Last week I wrote about the influence of Tiger Woods (Bridgestone Tour B XS) on the global sports landscape because of the three-second video of him taking a swing he posted last month.
And after that, Tiger went viral – really viral.
First came the invitational tournament that he hosts every year, the Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas, which Viktor Hovland (Titleist Pro V1) won. I mentioned in one of my earlier blogs Hovland would win a Grand Slam event, possibly as early as this season. I just think he’s that good and he’s on fire early in the 2021-2022 PGA Tour.
And by the way, having an invitational tournament with only 20 players is, in my opinion, far more exciting that a tournament with a far bigger lineup but without guaranteed star power. Yeah, I guess the only way to develop into one of the top-20 in the world is by grinding it out on the PGA and establishing a name, which is what Hovland has done in recent years. He’s a young stud.
In many respects, Woods completely overshadowed Hovland’s win. In the winner’s photo, Woods, standing on the left side of the trophy and Hovland on the right, is dressed in his signature red shirt and black pants. But he’s also taller and bigger than Hovland. The young Norwegian, as I’ve noted in the past, is solidly built, but Woods looks like a behemoth by comparison, in particular his biceps. For all he’s gone through, most recently the car accident that shattered both his legs 10 months ago, Woods has always been in prime physical condition. Long before Bryson DeChambeau (Bridgestone Tour B X) and Brooks Koepka (Srixon Z-Star), Woods began the trend to bulking up physically with weights.
I would also include Gary Player in that list, but he was more into strength and conditioning fitness for the core than specifically the upper body.
But I digress.
Ever since the Hero World Challenge, there has been more evidence that Woods is starting to literally round into golf shape. So now he will put that on display in the PNC Championship with his 12-year-old son, Charlie, next week in Orlando. The father and son duo played in the PNC Championship last year and, because of the magnitude of the two the event was televised.
There are multiple videos of the young Woods and the comparisons in his swing to his father.
The PNC is two rounds with a scramble format and involves 20 teams. Because he is still recovering from the crash, the elder Woods will be allowed to use a golf cart. While that may seem heresy to a sport so rich in its rules and standards, let’s not get carried away. This is a fun event.
And yet it is Tiger, back in any kind of tournament after a crash in which it seemed he would either never play a PGA event again. Who knows if he will? He has downplayed that since surfacing in public again, and yet Vegas oddsmakers have him 30-1 to win the Masters.
He has not even fully committed to the event, but bookmakers will take bets on anything. So even if Tiger isn’t saying he will be in the tournament, you can wager a few bucks now on a flyer.
One thing is certain: expect the unexpected from Tiger Woods.
And we may be saying the same thing about Charlie Woods in years to come.