Tiger Talks About The Knee

By Brian HewittMay 14, 2008, 4:00 pm
The key question all along, as it relates to Tiger Woods post-Masters knee surgery and the state of his recovery going forward for the rest of his career, is this:
 
Will Woods left knee need periodic clean-ups to keep the health of the knee maintained? Or is this'the third operation on the knee'a sign that a deterioration has set in and that we cant predict how the knee will hold up as Woods advances into his 30s?
 
For the first time since the surgery in early April, Woods answered the big question this week. Sort of.
 
I said after the first surgery I probably wouldnt have another one, Woods said. Then after the second one, I said I wouldnt have another one. Now here I am having three. It is what it is. Its the nature of playing sports.
 
Sounds like Woods is resigned to more surgical procedures. And it already has been suggested that he will have to alter his rigorous training regimen to accommodate the knees need for less stress.
 
Annika Sorenstams orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Bruce Thomas, said he couldnt and wouldnt hazard a guess unless he was actually in the operating room. And Woods own doctors have kept most of the details private.
 
But Thomas did say the key was whether or not the three surgeries took place on the same part of the left knee. If they were in different areas of the knee, he said, the chances for Woods knee to regain and retain its normal strength are much greater.
 

EAST LAKE UPDATE
Speaking of recoveries, the planting date for the new greens at East Lake in Atlanta is set for two weeks from today. You may remember last year how badly stressed the greens there were when the players arrived for the TOUR Championship.
 
East Lake superintendent Ralph Kepple says, barring 'cloudy lousy' summer weather, the new mini-verde greens should be perfect by the time the players get there in late September for the FedExCup finale. Meanwhile East Lake will remain closed until then.
 
Mini verde is the same strain of Bermuda grass that was used to transform the putting surfaces at the Stadium course at TPC Sawgrass, home of THE PLAYERS.
 
'I definitely don't anticipate anybody shooting 60 this year,' Kepple said, referring to Zach Johnson's eye-popping third round score last year.
 

NO NIX ON STEVIE
Woods says he and caddie Steve Williams have grown closer as their professional relationship has continued. Often its the other way around for players and caddies.
 
I think we have very similar personalities, Woods said. Stevie is very competitive, very feisty and he always wants to win. People have gotten a glimpse of that, not only from caddying for me, but also all the dirt track racing he does back in New Zealand in his off weeks.
 
Were very truthful, very honest, very up front, and whatever is on our minds, we say it. Weve become like brothers, really. We can have the player-caddie relationship, we can switch it around in an instant and be great friends, and then have more of a brotherly relationship, and then switch right back to the player-caddie, all in a few minutes.
 
And that takes time, and thats happened over I think like 10 years now weve been together. That takes time to develop that, but I think over that time, I built just an inordinate amount of respect and trust for Stevie, not only what hes done for me on the golf course, but also off the golf course as well.
 

STREAK ENDS
When Ben Curtis 3-putted the 12th green last Friday at THE PLAYERS it was his first 3-jack in 374 holes. That was the longest streak on TOUR this year.
 

Email your thoughts to Brian Hewitt
 
Related Links:
  • Full Coverage - AT&T
  • GOLF CHANNEL Airtimes
  • Getty Images

    'The Golf Club 2019' adds Elvy to commentary team

    By Nick MentaJuly 19, 2018, 4:45 pm

    “The Golf Club 2019” is adding a new name to its commentary team.

    Broadcaster Luke Elvy will join returning announcer and HB Studios developer John McCarthy for the title's third installment.

    Golf fans will recognize Elvy from his recent work with CBS in addition to his time with Sky Sports, FOX Sports, TNT, PGA Tour Live and PGA Tour Radio.

    A 25-year media veteran from Australia, he now works in the United States and lives with his family in Canada.

    "Ian Baker-Finch was my right-hand man on Australian televison," Elvy told GolfChannel.com in an interview at the Quicken Loans National. "And Finchy said to me, 'What are you doing here? You should be with me in the States.’ He introduced me to a few people over here and that's how the transition has happened over the last five or six years."

    Elvy didn't have any prior relationship with HB Studios, who reached out to him via his management at CAA. As for why he got the job, he pseudo-jokes: "They heard the accent, and said, 'We like that. That works for us. Let's go.' That's literally how it happened."

    He participated in two separate recording sessions over three days, first at his home back in February and then at the HB Studios shortly after The Players Championship. He teased his involvement when the game was announced in May.

    Although he doesn't describe himself as a "gamer," Elvy lauded the game's immediate playability, even for a novice.

    “It’s exactly how you’d want golf to be,” he said.

    "The Golf Club 2019" will be the first in the HB series to feature PGA Tour branding. The Tour had previously licensed its video game rights to EA Sports.

    In addition to a career mode that will take players from the Web.com Tour all the way through the FedExCup Playoffs, "The Golf Club 2019" will also feature at launch replicas of six TPC courses played annually on Tour – TPC Summerlin (Shriners Hospitals for Children Open), TPC Scottsdale's Stadium Course (Waste Management Phoenix Open), TPC Sawgrass’ Stadium Course (The Players Championship), TPC Southwind (FedEx St. Jude Classic/WGC-FedEx St. Jude Championship), TPC Deere Run (John Deere Classic), and TPC Boston (Dell Technologies Championship).

    “I played nine holes at Scottsdale,” Elvy added. “It’s a very close comparison. Visually, it’s very realistic."

    The Golf Club 2019 is due out this August on PlayStation 4, XBOX One, and PC.

    Getty Images

    Expired visa, helicopter, odd clubs all part of Vegas' journey

    By Ryan LavnerJuly 19, 2018, 3:48 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Jhonattan Vegas thought someone was playing a practical joke on him.

    Or maybe he was stuck in the middle of a horror movie.

    Scheduled to leave for The Open a week ago, he didn’t arrive at Carnoustie until a little more than an hour before his first-round tee time Thursday.

    “Even if somebody tried to do that on purpose,” he said, “you couldn’t really do it.”

    The problem was an expired visa.

    Vegas said that he must have gotten confused by the transposed date on the visa – “Guessing I’ve been living in America too long” – and assumed that he was cleared to travel.

    No problem, he was told. He’d have a new visa in 24 hours.


    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


    Except the consulate in New York didn’t respond to his application the next day, keeping him in limbo through the weekend. Then, on Monday, he was told that he’d applied for the wrong visa. UPS got shut down in New York and his visa never left, so Vegas waited in vain for seven hours in front of the consulate in Houston. He finally secured his visa on Wednesday morning, boarded a flight from Houston to Toronto, and then flew to Glasgow, the final leg of a 14-hour journey.

    His agent arranged a helicopter ride from Glasgow to Carnoustie to ensure that he could make his 10:31 a.m. (local) tee time.

    One more issue? His clubs never made it. They were left back in Toronto.

    His caddie, Ruben Yorio, scrambled to put together a new bag, with a mismatched set of woods, irons, wedges and putter.

    “Luckily the (equipment) vans are still here,” Vegas said. “Otherwise I probably would have played with members’ clubs today.”

    He hit about 20 balls on the range – “Luckily they were going forward” – but Carnoustie is one of the most challenging links in the world, and Vegas was working off of two hours’ sleep and without his own custom-built clubs. He shot 76 but, hey, at least he tried.

    “It was fun,” he said, “even though the journey was frustrating.”

    Getty Images

    'Brain fart' leads to Spieth's late collapse

    By Rex HoggardJuly 19, 2018, 2:44 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – The closing stretch at Carnoustie has famously ruined many a solid round, so Jordan Spieth’s misadventures on Thursday should not have been a complete surprise, but the truth is the defending champion’s miscues were very much self-inflicted.

    Spieth was cruising along at 3 under par, just two shots off the early lead, when he made a combination of errors at the par-4 15th hole. He hit the wrong club off the tee (4-iron) and the wrong club for his approach (6-iron) on his way to a double bogey-6.

    “The problem was on the second shot, I should have hit enough club to reach the front of the green, and even if it goes 20 yards over the green, it's an easy up-and-down,” Spieth said. “I just had a brain fart, and I missed it into the location where the only pot bunker where I could actually get in trouble, and it plugged deep into it. It was a really, really poor decision on the second shot, and that cost me.”


    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


    Spieth continued to compound his problems with a sloppy bogey at the 16th hole, and a drive that sailed left at 18 found the Barry Burn en route to a closing bogey and a 1-over 72.

    The miscues were more mental, a lack of execution, than they were an example of how difficult the closing stretch at Carnoustie can be, and that’s not good enough for Spieth.

    “That's what I would consider as a significant advantage for me is recognizing where the misses are,” said Spieth, who was tied for 68th when he completed his round. “It felt like a missed opportunity.”

    Getty Images

    Perez: R&A does it right, 'not like the USGA'

    By Rex HoggardJuly 19, 2018, 2:28 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Pat Perez didn’t even attempt to hide his frustration with the USGA at last month’s U.S. Open, and after an opening-round 69 at The Open, he took the opportunity to double down on his displeasure.

    “They (the R&A) do it right, not like the USGA,” Perez said of the setup at Carnoustie. “They've got the opposite [philosophy] here. I told them, you guys have it right, let the course get baked, but you've got the greens receptive. They're not going to run and be out of control. They could have easily had the greens just like the fairway, but they didn't. The course is just set up perfect.”


    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


    Concerns at Shinnecock Hills reached a crescendo on Saturday when the scoring average ballooned to 75.3 and only three players broke the par of 70. Of particular concern for many players, including Perez, were some of the hole locations, given how fast and firm the greens were.

    “The U.S. Open could have been like this more if they wanted to. They could have made the greens a bit more receptive,” Perez said. “These greens are really flat compared to Shinnecock. So that was kind of the problem there is they let it get out of control and they made the greens too hard.”