"I'm not in a great place mentally. I can't really say much, guys. I'm just in a bad place mentally." – Rory McIlroy, immediately after withdrawing in the middle of his second round at the Honda Classic. After an opening-round even-par 70, McIlroy was 7 over through eight holes on Friday morning. On his ninth hole of the day, the world No. 1 hit an approach shot into the water and then promptly walked off the course.
"I sincerely apologize to the Honda Classic and PGA Tour for my sudden withdrawal. I have been suffering with a sore wisdom tooth, which is due to come out in the near future." – McIlroy, in a statement released about an hour after he withdrew from the Honda Classic, citing a "sore wisdom tooth," as the reason.
"I’ve been through it a long time. But, also, this is a slightly different era, as well. You’ve got to think about it more before you say something or do something." – Tiger Woods, on the instantaneous spread of news through Twitter and blogs. McIlroy’s bizarre mid-round WD from the Honda Classic and subsequent backlash spread like wildfire on the internet.
"People don't understand. Most of the people that are commentating or analyzing don't understand the game of golf, so I didn't have a problem with it." – Woods, again, on the challenge of working through swing problems with the feeling of the whole world is watching – something McIlroy will have to adjust to.
"I'm a great fan of Rory's, but I don't think (walking off the course) was the right thing to do." – Ernie Els, McIlroy’s playing partner, after his second round at PGA National. When informed that the reason was a sore wisdom tooth, he added "He obviously couldn't do it after nine holes anymore. Toothache, it's not fun I guess."
"Even Rory looked at me yesterday and he was like, ‘What are you doing here?’ I’m a golf fan, so why not go out and watch the best golfer in the world play?" – Shane Lowry, who was in the gallery this week at the Honda Classic watching his close friend McIlroy, one week after beating the world’s top-ranked player in the WGC-Match Play. Lowry failed to Monday qualify for the Honda, so instead paid a $690 entry fee and played a Golfslinger.com mini-tour event on Thursday.
"I was 1 over at the time, and if that ball is not playable from where it's at, where I caught was pretty far back and I would have had to have dropped. I couldn't even get an angle in the first cut and had to drop in the primary and had to lay up and didn't get that up‑and‑down – looking at a six, 3 over, [but] all of a sudden I flip it, make par there and birdie the next." – Woods, again, explaining his decision to play out of the water during the first round of the Honda Classic. Woods’ spectacular par turned out to be a blip on an otherwise mediocre showing at PGA National.
"Somebody could have stepped right by there and been bit. He blended in perfectly with the grass; wasn't but about 18 inches long, but he was big enough that he could have bit you and hurt you pretty bad." – Boo Weekley, who calmly scooped up a snake with the end of his driver and deposited it into a canal during the first round of the Honda Classic. Marshals were growing frantic figuring out a way to deal with the poisonous water moccasin.
"The guys were itching to put up times, but it’s a good thing they weren’t doing that. As competitive as we all are . . . The name of the game was to keep from putting a Ferrari into a wall and injuring ourselves." – Justin Rose, after taking part in a Ferrari racing experience with Rickie Fowler and Ian Poulter on Tuesday at the Palm Beach International Raceway.
"She’s not feeling well. She has withdrawn; she does have flu-like symptoms, but, to be clear, she has not been hospitalized and there is no diagnosis of malaria." – David Livingston, Natalie Gulbis’ agent, responding to reports that she had been diagnosed with malaria after she withdrew from the HSBC Women’s Champions event in Singapore.
Contributions from writers and editors on the Golf Channel Digital team.
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