PARAMUS, N.J.– He used his driver just twice, which might explain why he hit 13 of 14 fairways and 15 of 18 greens. Those are off-the-charts ballstriking numbers, a pretty good formula for shooting 65, and if you're Tiger Woods, it's the best round of golf you've played all year at a time when you desperately needed it.
Before we call him cured, however, we should ask to see more. Woods teed off in the first group Thursday, so nobody found the old-school ballyard at Ridgewood in a softer, more defenseless state. If his opening round at the Barclays could not have gone better, Friday's 12:10 tee time should reveal whether that 65 was an aberration or a long-awaited return to business as usual.