Tiger1

Image: Keith Allison/Flickr

Yes.

Last fall, I wrote about how The Tour just isn’t as interesting without Eldrick in the field. During the spring, I wrote a special article for The Armchair Golf Blog lamenting that same thought.

Yesterday illustrated why The PGA Tour is an entirely different animal when Tiger is playing. Spectacular shot after spectacular shot, Woods sizzled his way to a 65, taking The Memorial crown and telling the world that he’s completely back from injury and entirely ready to kick butt and take names at the upcoming U.S. Open.

Whether it was the ridiculously clutch shot on 18 or the one handed pitch out of the rough on 11, Tiger showed yet again why he is the greatest golfer—and one of the greatest athletes—the world has ever known.

At the risk of sounding like a fanboy, I’ll say you can put him up there with Ruth, Ali, Jordan, Aaron, Thorpe, Phelps…you name it. Woods rarely disappoints. He not only meets the hype; he exceeds it. He transcends sport.

Sure, he might not seem as socially-conscious as Ali or Aaron, or maybe he’s too buttoned-up and politically correct for some people—let’s face it, Woods is no Charles Barkley. But the man is the template in the golf world.

Let’s hope he’s playing into his 50s. Maybe he’ll be the first player to seriously forgo the Champions Tour and stay playing with the big boys all the time. Fifteen years from now, I could see Tiger doing that. Enjoy it while you can.

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