Woods on LeBron's return to Cleveland: 'I can understand'


AKRON, Ohio – For a guy who never won his hometown tournament at Riviera CC before taking it off his schedule, Tiger Woods said he empathized with LeBron James’ decision to return home in hopes of winning an NBA championship.

“I can understand him coming back here and wanting to be at home and wanting to do it in front of the home fans,” Woods said of the basketball star who recently left the Miami Heat to once again play for the Cleveland Cavaliers. “Cleveland hasn't, unfortunately, won championships in a very long time, and it would be pretty huge if he was able to do it.”

Like most sports fans, Woods didn’t see the news coming.

WGC-Bridgestone Invitational: Articles, videos and photos

“I was probably as surprised as anybody when that all went down,” he explained Wednesday. “We were overseas when that all was happening, I believe. I was in, I believe, Switzerland at the time. We were all surprised.

“As a player who plays an individual sport where there's no home affiliation, it's different. We don't play half our season at home. That's just not part of our sport. … For him to have grown up here and obviously play here for his first seven years, I can see where that could be an attraction to come back. He already accomplished what he wanted to accomplish. He set out to win championships, and he did.”