those have come in majors and World Golf Championship events, too, which led the reigning Race to Dubai champion to accept PGA Tour membership for this season.

Beginning at Riviera, he plans to play exclusively in the States through May, then reassess for the rest of the year. Hope he sticks, because he’s a fun personality with tons of game. - Ryan Lavner

Getty Images

Rahm passes Spieth to become world No. 2

By Nick MentaJanuary 22, 2018, 1:25 am

With his win Sunday at the CareerBuilder Challenge, Jon Rahm picked up his second PGA Tour victory and moved to No. 2 in the FedExCup points standings.

He picked up one more No. 2, too.

The 23-year-old Spaniard passed Jordan Spieth to move to No. 2 in the Official World Golf Ranking, behind only Dustin Johnson.

In 19 months, since June 2016, Rahm has rocketed from No. 776 in the world to No. 2, thanks in part to his low divisor, his number of events played.

Asked after his playoff victory over Andrew Landry to discuss his rapid ascent up the world rankings, Rahm was almost at a loss.

“It's hard to believe to be honest, passing Jordan Spieth,” he said. “That's a three-time major champion. I only have two wins. He's got 10-plus, right? It's again – I've said it many times – I never thought I was going to be at this point in my life right now.”

Rahm may only have two PGA Tour titles, but this is his fourth worldwide win in the last year, dating back to last season’s Farmers Insurance Open. He also took the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open and the DP World Tour Championship on his way to claiming the European Tour’s 2017 Rookie of the Year Award.

Dating back to the start of last season on the PGA Tour, Rahm has racked up 12 top-10s, three runner-ups, and two wins.

He will head to Torrey Pines next week ready to defend for the first time.

Getty Images

Brady compares self to Woods after winning AFC title

By Jason CrookJanuary 22, 2018, 1:05 am

Tom Brady and Tiger Woods are two of the all-time greats in their respective sports ... a fact that is not lost on the five-time Super Bowl winning quarterback.

Fresh off leading the New England Patriots to a AFC Championship victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars, Brady was asked about winning the game despite a cut on his throwing hand - which made national news heading into the matchup.

His response invoked the name of a certain 14-time major winner, something that would be tough to pull off, if not for the fact that he is, you know, Tom Brady.

“I think it's kind of arrogant to say it bothered me when we had a pretty good game, so I wouldn't say that," the 40-year-old told reporters after the game. "It's like when Tiger Woods said, ‘That was my C game’ and he won the tournament."

Tiger Woods winning with his "C game" may be a distant memory for golf fans, but no matter what game he brings, his next chance to win comes next week at Torrey Pines during his official comeback to the PGA Tour.

Brady has a shot at his sixth Super Bowl title in two weeks. The Patriots would probably benefit from him bringing a little better than his "C game" as well.

Getty Images

Rahm beats Landry in playoff to win CareerBuilder

By Nick MentaJanuary 22, 2018, 1:00 am

Jon Rahm birdied the fourth extra hole Sunday to defeat Andrew Landry in a playoff, win the CareerBuilder Challenge and move to No. 2 in the Official World Golf Ranking. Here’s how things played out in overtime at PGA West:

Leaderboard: Rahm (-22), Landry (-22), John Huh (-20), Adam Hadwin (-20), Martin Piller (-20), Kevin Chappell (-19), Scott Piercy (-19)

What it means: This is Rahm’s second PGA Tour win and his fourth worldwide victory in the last year, dating back to last season’s Farmers Insurance Open. Rahm took the early lead Thursday with an opening 62 and after rounds of 67-70, he started the final round two back. On Sunday, he made five birdies without dropping a single shot on the intimidating Stadium Course. In the clubhouse at 22 under, Rahm watched as Landry made birdie on 18 to force a playoff.

Rahm missed birdie putts that would have ended the tournament on the final hole of regulation and on each playoff hole. Finally, on his fourth trip down 18 of the day, his birdie bid found the cup. With the victory, Rahm passes Jordan Spieth to move to No. 2 in the Official World Golf Ranking, trailing only Dustin Johnson. He enters next week at Torrey Pines looking to defend for the first time.

Best of the rest: A two-time Web.com winner playing his second full season on the PGA Tour, Landry shot 68 Sunday, making birdie on the 72nd hole to force extras. Once Rahm finally made birdie on the fourth playoff hole, Landry's putt to extend slid by on the right edge. This is Landry's best career finish on the PGA Tour. Had he won, he would have secured full Tour status through the 2019-20 season and earned invites to the Masters, Players, and PGA Championships.

Round of the day: Sam Saunders fired an 8-under 64 to register this best finish of the season, a tie for eighth at 18 under. The reigning Web.com Tour Championship winner was 9 under par through 12 holes before making bogey at 13 and parring his way into the clubhouse.

Biggest disappointment: Overnight leader Austin Cook was eyeing his second win of the season but never contended. The RSM champion carded two double bogeys Sunday en route to a 3-over 75, dropping him from the 54-hole lead to a tie for 14th.

Shot of the day: Rahm's putt to win:

Quote of the day: "One of us had to do it and either one of us would have been a well-deserving champion." - Rahm on his playoff victory over Landry