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Stricker hopes neck therapy returns feeling to finger

Steve Stricker
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PEBBLE BEACH, CA - FEBRUARY 14: Dustin Johnson holds the trophy after winning the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am at Pebble Beach Golf Links on February 14, 2010 in Pebble Beach, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)  - 

NAPLES, Fla. – Steve Stricker still has numbness in the middle finger of his left hand but hopes therapy will fix the cause – a neck injury that has plagued him the past year.

Stricker is playing this week’s Franklin Templeton Shootout at Tiburon Golf Club.

“The fact that there’s still numbness in that finger is a sign there’s still pressure on the nerve,” Stricker said after Wednesday’s pro-am.

Stricker is three weeks into a six- to eight-week physical therapy regimen designed to alleviate the problem. He plans to play the season-opening Hyundai Tournament of Champions Jan. 6-9.

In August, Stricker withdrew after two rounds of the BMW Championship with weakness in his left hand. An MRI showed a herniated disk in his neck, a problem Stricker said has bothered him to varying degrees since December 2010. 

While Stricker says he’s steadily improving, he’s concerned about aggravating the neck injury.

“I just don’t want it to get worse again,” he said.