Tiger Woods Watch Intensifies


The din increases by the day. Everybody, it seems, has an opinion or a thought about when Tiger Woods will or wont return from knee surgery. And this weeks Comebacker is all over the noise.
Without further ado:

Ken writes: Arnies tournament will be Tigers first and only before Augusta. One month after new baby; Great deal of past success; and he would be too vulnerable for match play. Hitting high driver draws with a much toned-down energy level from the top. Chipping and putting at a career best and sawed-off punch shots at an all-time accuracy level. Five wins this year plus three majors plus eight top 10s.

The Comebacker: Could you please be a little more specific?


Mac writes: It seems like it's been years since Tiger has played. Your article 'Predicting Tiger's Return' was just like a drink of water after not having any for a week. The Tour is a joy to watch when he is in the field.

The Comebacker: Actually, its only been 234 days since we last saw Tiger in competition. But whos counting?

Wade writes: Easy, there, hon. Tiger will be back soon enough for you. Maybe he can cure cancer beforehand.
The Comebacker: Am not really comfortable with being called hon by somebody named Wade. Not, as Seinfeld always used to say, that theres anything wrong with that.

Notor writes: Oh let us all hope and pray that Tiger will return soon and bless the golf world with his presence. Without him there playing, you folks have no one to swoon over and be totally obsessed about. Has the PGA tour played any tournaments since he left? I haven't kept up with the Tour since Tiger left. I just hope he comes back soon so I can go back to watching golf on TV again. Oh let us pray that Tiger will tell us when he will be back. Do you think he will? I worry that he won't and so do you. Please find out when and tell us since you are close to Tig.
The Comebacker: What, youre not obsessed with, and swooning over, Kent Jones?.....Oh, and when Tig lets me know when hes coming back, youll be the first to know.

Frank writes: One factor might be against Tiger's return for the Match Play, and that is the sheer strain of the event. Tiger doesn't play just to play; he wants to win whenever he plays, and a potential 36-hole final and one other 36-hole day on the way to that might be more than he can handle at this stage. I'm betting he shows up to the event, as Accenture is one of his sponsors, but doesn't play. We shall see. My guess for his first return event is the Bay Hill tournament, where he has had great success in the past, and which is also in his Orlando backyard, meaning no travel would be necessary.
The Comebacker: Couple of things: First of all, Tiger aint showing up at Match Play if he aint playing, I dont care how much Accenture pays him. But good point, Frank, about the two 36-hole days if he keeps winning. Of course if he thrashes opponents with impunity (remember, he beat down Stewart Cink 8 and 7 in last years final), he wont have to play a full 36 on those two-round days. I still think he will be at the Match Play. But the WGC-CA at Doral in mid-March is not a bad candidate either for his return because it has no pro-am.

Jim writes: This guy is human, and seeing him standing around bending his leg at Sherwood GC last December and still making a face (like this hurts). I predict that if he's not playing in a tournament by April he won't be back until 2010. I wouldn't take a chance on one of the most used (stressed) parts of the body in a golf swing before it was completely healed. It's not like he has to go on unemployment if he doesn't golf, he's a good person and I don't think his competiveness will make him come back to early and hurt his body. My two cents hope I am wrong.
The Comebacker: We all hope youre wrong. But Tiger knows as well as anybody what an inexact science recovering from knee reconstructions can be. He talked Wednesday about his getting his golf ball count (the number of practice balls he can hit in a day without being sore the next day) back up to where he wants it to be. Its not there yet. But listening to him, it sounds like hes getting close.

Richard writes: Dont look for Tiger until the U.S. Open. The media is in a frenzy with anticipation. Tiger is not motivated by the media. The birth of his son will delay his reentry ' as well as watching Tim Finchem trying to control his apoplexy. I actually enjoyed watching the weekend match. Kenny Perry deserved to win. For my money, Tiger can wait.
The Comebacker: The birth of his SON? What, are you, Elins obstetrician? And, by the way, the day Tim Finchem cant control his apoplexy is the day Mac OGrady becomes the new PGA Tour commissioner.

Ed writes: : Enough: I read half way through the article and my body parts started to hurt. All of the speculation in the world will not bring him back any faster, and when he returns we will all see if he has made changes to protect his knee. It's not even interesting to keep the Tiger watch. When I tune into the Golf Channel on a Thursday and I see him, then I will know he is back.
The Comebacker:Take two aspirin and call your doctor in the morning.


G.L. writes: I know all you so called writers get excited every time Tigers name is mentioned but it has been a lot of fun watching others play golf. God help you when Tiger decides to retire or spend more time with the family. I am not sure you will find anything to write about.

The Comebacker: If God chooses to help me when Tiger retires, I will settle for just still being alive.


Bill writes: I know you guys are frothing at the bit to see old Tiger back, but it has been great to be able to see other golfers on TV. Hope he stays away another nine months.

The Comebacker: Lets see, if Tiger stays away for another nine months, he should be back just in time for..the Childrens Miracle Network Classic.

Email your thoughts to Brian Hewitt