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Steve Williams reveals the number of majors Tiger planned to win

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Steve Williams, Tiger Woods’ caddie from 1999 through 2011, has spoken and written about his former boss on a few occasions since the pair parted ways — most notably in his book “Out of the Rough.”

Rehashing their strained relationship is beside the point, but if you’re interested in the things Williams was most upset with Woods about, check out my 2015 breakdown of his book.

Anyway, Williams penned a piece for the Players Voice about Woods’ recent resurgence. Much of the piece is forward-looking. Williams believes Woods will win majors in 2019. However, there are other interesting morsels of note that could otherwise fall through the cracks.

Here are a few.

A notable 2008 U.S. Open quote

“That 2008 US Open was all about mind over body. I’d never seen Tiger in so much pain.”

“At one point in the second round he was visibly close to tears. He was a long way off the lead and I thought it was pointless to continue so I said to him, ‘Is it really worth it, Tiger?’”

“‘F— you,’ he replied. ‘I’m winning this tournament.’”

Why Tiger starts slow

“The other thing people noted about the PGA was the fact he was three-over par after just two holes on the first day and ended up losing to Koepka by two shots.”

“This is one trademark of Tiger’s game that I remember well. He often made average starts to tournaments. That’s because, like anyone who takes pride in what they do, Tiger gets very nervous at the start of an event and it shows.”

“He also knows all too well that you can’t win the tournament on Thursday but you can sure as hell lose it. That leads him to make a more conservative start to the tournament than some other players.”

The number of majors Tiger planned to win

“Back when we were working together we’d often have this conversation about how many majors he wanted to win. I believed that when he got to the target he wanted he would rack the cue – it’s just that we were always unclear on what that number would be.”

“Initially it was 20 and then he said one day, ‘No, Stevie, your favourite number is 21 and we’ll get to that’. I came back with: ‘No, you’re a great Michael Jordan fan, so why don’t we go for 23?’.”

Of course, Woods’ plans went up in smoke, as we know, to the extent that he never really expected to play golf again. It’d be interesting to hear if he, like Williams, believes he could one day hoist major trophy No. 19.

Williams full piece is well worth a read.

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2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. stephen finley

    Aug 30, 2018 at 11:50 am

    Well, you know. Things happen. I planned to win some myself, and then I didn’t.

    The problem with Woods isn’t that he didn’t win enough majors, but that he — like so much of the rest of fandom now — didn’t seem to understand there was more to being a champion golfer than hitting it well and shooting low scores. Character and behavior were always part of the game at its best. Now the way most people know about the game is as just another pro sport that you can (sort of) play yourself occasionally, with the same kinds of standards and expectations, or lack of them, as in other pro sports. The full experience of the game and what it can teach you about absolute honesty, self-control, regard for fellow competitors, understanding the game is always bigger than you are, etc., are lost on most people now in the “f— yeah!” (after a win) and “f— you if you don’t like my behavior, you adjust yourself to me” era. I can only hope that for at least a few people out there, that’s the way it still is for them, and that’s how they bring their kids up in the game. Maybe. If we’re lucky.

  2. MJ

    Aug 29, 2018 at 12:25 pm

    Yeah a 23-inch wide fire hydrant. You got it right, Steve

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19th Hole

Nicklaus: Tiger’s swing is better now than ever

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Jack Nicklaus is teeing it with his grandson, G.T., at the PNC Father/Son Challenge. As has been the case since, well, at least 1997, the Golden Bear was asked about the man closest to his record of 18 major championships.

Beyond weighing in on Woods’ win at the Tour Championship or whether he thinks Tiger has a shot at 18 majors, Nicklaus offered his perspective on Woods post-spinal fusion swing, and he likes what he sees…a lot.

“I think his swing is much better now than it ever was. The reason for that is Tiger was very much up and down with his head and I think that put a lot of pressure on his back.

“The fusion that he had, obviously was something he didn’t want but it was something he needed. … I didn’t think he would ever play golf as well as he’s playing.

“I never dreamed that he would play quite as well as he has and that the operation actually leveled out his head and leveled out his swing.”

High praise, indeed! What do you think about the 18-time major winner’s remarks, GolfWRX members?

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Looks like Little John Daly is a “Long John” as well

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John Daly’s 15-year-old son is again the talk of the PNC Father/Son Challenge. JD and LJD first teed it up in the event together in 2016, and Long John the Younger, with Loudmouth Golf attire that matches his father’s, has been a minor sensation ever since.

Oh, and he can absolutely rip it. Check out Skratch TV’s video from the range at the Ritz Carlton Golf Club in Orlando.

“Thank God I’ve got him on my team this week,” you can hear Daly the Elder say after his son’s missile.

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Proud papa.

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And if you doubt the kid has game and think this is mere puffery, consider he won the IJGA Invitational at Harbour Town last year, triumphing in a five-man playoff.

Or, you can check out this video of Daly talking about his son’s golfing prowess. (However, if you’re offended by a liberal use of the f-word, you may not want to do so)

The pair tee off with Retief and Leo Goosen at 9:36 a.m. tomorrow in the two-day, 36-hole competition. Angel Cabrera and Angel Cabrera, Jr. won the tournament last year.

 

 

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19th Hole

Adam “Pacman” Jones talks handicap, lowest score, shows off new clubs

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The trick-shot artist, golfing dynamo, and general internet phenomenon that is Matty sat down for a quick nine questions with veteran NFL cornerback Adam “Pacman” Jones, who plays to a 14 handicap.

Check out their conversation below.

Matty also took a peek at the fresh set of clubs in Jones’ bag. It looks like Matty, who is affiliated with Bridgestone Golf, has made sure the veteran cornerback has the company’s latest wares, including custom Tour B X-CB irons and custom KBS Tour shafts.

Hopefully, Matty will follow up with an Adam Jones WOTW (What’s on the Wrist). Holy Rolly, Pacman!

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