Tiger Woods and the U.S. Open
Golf Digest writers and editors discuss Tiger Woods' success in the U.S. Open as well as his chances of ever winning again.
Released on 6/15/2015
|Executive Producer:||Harris Levinson|
(rhythmic, pulsing guitar music)
Tiger was more well suited for the U.S. Open
than any player in history by a wide margin,
with the exceptions, possible exceptions,
of Ben Hogan and Jack Nicklaus.
It was a mixture of a sublime golf game,
combined with these emotional and psychological factors
that just made him one of a kind.
Whoever was leading or whoever was in the field knew,
he's coming, or he's making a run.
They couldn't deal with it on top of dealing
with the difficulty of the U.S. Open.
It's like, can I catch a break, okay?
I'm tough enough to survive the U.S. Open,
but now you've got Superman on my back.
For all of Tiger's talent, incredible talent,
maybe his best attribute is being able to grind out a par,
and I don't think any player liked grinding out a par,
or hated making a bogey, worse than Tiger Woods.
In some ways Tiger is the ultimate U.S. Open player.
He's, by temperament, very much a disciplined player,
who plays percentages, even though he's got all this power,
and people remember the spectacular shots.
He's very good at continually making pars,
making the smart play.
At Pebble Beach in 2000, you saw the dominance,
the ability to just beat a field into submission.
Bethpage was a real tough, big man's golf course,
and he just drove it well, kept it in play,
made the putts he had to keep making,
didn't make any big mistakes.
And then Torrey Pines I think was the epitome of Woods.
Standing on that last hole, needing the birdie
to get into the playoff, having that putt,
it was no gimme, by any stretch of the imagination.
That's what showed what Tiger really separates himself,
and that's mentally.
You know, it's not just the years, it's the mileage.
We're seeing his nervous system is sort of eroding,
if you will.
He's been hard at it for so long.
I'd say the flaws that he's showing
in his game these last five, six years,
are ones that are antithetical to the U.S. Open.
I mean, to be crooked, is pretty much death
in the U.S. Open, be consistently crooked.
His chipping now, to not have a great wedge game
around the green, which he always had, maybe the best.
Now to be on the opposite side of that,
is also fatal, I think.
The fact that he's down right now,
he's had all these injuries,
he hasn't played well in a while,
it still wouldn't surprise me
or anyone to see him come back and win.
I think he still wants to be great.
There is something innate about him
that he will not stop trying, and I think that's why,
as long as he's walking, I think he'll have a chance
to win a major, and particularly win
the toughest major there is.