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Tiger Woods Update: “I want to play professional golf again”

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In a blog post on his website on Wednesday, Tiger Woods said he “unequivocally” wants to play professional golf again following his spinal fusion surgery, and that he hasn’t “felt this good in years.”

In April, Woods surprised the world by announcing a fourth back surgery, except this time instead of a minimally-invasive surgery like the previous three, it was a spinal fusion. “You mention the word ‘fusion,’ and it’s scary,” Woods admits in his recent blog post.

But judging by his sentiments on Wednesday, the surgery was successful and his outlook is positive — not only for his well-being but in terms of getting back to competition.

“As for returning to competitive golf, the long-term prognosis is positive,” Tiger writes. “My surgeon and physiotherapist say the operation was successful. It’s just a matter of not screwing up and letting it fuse. I’m walking and doing my exercises, and taking my kids to and from school. All I can do is take it day by day. There’s no hurry.

“But, I want to say unequivocally, I want to play professional golf again.

“Presently, I’m not looking ahead. I can’t twist for another two and a half to three months. Right now, my sole focus is rehab and doing what the doctors tell me. I am concentrating on short-term goals.”

Woods has no timeline for when he will tee it up again, but he does “like Golden State to win the NBA Championship.” It’s good to hear Woods is on the road to recovery and in good spirits.

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33 Comments

33 Comments

  1. harley

    May 26, 2017 at 6:15 pm

    HOW OR WHY WOULD ANYONE ‘HATE” SOMEONE !!! SAD.

  2. JThunder

    May 26, 2017 at 5:53 pm

    The problem with Tiger’s lap-dog fanbase is that they – especially those in front of cameras – distract from so much of what is ACTUALLY going on in golf. There is so much happening, so many great players to watch, but the ominous cloud of “when will Tiger return, ‘move the needle’ and save us all” hangs like so many other media-hyped absolutist platitudes. Tiger is closer to flat-lining than moving the needle – career-wise – whether you love him, hate him, or don’t care about him.

    • Missing the Point

      May 26, 2017 at 7:38 pm

      You cant refer to a “lap-dog” fanbase in a post suggesting that he doesn’t “move the needle”. That’s completely incongruous.

  3. Darrin

    May 26, 2017 at 11:07 am

    Even if it does heal properly, the ability to practice enough to compete at a high level, not to mention, travel, practice rounds, pro-AM’s more practice and then (hopefully) 4 rounds of golf……
    I just don’t see it happening, playing tour golf is hard on the body, but after spinal fusion, I just don’t think it’s possible to get your game in shape and maintain it.

  4. Darryl

    May 26, 2017 at 2:55 am

    Isn’t this just his monthly “I’m still here” message for his sponsors/backers/fans. Just keeping the brand in the spotlight. I don’t think he’ll play at the very top level again. If it wasn’t Tiger, surely the surgeon would be telling him to keep flexible, avoid unnecessary heavy lifting and rest up whenever possible? The problem for top level professional sports people these days is the rewards are so vast and, yes, the egos so expansive, that there is pressure on all sides to get them healthy *enough* to carry on.

    I’m not an orthopedic surgeon, nor do I play one on TV, but surely if he was to go through this cycle of play-strain-surgery-rehab again, he must be running the risk of compromising his mobility later in life? I was also wondering, given the inexplicable short game woes that beset him during his last couple of comebacks, could that be symptomatic of accumulative damage from numerous surgeries on the spine, causing problems with sensation and brain/muscle communication? It wouldn’t cause too many apparent issues at full speed, but on slow swing finesse shots it might be different. Again, I’m not a medical professional.

    I understand his desire, but I think it’s a case of the spirit being willing, but the flesh (or the bone) being just too spongy and bruised to continue.

    • Surgeon

      May 26, 2017 at 7:35 pm

      Your theory on his short game woes definitely confirms that you aren’t a surgeon.

  5. Gary Player

    May 25, 2017 at 10:33 pm

    Give me my putter back!

  6. square

    May 25, 2017 at 8:52 pm

    Take your time, come back when you have a chance to make a real come back. I would love to watch another run. Good luck!

  7. Desmond

    May 25, 2017 at 7:38 pm

    From Mayo Clinic – does not sound encouraging at the end : Spinal fusion is surgery to permanently connect two or more vertebrae in your spine, eliminating motion between them.

    Spinal fusion involves techniques designed to mimic the normal healing process of broken bones. During spinal fusion, your surgeon places bone or a bonelike material within the space between two spinal vertebrae. Metal plates, screws and rods may be used to hold the vertebrae together, so they can heal into one solid unit.

    Because spinal fusion surgery immobilizes parts of your spine, it changes the way your spine can move. This places additional stress and strain on the vertebrae above and below the fused portion, and may increase the rate at which those areas of your spine degenerate.

  8. AceW7Iron

    May 25, 2017 at 4:46 pm

    I was berated 5 years ago when I saw the writing on the wall and posted it in a blog but the truth is there for all who want to take the red pill…Jack has as much a chance of winning a PGA event as TW going forward. Its not “only” that his spine is a fragile string pieced together with duct tape…Its the alarming speed at which his short game abandoned him. If he had never shown the chipping/putting yips the % would be greater of at least competing again but with that out in the open? Not happening…

  9. Devilsadvocate

    May 25, 2017 at 6:49 am

    Lol when you hate tiger SO MUCH you don’t believe anyone else could actually be a fan. Tiger played the best golf that was ever played! You don’t think MAYBE he might still have a few fans?

    • JThunder

      May 26, 2017 at 5:47 pm

      Jack Nicklaus still has a lot of fans. But he’s not going to win a PGA Tour event again because of it.

  10. Devilsadvocate

    May 25, 2017 at 6:43 am

    Lol when your hatred for TW is so strong you don’t believe his fans exist… Tiger Woods played the best golf anyone has ever played… MAYBE not everyone is as full of hatred as you are buddy

    • Tiger Woods

      May 25, 2017 at 10:40 pm

      Now back to talking about me. I have to stay relevant.

  11. Bobbyeggroll

    May 24, 2017 at 6:17 pm

    Just needs some reps after he activates his glutes and he MAY make a cut! Tiger is still Tiger and many will watch. I hate the guy and even I watch!!

  12. ooffa

    May 24, 2017 at 5:29 pm

    Ya, I want to play professional golf also. We both have the same chance. None!

  13. new stuff!!

    May 24, 2017 at 5:18 pm

    so many Debbie Downers.
    go pregame to slow jamz, eat seafood in Oklahoma, mix camo,
    get spinal fusion, let it fuse, take your kids to school, rehab up.
    you do you.

    • Huh?

      May 25, 2017 at 11:11 am

      Can someone please translate this for me?

      • LIHacker

        May 25, 2017 at 1:44 pm

        Strong am I with the Force, but not that strong – yoda

  14. Tazz2293

    May 24, 2017 at 4:11 pm

    Sorry Eldrick. You may play again at great risk to your health and life going forward but you will never be “Tiger” again.

    Relax, live life, enjoy your weekday rounds with friends. There is more to life than golf. You no longer need the money, nor can you compete with the young guys anymore.

    Go enjoy life dude.

  15. Phil

    May 24, 2017 at 3:43 pm

    Whatever Tiger says, do the opposite.

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Tour Photo Galleries

10 interesting photos from Monday at the Zurich Classic

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GolfWRX is live from the 2018 Zurich Classic at TPC Louisiana, were, among other things, a giant three-legged crocodile roams.

Now in it’s second year, the tournament’s unique two-man team format has attracted a wealth of top talent, including 10 of the top 14 golfers in the OWGR. We’re on the scene snapping bag pictures, and have WITB looks at Matt Jones and Roberto Diaz, in addition to a general gallery from the TPC Louisiana range.

Let’s dig in.

Matt Jones doesn’t need his name embroidered on his headcovers: tape and a marker will do just fine, thanks

Last week, Faaaabel the Goat. This week, someone who would eat Faaabel

Roberto Diaz: Brand agnostic

Wesley Bryan’s Taco Bell(t) lives

Homemade putting aid or soon to be seen on a Golf Channel infomercial (or both)?

UDI with a side of lead

Shaft bags: Assemble!

Roberto Diaz Fourteen RM wedge

What more do you need in life?

A bouquet of Circle T putter covers

Check out our photos from Monday below!

Monday’s Galleries

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Discussion: See what GolfWRX Members are saying about the photos in our forums

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Monday’s Photos from the 2018 Zurich Classic

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GolfWRX is live from the 2018 Zurich Classic at TPC Louisiana (par 72; 7,425 yards), designed by Pete Dye with consultants Steve Elkington and Kelly Gibson.

The Zurich Classic is a unique event on the PGA Tour because it’s not an individual stroke-play event. Instead, the format consists of two-man teams playing best-ball on Thursday and Saturday, and alternate-shot on Friday and Sunday.

Last year, Cameron Smith and Jonas Blixt won the event after four playoff holes against Kevin Kisner and Scott Brown. The Smith/Blixt duo will be back to defend their title, and the Kisner/Brown pairing will be back avenging their loss.

Other notable pairings in the field include Daniel Berger/Gary Woodland, Wesley Bryan/Jon Rahm, Patrick Reed/Patrick Cantlay, John Daly/Rory Sabbatini, Jason Day/Ryan Ruffels, David Duval/Jim Furyk, Tony Finau/Daniel Summerhays, Sergio Garcia/Rafa Cabrera Bello, J.B. Holmes/Brand Snedeker, Matt Kuchar/Bubba Watson, Louis Oosthuizen/Charl Schwartzel, Sean O’Hair/Jimmy Walker, Pat Perez/Jason Dufner, Justin Rose/Henrik Stenson, Jordan Spieth/Ryan Palmer, Justin Thomas/Bud Cauley and more!

Check out our photos from the event below!

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Discussion: See what GolfWRX Members are saying about the photos in our forums

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Tour News

Tour Rundown: Moriya Jutanugarn and Andrew Landry win their first titles

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It was a week of firsts on two of the world’s major professional tours. Moriya Jutanugarn claimed her first LPGA title in an impressive manner, while 2016 U.S. Open surprise Andrew Landry seized control in Houston to inscribe his name on the winner’s trophy for an initial time. Elsewhere, a pair of underdogs upset the favorites at the Champions Tour’s Missouri affair, while two veterans added additional titles to their resumes in Europe and on the Web.Com tour. It’s an interesting brew in this week’s cauldron, so let’s give it a stir and see what we taste in this week’s Tour Rundown.

Landry holds off resurgent trio to claim Houston Open

Andrew Landry led that U.S. Open at Oakmont after day one, and hung around the top of the leader board until the fourth day. When his name resurfaced at this week’s Tour stop, few were certain he could hold off a resurgent Zach Johnson, the two-time major winner. Well, few other than Zach Johnson thought Landry might pull it off.

How Landry locked in

From the 10th hole on Friday, through the same hole on Sunday, Landry made zero bogeys. He had 13 birdies in that stretch, on a course that gives a few up, but not in buckets. That 36 hole run of brilliance, including birdies on Sunday’s first three holes, staked Landry to an advantage that he would not relinquish. For the entire week, only four bogeys dotted his scorecards, and two of those came on Thursday. Landry’s putter was hot all week, and his driving game was laser-accurate. The sum total: welcome to the winner’s circle, Mr. Landry.

Click here to see the clubs Landry used to win the 2018 Valero Texas Open

Who made a run?

It wasn’t Johnson. Iowa’s favorite son hasn’t won since the 2015 British Open, although his game has shown its old fire of late. Johnson couldn’t find a groove on day 4, making as many bogeys in that round as Landry did all week. In the end, Johnson had a top-5 finish, amid signs that another victory may not be far in the offing. Sean O’Hair had the low round (66) of the day, and that magic was enough to boost him to a second-place tie with young Trey Mullinax, who followed a Saturday 62 with a notable 69 to rock steady. Jimmy Walker, finally recovered from a bout of illness, had the day’s 2nd-lowest score of 67, and he moved all the way to 4th spot.

Mighty Moriya holds off Korean trio for first tour title

Moriya Jutanugarn of Thailand has been close before. She has seen little sister Ariya hoist victory awards before. On Sunday, it was her turn. Jutanugarn and Marina Alex were two of the leader with no title to their credit, heading into the closing 18 holes. While the key to victory still eludes the young American, it was Jutanugarn’s turn to triumph.

What Moriya discovered on Sunday

Actually, she dug deepest on Saturday. The older sibling opened round three with a double bogey, stood 3-over on the day after six holes, and appeared to be sinking. The ship’s wheel steadied with two birdies and hole-out eagle coming home, and then it began the final day with four birdies and no bogeys in the first 15 holes. A late bogey served only to add faux drama, as Jutanugarn calmly closed the deal for victory the first.

Park, Young and Yeon can’t win this case

Reading a bit like a law firm, Inbee Park, Jin Young Ko and So Yeon Ryu made their runs at Moriya. Inbee had a bogey at the turn, and needed perfection on Sunday. She didn’t get it, so a tie for second was in the offing. Ko might have had the best opportunity at day’s start, but a 2-over outward nine took her too far off pace for a 3-under inward half, to provide recovery. She also came second, at 10-under. Ryu put an opening bogey behind with four birdies through 12 holes, but could not go deeper over the closing stretch. Her fourth-place finish was her best of 2018.

Levy wins for third consecutive year on European Tour

France’s Alexander Levy nearly has a five-year win streak. His first two tour titles came in 2014. He skipped 2015, but hasn’t missed in the subsequent years. His work in Morocco this week added up to a one-shot win over a literal blast from the past, Spain’s Alvaro Quiros. Eight golfers finished within three strokes of the top spot, adding drama to the finish at Royal Dar-Es-Salaam.

Nothing spectacular leads Levy to win

There were no great streaks of brilliance, no runs of multiple birdies, for the 28-year old. All that he did, efficiently, was make enough birdies to stay ahead of his pursuers. After bogey at the antepenultimate hole on Sunday, Levy responded with a dart at the par-three 17th, to re-establish his lead. The win was the fifth of his career.

See the clubs Levy used to win

Oh so close for Oh so many

Let’s begin with Quiros. The Spaniard, compared with Dustin Johnson (for his length off the tee) in his early years, has been adrift. Sunday was his best chance in forever to secure a tour title. His first 16 holes were a tangle of bogeys and a pair of birdies. The Iberian closed admirably, with birdies at the final pair, to claim solo second, one back of Levy. Also close were Mikko Illonen (tied for third with three others at 7-under) and England’s Andy Sullivan, one more back at 6-under, in a tie for seventh.

Two more for the road: Axley wins on Web, while Broadhurst/Triplett claim Legends

Eric Axley would have preferred to win his 3rd professional event in glorious fashion. He’ll take a rain-shortened title at the North Mississippi Classic, his second career Web.Com title and his first title of any sort in 12 years. Waaaay back in 2006, Axley won the very same Houston Open (see above) contested this week on the PGA Tour, and a bit of success was predicted for the left-hander. Success, as we know, doesn’t come to all hands, and Axley was able to birdie his final two holes on Saturday to stake a one-shot advantage. Tied for second were the USA’s Willy Wilcox, Columbia’s Sebastian Munoz, and Korea’s K.H. Lee.

Triplett and Broadhurst birdie 1st playoff hole for victory

The rules for the Bass Pro Shops Legends of Golf are slightly simpler than those of field hockey, which means that they aren’t very simple. Both courses in use boast par-3 holes alone, but each has a different number of holes, so numbers on the scoreboard are meaningless. With the two Spaniards (Olazabal and Jimenez), the defending champs (Franco and Singh) and two major champions (Lehman and Langer) in the mix, the undervalued pairing of Kirk Triplett (he of the hat) and Paul Broadhurst (he of the …) were not anyone’s favorites to emerge. And here we are.

No one seemed bent on making any heroic moves on Sunday, so it came down to which teams would find their way. Lehman/Langer joined the eventual winners at the 9th hole. Triplett played the hole to perfection: tee shot into bunker, bunker shot into hole, thank you very much. No birdie putts were holed, and the title belonged to the unlikely pairing of Kirk and Paul.

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