AKRON, Ohio – No sugar coating this: Tiger had just five pars on Sunday at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational; he had the same number of bogeys. Some thoughts on his Firestone swansong:
• Tiger said following a third-round 73 that he’d try to use Sunday’s trip around Firestone as a way to build momentum toward next week’s PGA Championship. After opening with back-to-back birdies, there wasn’t much to build on. He turned in 1 under and played his next five holes in 4 over on his way to his worst weekend on the South Course since he finished 75-77 in 2010.
• Starting the final round 11 strokes off the pace, Tiger said he had one goal on Sunday. “I was just trying to be as aggressive as possible and fire at everything,” he said. “It was either going to be 62 or 72 or something in the mid-70s. I was just going to be aggressive and see what happens.”
• An eight-time winner at Firestone, Tiger made qualifying for the last World Golf Championship on the South Course a goal this season. “I'm going to miss this place. I'm going to miss playing here, I'm going to miss the people,” he said. “I've had so many great memories and it's just sad that we're not coming back here anymore.”
• Tiger said he struggled to hit his putts hard enough, but it was his ball-striking that let him down. For the week he ranked 53rd, out of 71 players, in strokes gained: tee to green and hit just 5 of 14 fairways on Sunday.
• With a busy stretch of the schedule coming up for Tiger, he’ll play at least three of the next four weeks, he said rest is crucial; but he did sound as if he’ll be at Bellerive on Monday to start preparing for the PGA Championship. “We’ll see,” he said. “I'm done pretty early today, so I'll have the afternoon off. I'll probably get back after it tomorrow.”
• And finally, although the official ranking won’t be published until late on Sunday, he was tied for 31st after he completed his round which would likely keep him somewhere around 50th in the world.