Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018 – a date that will go down in history. For me, an avid Eldrick “Tiger” Woods fan, I knew this day would come, but to those who thought he was a broken down, washed up, old man, this day might feel weird. That is because you never thought Tiger Woods would win another golf tournament again, well, he just did.
Golf is tremendously hard and what Tiger Woods has been able to do is nothing short of remarkable.
Woods won his 80th professional golf tournament this past Sunday, winning the PGA Tour Championship at East Lake in Atlanta while the whole world was watching. It was his third time winning the PGA Tour Championship. However, it has been five years or 1,876 days or 239 PGA Tour events since he last won. He has also only had 44 worldwide starts and four back surgeries during that time.
Woods’ 80 wins put him 37 ahead of Phil Mickelson, 61 more than Dustin Johnson, 56 more than Rory McIlroy and 59 more than Jordan Spieth.
Tiger’s win means a lot for the sports universe because it is a story that transcends sports. Anyone who has ever been down and out, anyone who has ever been told they aren’t good enough will understand Tiger’s story, even if they barely who he is or what golf is. The comeback story of all comeback stories. At one point he seemed invincible, but after everything Tiger has gone through in the last five years he has become human to the world.
It was a different Tiger after he watched Rory Mcllroy tap in on the 18th green and he realized he was going to win, “I was pretty emotional when Rory [Mcllroy] was tapping out,” said Woods during his post-round interview. “I looked around and the tournament was over because I’d already put the bunker shot on the green and I’d won 80.”
Tiger Woods is to golf what Michael Jordan is to basketball, what Wayne Gretzky is to hockey, what Derek Jeter is to baseball and what Serena Williams is to tennis. He is the greatest golfer ever, a living legend and he is still playing for us to watch and admire.
Athletes from around the sports universe were watching Sunday. NBA Champion Steph Curry, Olympic legend Michael Phelps, Arizona Cardinal receiver, Larry Fitzgerald and tennis star Serena Williams have all been supportive of Tiger. It goes to show that athlete’s love watching other athletes be great.
Tiger Woods without question is the greatest golfer to have ever played the game. Yes, to some people, Jack Nicklaus is the greatest because of his 18 majors, but Jack never moved the needle of golf like Tiger does. Tiger is the needle, he makes golf more entertaining, even to those who barely know what golf is.
Woods’ win means a lot to the PGA and to the sport of golf. It means a lot to sports and culture. It means a lot to people who believe in bouncing back and hope.
I got emotional watching him win this tournament. I think because it’s an inspiring feeling seeing Tiger Woods get back to where he was. To see him fall off his place at the top of the golf mountain and have everyone turn their backs on him, only to see him win. It was truly amazing. Watching his hard work and determination pay off, it is proof that no matter how far you fall, your work hard and determination can bring you back to the top