Tiger Woods didn't mince words when asked if he considered calling Sergio Garcia after "The Pulled 5-Wood Heard Around The World" at The Players Championship to finally make up, put their rivalry to bed and just "chill."
"No," Woods replied with a slight smile after a short pause (watch the video below).
Tiger Woods with Tiger Jam headliner Kid Rock in Las Vegas (Getty Images).
Tiger Woods' 15th annual Tiger Jam concert and fundraiser in Las Vegas over the weekend had everything -- Kid Rock, Chris Paul, a poker tournament with Doyle Brunson, Phil Ivey and Phil Hellmuth -- except a photo opportunity with Woods and girlfriend Lindsey Vonn. Robin Leach of the Las Vegas Sun has the details:
Try as I could, there were no photos of the duo arm-in-arm and cheek-to-cheek. I asked Tiger politely. He ignored me — looked straight through me like I was a ghost. Not one word from him. I asked his PR people, and they did try but were rebuffed.
Tiger made certain Lindsey was whisked into a stage-side dressing room in a phalanx of security bodyguards and kept away from the small contingent of photographers, including our contributing photographer Tom Donoghue. Lindsey was a guest at last year’s Tiger Jam before they began dating.
Leach said that Woods looked happy during the weekend event, which raises money for the Tiger Woods Foundation:
Tiger was in great spirits over the weekend despite his poker loss. It’s obvious to all that he’s happy and in love again with Lindsey, but why he keeps her hidden from photographers to capture a happy photo of the duo remains a mystery.
If it’s OK to smile with Kid Rock — and in past years Jon Bon Jovi, John Mayer and Keith Urban — I just can’t fathom why not Lindsey. Hopefully, though, with or without the engagement rumors , it will happen in due course.
Woods posted pictures from the event on his Facebook page.
Nicolas Colsaerts' match against Graeme McDowell went right down the drain.
On the par-4 10th hole at the World Match Play, the Belgian hit his tee shot over a concrete restroom and into the trees. An official on the scene made the surprise ruling that the building itself represented the nearest point of relief (no pun intended). After Colsaerts dropped near the toilet, he was given a free drop outside the restroom because the structure was classified as an immovable obstruction. He went on to make a par, halve the hole and eventually lose the match.
The USGA will announce its final decision on whether to ban anchored putting -- in other words, belly putter and long putters that are "anchored" against the body -- at a news conference Tuesday at USGA headquarters in Far Hills, N.J. The 8 a.m. press conference will be broadcast live on Golf Channel. The USGA will also provide a live webcast of the press conference here.
In November, the USGA and the R&A proposed a rule change to ban anchored putting strokes after three of the previous five major champions used either belly putters or long putters, including Keegan Bradley [right] at the 2011 PGA Championship. After the USGA and R&A proposed to ban anchored putting, Adam Scott won the Masters with a long putter in April. (The R&A -- the Royal & Ancient Golf Club -- administers the game outside the United States and Mexico.)
The proposed rule change has been controversial; the PGA Tour and the PGA of America have both told the USGA that they are against the proposed change. However, the European Tour, the LPGA and several prominent former and current players -- including Tiger Woods and Arnold Palmer -- support the ban.
In a written statement in November, the USGA executive Mike Davis said that anchored putting is at odds with the essence of the game:
“Throughout the 600-year history of golf, the essence of playing the game has been to grip the club with the hands and swing it freely at the ball,” said USGA Executive Director Mike Davis. “The player’s challenge is to control the movement of the entire club in striking the ball, and anchoring the club alters the nature of that challenge. Our conclusion is that the Rules of Golf should be amended to preserve the traditional character of the golf swing by eliminating the growing practice of anchoring the club.”
Supports of anchored putting have argued that the rule change is not fair to players who use anchoring, which has been legal for 30 years, that the ban would limit the enjoyment of recreational players, and that anchored putting is not an advantage.
"We weren't trying to hurt anybody," Davis said. "It's a divisive issue and it's been divisive ever since the long putter has been around. We're simply trying to clarify it and put it to bed."
If the USGA and R&A adopt the rule change, then it would most likely take effect in the next scheduled rules update: Jan 1. 2016. PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem has declined to say whether the PGA Tour would go along with the USGA and ban anchored putting on the PGA Tour.
Photo of Keegan Bradley at the 2013 Byron Nelson Championship (Getty Images).
Maybe Sergio was right. Maybe Tiger Woods really “isn’t one of the nicest guys on Tour.”?
The latest evidence comes from well-established Tour nice-guy Rocco Mediate, who, during a recent appearance on Golf Channel’s “Feherty,” recalled a Tiger memory from the 2009 Players Championship. At the time, Mediate was roughly a year removed from his playoff loss to Woods at the 2008 U.S. Open at Torrey Pines, so he thought he’d ask Tiger for a memento.
According to Mediate, he left in Woods’ locker a photo of the two of them from the playoff, along with a pin sheet from their fifth-round match. He also left a note, requesting an autograph and an inscription.
“Look, sign these for me, write something on there, and personalize it and then sign the pin sheet,” Mediate told David Feherty, summing up his note to Tiger. “Because I’m going to put them on my wall somewhere.”
Well, Mediate got the autograph, but that was it. As Rocco tells it, Woods returned the materials later that day, having signed the photo but without writing an inscription. The pin sheet came back to Rocco untouched.
Mediate says he threw everything in the trash.
“That tells the story,” Mediate said. “Why wouldn’t he ... just mess with me, and the sign my pin sheet, so I could put the damn thing on my wall and say, ‘I almost got the guy that day.’”
Mediate emphasized that he’s still a Tiger fan.
“I’ve been a big fan of Tiger since I met him,” he said. “I love the way he does his job. I don’t care what anybody thinks or anybody says; we ain’t gonna see this kid come about again.”
You get the feeling that Sergio Garcia -- among many others -- would be just fine with that.
We're not just talking simple jumping jacks and calf stretches. Oh, no. This is "The Most Interesting Golfer in the World," after all. Jimenez gets loose with his signature "little dancing moves," usually with his trademark cigar.
After Sergio Garcia complained about Tiger Woods pulling a club before Garcia had played his shot on the par-5 second hole of the Players Championship on Saturday, Woods said that a marshal had told him Garcia had already played his shot. One marshal on the hole told Sports Illustrated that he did not tell Woods that Garcia had played the shot, but another marshal told the Florida Times-Union that he did talk to Woods about Garcia’s shot, although he talked to Woods after – not before – Garcia played his shot. From the Florida Times-Union:
Two Players Championship marshals who are part of the walking escort team for Tiger Woods are disputing an account in Sports Illustrated of the incident involving Woods and Sergio Garcia during the third round last Saturday.
Garcia claimed that Woods distracted him during his second shot at the second hole when Woods pulled a fairway metal out of his bag to hit out of the left trees, drawing a response from the crowd.
Woods said he was told by a marshal that Garcia, on the far right side of the fairway, about 50 yards away and obscured from Woods’ view, had already hit before he selected a club. Replays have since shown that the crowd made noise when Garcia was over his ball, but not in his backswing.
Two Players marshals, John North and Gary Anderson, were quoted by SI as saying that Woods didn’t ask any marshals about Garcia's status, and none was given.
But two volunteers -- marshal Brian Nedrich and escort Lance Paczkowski -- told the Times-Union that they did communicate with Woods about Garcia's shot.
Both said the claims there was no communication between Woods and volunteers are wrong and said that Woods was only mistaken about the sequence of events.
“It is not true and definitely unfair to Tiger,” said Nedrich, who was a marshal at the second hole. “That’s because I was the one Tiger heard say that Sergio had hit.”
While Woods was mistaken in his post-round comments about when he was told about Garcia's shot, Woods was not being intentionally misleading, the volunteers said.
“It’s disingenuous to suggest that Tiger is a liar because he got a minor detail wrong,” Nedrich said. “Basically, he told the truth.”
“Tiger Woods did not lie,” Paczkowski said. “Was there a small mistake in what he remembered? Yes. But I don't think it rises to the level of lying.”
"The comments from the marshals in today's [Times-Union] story definitively show that Tiger was telling the truth about being told Sergio had hit," said Mark Steinberg, Woods' agent, in a statement. "I hope this demonstrates to some reporters the importance of accuracy and not jumping to misplace conclusions."
Woods had been No. 1 on the list since its inception in 2004 until last year, when he finished third behind boxer Floyd Mayweather and Woods’ old rival Phil Mickelson. In 2013, the resurgent Woods has overtaken Mickelson but is now fifth on the list, with an estimated $40,839,027 in income. Mayweather remains No. 1, followed by LeBron James, Drew Brees and Kobe Bryant.
SI determines income solely through salary, winnings, bonuses and endorsements based on players’ associations, tour records, online databases and media reports. (Golf earnings are from July 1, 2012 through April 21, 2013.)
Tiger is back -- he earned more than anyone on Tour over the past 12 months -- but sponsors have been slower to return. Woods’s current deals are with Nike, EA, Rolex, Kowa (a heat rub), Fuse Science, Upper Deck and NetJets. In the past two years various lists have put Tiger’s portfolio in the $50 million range; don’t believe them. Marketing experts say that even $33 million is generous, but no one really knows how much his deal with Nike is worth. (The best estimates put it at $20 million per year.) And now that Nike is using him in TV ads again (with the ascendant Rory McIlroy), you can bet the Swoosh sees fresh value in its biggest golf star. Phil Mickelson makes more in endorsements, but the 37-year-old Woods made double on the links.
Despite playing much better, Woods lost more than $20 million in endorsement than the previous year. (In 2012, Woods earned $54.5 million in endorsement income, according to SI.)
Mickelson, whose play has been uneven, still made more money off the course than Woods.
In golf (and tennis), more than in other sports, endorsement contracts are heavily rankings-based and full of performance bonuses. At 42, Mickelson isn’t winning as much, but he’s still a sponsor’s dream because of his likability. In an ad for arthritis medicine Enbrel (for which he likely earns $7 million a year), he’s decked out in sponsorships: KPMG on his visor, Barclays on the chest of his polo, Callaway on the sleeve.
Rory McIlroy, the third pillar of golf’s latest Big Three, was listed in the International 20, not the Fortunate 50, but his earnings would have easily placed him in the top 10.
The widely reported Nike deal is bringing McIlroy at least $20 million a year, but it’s also likely a rankings-based contract, full of many bonuses that Rory hasn’t earned so far. Nike took a huge, long-term gamble on him that doesn’t yet look so wise, but he’s got quite a while to prove himself worthy. And to be third in the world among active golfers for endorsement earnings, at age 23, that’s pretty impressive. Other brands that all came calling in the very recent months include Bose and Omega watches.
Chances are, your weekend wasn't as good as Bearden High School student Alex Notte's. The Special Olympics golfer from Knoxville, Tenn., attended his prom with some serious arm candy: 24-year-old LPGA beauty, Belen Mozo.
After meeting Mozo at the 2011 Wegmans LPGA Championship, Notte became such a big fan that he decided to take up the game himself. He now plays three times a week at Gettysvue Golf Club.
Notte enlisted the assistance of his older sister Arielle to help him craft a YouTube video so he could ask Mozo to be his date to prom by using sign language.
The power of social media propelled the video to Mozo's Twitter page, and she was able to clear her schedule to attend.
On the morning of the prom, Mozo hosted a clinic at Gettysvue to raise awareness and funds for Special Olympics golf in Tennessee.
After the clinic, Mozo and Notte had dinner together at Gettysvue before heading to the prom. Notte was nominated for prom king, and when he was named runner-up, the winner took off the crown to give it to Notte, but he refused to take it and returned it right away.
Sergio Garcia and Tiger Woods during the third round of the 2013 Players Championship.
Tiger Woods and Sergio Garcia had a misunderstanding on the par-5 second hole at TPC Sawgrass on Saturday that reignited the two golfers' longtime feud. However, the marshal who was following the group said Woods's explanation for his actions on the hole was not true, according to Sports Illustrated's Michael Bamberger. [See update below.]
In the third round, on the 2nd hole, Woods hit a poor tee shot into the left trees. García hit a better tee shot, on the right side of the fairway. If the players had been communicating properly, García and Woods, or their caddies, would have established an order of play. But there was nothing like that. García, playing out of turn but not able to see Woods, was disrupted as he started his swing by a modest cheer from the woods, where a large group of spectators had surrounded Tiger, forming a human V around his ball. The cheers were a response to Woods’s pulling a five-wood out of his bag, meaning that he was going to attempt an absurdly difficult recovery shot. García, after fatting his shot, turned his round chin in Woods’s direction and glared.
“It’s very simple,” García said during an NBC interview. “You have to pay attention to what’s going on because the other guy is hitting. You do something when you’re in the crowd, and the crowd is going to respond.”
Returning serve, Woods said, “The marshals, they told me he already hit, so I pulled a club and was getting ready to play my shot, and then I hear his comments afterward and it’s not real surprising that he’s complaining about something.”
Well, when they heard that remark from Woods, the marshals were surprised. One of them, Gary Anderson, said on Sunday, “He didn’t ask us nothing, and we didn’t say nothing. We’re told not to talk to the players.”
Anderson’s boss, John North, was the chief marshal for the first three holes. He stood over Woods’s ball to protect it from the throng and was five feet away when Woods played his shot. North has worked the tournament as a volunteer marshal for 30 years, he’s a graduate of the Naval Academy, he served in Vietnam, he’s a FedEx pilot and he donates his round on the Stadium course for being a volunteer to the Wounded Warriors project.
“Nothing was said to us and we certainly said nothing to him,” North said. “I was disappointed to hear him make those remarks. We’re there to help the players and enhance the experience of the fans. He was saying what was good for him. It lacked character.”
Hours later, his workweek done, North watched the tournament on TV in a military appreciation tent. “I hate to say it, but I was rooting for him,” North said of Woods. “It tears me apart. But when he’s winning..."
UPDATE:According to The Florida Times-Union, a different marshal at the second hole said that he told Woods that Garcia had hit after Garcia hit his shot. Brian Nedrich, a marshal at the second hole, said Woods was wrong about the time sequence -- Woods had already grabbed his club before the marshal told him Garcia had hit -- but that Woods did communicate with volunteers. “It is not true and definitely unfair to Tiger,” Nedrich said of claims that no marshal said anything to Woods about Garcia. “That’s because I was the one Tiger heard say that Sergio had hit.”
In a follow-up interview Wednesday morning, North said that, with an earpiece in one ear, it was possible that other officials had an exchange with Woods that he did not hear. He said he was beside Woods's ball as he prepared to play his shot but was as much as 20 feet away when Woods actually swung. He said his statement about "character" was based on his understanding that no marshal had said anything to Woods.
The folks over at Deadspin pointed out that "Get in the Hole!" guy took a break Sunday from being obnoxious to wish everyone a Happy Mother's Day. Nice.
I'm like most of you -- I think it's ridiculous for people to yell at golf tournaments, but, come on, when someone screams "Yabba Dabba Doooooo!" how do you not laugh?
And let's face it -- as long as there are TV cameras (and booze) around, someone's going to yell something. So we've compiled a list of do's and don'ts on yelling at golf tournaments. There's also a Hall of Shame category below, with examples of incidents that should get you thrown out!
What To Yell At A Golf Tournament
The gold standard. Short and sweet. Yelling something like this shows you're rooting for the player, and not just trying to get your 15 minutes of fame.
Any catch phrase from NBA Jam will work.
Honest or snarky? You be the judge ...
The nickname for Howard Stern producer Gary Dell'Abate, this one has the potential to replace "Get in the Hole!" and "Mashed Potatoes!" as the go-to phrase to yell.
Chewbacca Call Doing a good Chewbacca impression is hard, so if you can not only make that noise, but also do it loud enough to be heard on national TV, more power to ya.
What NOT To Yell
I first heard someone yell this at Doral a couple of years ago. It's somehow become the new "Get in the Hole!," which means it's time to stop using it.
Enough with the random food references! No, "Skittles!" ...
... "Ham and Cheese!" ...
... or "Sausage!"
Light The Candle!
I almost gave this the nod, it's so random and silly, and the guy does yell it with enthusiasm. Which is key. If you're going to yell random crap, at least yell it with authority!
No, no, no, no, no ... No random body parts!
Hall of Shame
Hey, Vijay, Go In The Water! Never openly root against a player, especially in their backswing. If you see someone do this, point them out to an official so they can be escorted out.
Get In The Hole!
The worst. It stopped being funny ... check that, it's never been funny, especially when you yell it after a guy tees off on a par 4 or par 5. And this is the worst offense right here. This woman A) thinks she's being funny, and B) records herself doing it!
Tiger Woods, You Suck!
This should also get you thrown ... What's that? Oh, sorry, this is just Tiger yelling at himself.
Instead of adding another Players Championship trophy to his collection, and sticking it to Woods after their public spat on Saturday, Garcia instead added another chart-topper to his collection of on-course meltdowns.
Below are some his other "highlights." Not included is Garcia's waggle-fest at Bethpage, where he was heckled mercilessly by the rowdy New York crowd. (Sergio eventually gave them the one-finger salute.)
Sergio Spits in a Cup It doesn't get much worse than this. The best part is when Jimmy Roberts grills Garcia about why he did it, and Sergio just hems and haws.
Sergio 1, Microphone 0 "If you thought you heard something after Sergio hit the ball, you did. It was Sergio hitting our microphone."
'The Ball Goes Right, The Club Goes Left'
That about sums it up ...
Was Sergio's best bunker meltdown this one ...
... Or this one?
No piece of equipment is safe from Sergio's temper, including his shoes.
Chip In, Flip Out Yes, Sergio even gets mad after chipping in!
Three-time champ Nick Faldo announced on Friday he is set to return to this year's Open Championship held at Muirfield from July 18-21.
Faldo, currently the lead golf anchor for CBS Sports, hasn't played competitively since he missed the cut (72-81) at the 2010 Open Championship at St. Andrews. The former world No. 1 ranked player holds three Claret Jugs, winning three titles in six years with two coming at Muirfield.
"I've been fighting it for years," Faldo said. "I was in the gym on Monday, and it suddenly just hit me. I thought, 'Come on, this is one more walk,' and I'll probably never get a chance to walk at Muirfield. If I can just get over the hurdle and say to myself, 'What will be, will be." I can't go for score. I can't be any fitter. If I can just hit a few solid long irons, who knows what could happen? I could just go play and enjoy the shot"
Faldo selected his son, Matthew, to be his caddie for the tournament, who offered ample support for his father's decision.
"He goes, 'Blimey, are you sure? Bloody hell, Dad, what made you think of that?'" Faldo said. "But it's for him, and it's for my kids. We can go, have an enjoyable week at it and soak up the old memories"
The 2008 Open Championship marked the first time Faldo wasn't in the field since '76. He had played in 32 consecutive Open Championships previously. He missed the cut in '09 and '10, opted not to play in '11 and joined the BBC Sport commentary team for the event in '12.
"I've got just over two months to go to get myself to pretend that I'm a golfer," Faldo said.