KIAWAH ISLAND, S.C. – Amid claps of thunder and a torrential downpour – heck, at one point it even began raining in the interview room – Tiger Woods addressed the media Tuesday at the 94th PGA Championship, his final chance this year to end more than a four-year winless drought.
Among other things, Woods expounded on parity in golf, the softness of Kiawah Island’s Ocean Course, the genius of Pete Dye and if, like Phil Mickelson, he would consider becoming a co-owner of his favorite sports team.
The highlights from Woods’ Tuesday news conference:
• On how Kiawah will play this week: “It’s soft out there. The ball is not picking up mud, which is nice. The fairways are perfect; the greens are perfect. It’s just going to be a touch on the long side because it’s not really rolling out. If we play it all the way back, it’s just going to be a big ballpark.”
• On his pursuit of Jack Nicklaus’ record of 18 majors: “I figure it’s going to take a career. Jack didn’t finish his until he was 46, so if you go by that timetable, I’ve got 10 more years. Forty more majors is a lot. I’ve got plenty of time.”
• On why there have been 16 different major winners in the past 16 majors: “Golf is getting deep. There are so many guys with a chance to win. The margin is getting smaller.”
• On whether he enjoys architect Pete Dye’s courses: “He makes you think, which I like, instead of just going out there and hitting a golf ball. ... If you miss your spots, you’re going to be penalized severely.”
• On how he views his 2012 season: “I think I’ve progressed this year over my last couple of years, and I’m very pleased with what I’ve done, being healthy and being able to play and practice properly and implement the things that Sean (Foley) wants me to do. This is the way I can hit the golf ball. This is the way I can play. It’s nice to be able to do the things that I know I can do.”
• On his chances at this year’s PGA, and how he feels about his game: “The last couple of years my game was not where it’s at right now. It’s totally different – physically my game is way different than what it was last year. It’s been nice to be able to practice after each round, to have that option. That wasn’t the case last year. My game has improved because of it, and here we are.”
• On golf being in the 2016 Olympics: “Well, since we haven’t done it in a very long time, it’ll be something else to be able to represent our country like that in the Olympic Games.”
• On whether he would consider becoming a co-owner of his favorite sports team in the future: “Absolutely. I just need a lot more money. My teams are the Lakers, Dodgers and Raiders, so I’ve got to play really well.”