Opinion: Breaking the Press – Taming the Tiger

Fine for crashing an Escalade into a tree in the front yard: $166. Subway chicken wrap for the mistress before a midnight romp: $3.99. Wiring money to the second mistresses’ checking account in return for her silence: $10 million. Having every sportscaster bet against you on your PGA tour return: priceless. There are some things in life that money cannot buy, and for Tiger Woods, that would be respect.

When Woods stepped up to the tee on Thursday, April 8, there was not a single player on the PGA tour who who doubted that he would end up being somewhere on the leader board when Sunday rolled around. Broadcasters and tour analysts, however, obviously had a different opinion, as their comments made over  this past week at the Masters indicated.

Although the last tournament Woods played in was Nov. 15, he still holds the position as the No. 1 player in the world.  The media missed that memo when many ESPN analysts predicted that he would not even make it to the cut on Saturday (and these guys get paid to predict this stuff). In typical fashion, Tiger did make the final cut. Beyond that, he placed fourth in the Master’s tournament with a score of -11 and could have very well won the tournament if it were not for a few kinks in his short game that forced a handful of bogies in the final two rounds.

Seriously, did ESPN honestly forget who this guy was while he was busy bumping uglies with cocktail waitresses and porn stars? He is still the best golfer in the game since Jack Nicklaus, will probably be regarded as the best ever after retirement and deserves that respect regardless of what is taking place in his personal life.

Nobody condones the behavior Tiger has presented off the course in the past year, or maybe even on the course, and I am not saying that it all should be overlooked and we should welcome him back with open arms and ticker-tape parades. But the man deserves a little r-e-s-p-e-c-t.

Tiger’s personal life, entertaining as it may be, should not be held in regards to the man’s ability on the course. He has performed as the top player on the tour for almost the entirety of his career, and it is not going to change just because of how he is performing between the sheets. There should have never been any doubt that he would come back just as strong as before.

Love him or hate him, Tiger will always be… well, Tiger. He may have fallen just short of a victory for the Masters, but he still has the talent to win many more tournaments in the future and will undoubtedly do so. As long as he can refrain from sexing up groupies and gold diggers, Woods will have no problem restoring the roar of his reign as the top player on the PGA tour.

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