Punch Shot: Does Tiger win a major in 2015?

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It's been six year since Tiger Woods last won a major. Will he get No. 15 in 2015? GolfChannel.com's writer weigh in.

By JASON SOBEL

I don’t think Tiger will win a major in 2015 … which probably means you should pencil him in for a historic run.

I’ve been asked this same question at the beginning of each of the previous six years, and I’m pretty positive that I’ve predicted Woods will win a major every time. Of course, that makes me 0-for-6.

So, good news, Tiger fans: This year I’m not picking it. I don’t think he gets No. 15 in ’15. Call it a combination of having a new swing “consultant”; time and injuries taking their toll; and the not insignificant fact that there are so many other elite players capable of winning majors.

Would it surprise me if he won one? Not at all. In fact, it wouldn’t totally shock me if he won two or three. I’ve been saying for years that it was going to happen. Based on that track record of poor predictions, he should be inching closer to Jack Nicklaus in no time.


By RYAN LAVNER

For the good of the game I hope I’m wrong, but at this point I’d say no.

There are just too many question marks: Is he healthy? Can he practice? Will his new swing produce good results? Can he fix his short game? What will happen to his putter on a major Sunday?

His body and swing looked great at the World Challenge, but his short game was a disaster. That was probably equal parts rust and technique, but the issue was alarming.

His best chances to win a major will come at the Masters and the British Open. Woods has finished outside the top 6 just once at Augusta since 2005, while he has fond memories at the Old Course, where he won in both 2000 and ’05.

It’s not a stretch to think that Tiger could win once, maybe even twice in 2015. But a major? On Jan. 7, with so many unknowns, it doesn’t seem likely.


By REX HOGGARD

It’s not going to be easy nor does it seem likely to be particularly pretty, but Tiger Woods will finally turn the page in 2015 and secure major No. 15.

The most likely option will be his fifth green jacket in April at Augusta National. Although he hasn’t won the Masters since 2005, he’s posted seven top-10 showings since then, including last year’s tie for fourth place.

July’s journey to St. Andrews for the Open Championship is also a likely option considering that in his four Open starts on the Old Course he’s batting .500 with two victories (2000 and ’05).

But beyond familiarity and previous success at certain venues, Woods appears poised to end his Grand Slam drought because he’s healthy.

Forget about the new “swing consultant” or his dismal play in 2014, Woods’ decision to embark on a medically-induced hiatus – he’s played just four competitive rounds since last year’s PGA Championship – is why his major championship odds are looking better in ’15.

This is, after all, the same guy who won five times on the PGA Tour in 2013, which was not-so-coincidentally the last time Woods was able to largely avoid the disabled list.

After 39 hard years and against vastly deeper fields it won’t be easy, but the greatest player of his generation is still a major contender.


By RANDALL MELL

Yes.

With all he has achieved, it’s hard betting against Tiger Woods. Even now, with six years passing since he last won a major, you remember his ability to pull off the near impossible shot and his ability to win in impossibly large ways.

You can’t forget. You can’t forget him limping his way around Torrey Pines winning the ’08 U.S. Open and thinking he can overcome anything.

While it’s hard to imagine him dominating again, it’s not so hard to imagine him remembering how it’s done at Augusta National. It’s not so hard imagining him slipping into another green jacket. It’s not hard imagining confidence returning there and his swing and short game with it.

Augusta National, after all, is rich with remembering.