Tiger Undergoes Arthroscopic Knee Surgery

By Associated PressApril 15, 2008, 4:00 pm
The U.S. Open figured to be the closest to a sure thing for Tiger Woods in the majors this year, but maybe not anymore.
 
Two days after his quest for a Grand Slam fizzled at the Masters, Woods had arthroscopic surgery on his left knee for the second time in five years and will miss at least four weeks while he recovers.
 
The announcement, which Woods made Tuesday night on his Web site, was a surprise to everyone except those around him.
 
Hes been having a lot of trouble, swing coach Hank Haney said. He doesnt talk about stuff like that. He doesnt want to use excuses, you know? I dont think it affected his play. It affected his practice a little bit.
 
The surgery was performed in Park City, Utah, by Thomas Rosenberg, who also operated on Woods left knee in December 2002. Woods also had surgery in 1994 on his left knee to remove a benign tumor.
 
I made the decision to deal with the pain and schedule the surgery for after the Masters, Woods said on his Web site. The upside is that I have been through this process before and know how to handle it. I look forward to working through the rehabilitation process and getting back to action as quickly as I can.
 
But he will not be able to defend his title in two weeks at the Wachovia Championship. And he most likely will miss THE PLAYERS Championship the week after, one of only three non-majors he has never missed since turning pro. Provided rehab goes as expected, Woods hopes to return at the Memorial on May 29.
 
The U.S. Open begins June 12 at Torrey Pines, where Woods has won six times in the Buick Invitational. Such is his dominance on the cliffside course north of San Diego that when he opened with a 67 on the South Course this year, a caddie standing behind the 18th green remarked, He just won two tournaments with one round.
 
Indeed, Woods went on to an eight-shot victory in his 2008 debut, the first of four straight victories this year.
 
But it was not necessarily a pain-free affair.
 
Tiger has been experiencing pain in his knee since the middle of last year, and when he had it looked at by his doctors, arthroscopic surgery was recommended, said Mark Steinberg, Woods agent at IMG. Tiger has played through the pain in the past, but knew it would be better for him to have the procedure done as early as possible.
 
Steinberg said the surgery repaired cartilage damage. The 2002 surgery drained fluid from around the anterior cruciate ligament and removed a benign cyst.
 
Woods was limping and wincing toward the end of the 02 season, and it was not surprising to find out he had surgery that kept him out two months, most of that over the holidays.
 
This time, it only made sense upon reviewing the past nine months.
 
Woods stumbled and grimaced ever so slightly at Southern Hills last August in the PGA Championship, when he chipped in for birdie behind the eighth green in the final round and backpedaled for a fist pump. In the final two PGA TOUR events, in Chicago and Atlanta, he occasionally would press his left foot against a cooler, presumably to stretch his knee.
 
But it sure didnt affect his golf, not even at the Masters, where he finished three shots behind Trevor Immelman.
 
He hit 14 greens in regulation on Sunday, Haney said. Hard to say it was the knee.
 
Woods won the Bridgestone Invitational and PGA Championship in consecutive weeks, then tied for second behind Phil Mickelson at the Deutsche Bank Championship. That was his last loss until late March, the longest winning streak of his career, which covered five PGA TOUR events, the Dubai Desert Classic on the European Tour, and his unofficial Target World Challenge in December.
 
I knew he was going to do something this year, Haney said, referring to surgery. I just didnt know when.
 
Woods has a remarkable track record when returning from a long layoff. After the 02 surgery, he won three of his first four events, including an 11-shot victory at Bay Hill.
 
This will be the second time in two years, however, that he missed a chunk of time between the Masters and the U.S. Open. He sat out nine weeks in 2006 to cope with the May death of his father, not returning until the U.S. Open at Winged Foot. He missed the cut for the only time in a major since he turned pro.
 
Torrey Pines is more familiar turf, even if the setup for the U.S. Open will be vastly different. Woods won the Buick Invitational this year for the third straight time, and he also won there as a junior.
 
In the meantime, his absence is a blow to the Wachovia Championship and to THE PLAYERS Championship, regarded as the fifth major.
 
Of course, were disappointed when Tiger is unable to compete in a PGA TOUR event, commissioner Tim Finchem said on the TOURs Web site. There is really never a good time for an athlete'especially one of Tigers caliber'to take weeks off from competition during the season. But his health concerns have to come first.
 
Of greater concern might be the fact Woods has gone through surgery twice on the same knee in five years. He has looked immortal at times on the golf course, already winning 64 times on the PGA Tour and 13 majors, second only to Jack Nicklaus.
 
Could this slow the pursuit?
 
Woods won 30 times and five majors since his last surgery, and Haney expects nothing less.
 
This is something hes already used to, Haney said. He deals with stuff incredibly, like you would expect him to.
 
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    Chamblee: Like Tiger in '13, Mickelson should've DQ'd self

    By Golf Channel DigitalJune 19, 2018, 2:46 pm

    Two days after Brooks Koepka left Long Island with the U.S. Open trophy, the third-round antics of Phil Mickelson are still garnering plenty of discussion.

    Mickelson became a lightning rod of opinion after he intentionally hit a moving ball on the 13th green Saturday at Shinnecock Hills, incurring a two-shot penalty but not a disqualification. In the aftermath, he explained that he made a conscious choice to take the penalty to avoid playing back and forth across the crispy putting surface, and he tied for 48th after a final-round 66.

    Speaking Tuesday on "Morning Drive," Golf Channel analyst Brandel Chamblee shared his view that Mickelson would have been well-served to disqualify himself ahead of the final round. He also compared it to Tiger Woods' incident at the 2013 Masters, when he took an incorrect drop and, like Mickelson, received a two-shot penalty but not a disqualification.



    "I think Tiger, at least it's my opinion that his year would have been less distracting if he had done so," Chamblee said. "And I think the same of Phil Mickelson. If he had withdrawn from the championship and said, 'Look. This is a little sketchy. It didn't play out the way I thought. I've given it some thought and it's in the best interest of the championship that I withdraw.'"

    Chamblee added that Mickelson's antics were "really distracting" on a day filled with drama as the USGA lost control of course conditions, noting that Mickelson and playing partner Andrew "Beef" Johnston were the only tee time where both players failed to break 80 despite the difficult conditions.

    But having had time to review the situation and having surveyed a number of peers, Chamblee is as convinced as ever that Mickelson made a mistake by showing up for his final-round tee time.

    "What Phil did, I haven't run into a single person that hasn't said he deserved to be disqualified," Chamblee said. "Under any interpretation, a serious breach - if gaining an advantage is not a serious breach, I don't know what is. And he clearly said he was gaining an advantage and doing it for strategic reasons."

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    Norman to pose in ESPN's 'Body Issue'

    By Grill Room TeamJune 19, 2018, 2:05 pm

    Professional golfers have, from time to time, appeared in ESPN's "Body Issue," which features athletes strategically posed in the nude. The list includes: Belen Mozo, Carly Booth, Gary Player, Camilo Villegas, Sandra Gal, Christina Kim, Anna Grzebien, Suzann Pettersen and Sadena Parks.

    And now, Greg Norman.

    Modesty has never been an issue for Norman, who has an affinity for posing without a shirt (and sometimes without pants) on his Instagram account.

    He joins a list of athletes, in this year's edition, ranging from professional wrestlers (Charlotte Flair) to Olympians (Adam Rippon) to WNBA stars (Sue Bird). Click here for a full list of the athletes to appear.

     

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    DJ listed as betting favorite for The Open

    By Will GrayJune 19, 2018, 2:00 pm

    With the U.S. Open officially in the books, oddsmakers quickly turned their attention to the season's third major.

    Minutes after Brooks Koepka holed the winning putt to successfully defend his title at Shinnecock Hills, the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook published its first set of odds for The Open. Jordan Spieth, who opened at 14/1, will defend his title as the tournament shifts to Carnoustie in Scotland for the first time since 2007, when Padraig Harrington defeated Sergio Garcia in a playoff.

    Joining Spieth at 14/1 is 2014 Open champion Rory McIlroy, but they're both listed behind world No. 1 Dustin Johnson. Johnson, who was a runner-up at the 2011 Open at Royal St. George's and just finished third at the U.S. Open, opened as a 12/1 betting favorite. Koepka, now a two-time major winner, is listed at 20/1 alongside U.S. Open runner-up Tommy Fleetwood.

    Here's a look at the first edition of odds, with The Open just five weeks away:

    12/1: Dustin Johnson

    14/1: Jordan Spieth, Rory McIlroy

    16/1: Justin Rose, Rickie Fowler, Justin Thomas

    20/1: Brooks Koepka, Tommy Fleetwood, Jon Rahm

    25/1: Jason Day, Henrik Stenson, Tiger Woods

    30/1: Sergio Garcia, Patrick Reed, Hideki Matsuyama

    40/1: Phil Mickelson, Branden Grace, Paul Casey, Alex Noren, Marc Leishman

    50/1: Adam Scott, Louis Oosthuizen, Tyrrell Hatton

    60/1: Matt Kuchar, Patrick Cantlay, Bryson DeChambeau, Ian Poulter, Francesco Molinari, Rafael Cabrera-Bello, Matthew Fitzpatrick

    80/1: Tony Finau, Zach Johnson, Thomas Pieters, Daniel Berger, Xander Schauffele, Bubba Watson, Shane Lowry

    100/1: Charl Schwartzel, Webb Simpson, Brandt Snedeker

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    Golf Channel, Loch Lomond Partner on Claret Jug Tour Ahead of 147TH Open

    By Golf Channel Public RelationsJune 18, 2018, 9:35 pm

    Award-Winning Independent Scotcb Whisky Sponsoring Tour to Select U.S. Cities; Will Include Special Tastings and Opportunities for Fans to Engage with Golf’s Most Storied Trophy

    Golf Channel and Loch Lomond Group are partnering on a promotional tour with the Claret Jug – golf’s most iconic trophy, first awarded in 1873 to the winner of The Open – to select U.S. cities in advance of the 147TH Open at Carnoustie Golf Links in Scotland. Loch Lomond Whisky’s sponsorship of the tour further enhances the brand’s existing five-year partnership with the R&A as the official spirit of The Open, initially announced in February.

    “We are proud to partner with Golf Channel to support this tour of golf’s most iconic trophy,” said Colin Matthews, CEO of Loch Lomond Group. “Whisky and golf are two of Scotland’s greatest gifts to the world, and following the news of our recent partnership with the R&A for The Open, being a part of the Claret Jug tour was a perfect fit for Loch Lomond Group to further showcase our commitment to the game.”

    “The Loch Lomond Group could not be a more natural fit to sponsor the Claret Jug tour,” said Tom Knapp, senior vice president of golf sponsorship, NBC Sports Group. “Much like the storied history that accompanies the Claret Jug, Loch Lomond’s Scottish roots trace back centuries ago, and their aspirations to align with golf’s most celebrated traditions will resonate with a broad range of consumers in addition to golf fans and whisky enthusiasts.”

    The tour kicks off today in Austin, Texas, and will culminate on Wednesday, July 11 at the American Century Championship in Lake Tahoe one week prior to The Open. Those wishing to engage with the Claret Jug will have an opportunity at one of several tour stops being staged at Topgolf locations in select cities. The tour will feature a custom, authentic Scottish pub where consumers (of age) can sample Loch Lomond’s portfolio of whiskies in the spirit of golf’s original championship and the Claret Jug. The Claret Jug also will make special pop-up visits to select GolfNow course partners located within some of the designated tour markets.

    (All Times Local)

    Monday, June 18                    Austin, Texas              (Topgolf, 5:30-8:30 p.m.)

    Tuesday, June 19                    Houston                      (Topgolf, 5-8 p.m.)

    Wednesday, June 20               Jacksonville, Fla.        (Topgolf, 6-9 p.m.)

    Monday, June 25                    Orlando, Fla.               (Topgolf, 6-9 p.m.)

    Wednesday, July 4                 Washington D.C.        (Topgolf, 5:30-8:30 p.m. – Ashburn, Va.)

    Monday, July 9                       Edison, N.J.                (Topgolf, Time TBA)

    Wednesday, July 11               Lake Tahoe, Nev.       American Century Championship (On Course)

    Fans interacting with the Claret Jug and Loch Lomond during the course of the tour are encouraged to share their experience using the hashtag, #ClaretJug on social media, and tag @TheOpen and @LochLomondMalts on Twitter and Instagram.

    NBC Sports Group is the exclusive U.S. television home of the 147TH Open from Carnoustie, with nearly 50 live hours of tournament coverage, Thursday-Sunday, July 19-22. The Claret Jug is presented each July to the winner of The Open, with the winner also being given the title of “Champion Golfer of the Year” until the following year’s event is staged. The Claret Jug is one of the most storied trophies in all of sports; first presented to the 1873 winner of The Open, Tom Kidd. Each year, the winner’s name is engraved on to the trophy, forever etched into the history of golf’s original championship. It is customary for the Champion Golfer of the Year to drink a favorite alcoholic beverage from the Claret Jug in celebration of the victory.