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Jack on Tiger: 'He looked very healthy'

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PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. – Jack Nicklaus said he saw a lot of desire to play golf again in Tiger Woods when he welcomed Woods to his home while hosting U.S. Ryder Cup hopefuls Thursday night after the first round of the Honda Classic.

“He looked very good,” Nicklaus said Sunday in the media center at PGA National. “He looked very healthy, and he really misses playing.”

Nicklaus, 76, said he reiterated to Woods that while no player likes to see his own records broken, he didn’t want to see Woods deprived of the chance because of poor health. Woods, 40, is five major championship titles from breaking Nicklaus’ mark of 18.

“He says he was feeling good, and he was feeling great, and he was able to stand over a putt and chip now without having any leg pain and so forth,” Nicklaus said. “We didn’t really talk a whole lot about it ... He doesn’t have a timetable for returning or anything.

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“I think he’s pretty private about what his situation is, and I don’t blame him, because every time he opens his mouth, there’s nothing but articles written about speculation about Tiger.”

Nicklaus said he hopes Woods continues to make progress.

“So [I said] I wish you well, and I hope you get healthy, hope you get to play, hope you get out there as soon as you feel like you can play,” Nicklaus said. “I hope you do well.”