To quote the great Michael Jordan, "I've failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed."
No, this is not a promotion for Nike.
This is a message to those who continually criticize the greatest golfer in the past 30 years, maybe of all time. This is a message to those who think he has seen his glory and his best days have passed.
Are you insane?
The man has finished second in the PGA Championship and The Barclays, yet the whispers of his demise have become as popular as Hannah Montana (I promised myself never to mention that name, but I digress).
I have never heard of such talk about a man who finished runner-up in two top tier professional golf tournaments.
Remember, this is Tiger Woods we are talking about here.
The same man who hit golf balls on national TV as a toddler, the man who set the standard for modern day amateur golfers, the same man who set fire to Augusta in route to his first Butler Cabin trip, this is a man who does not live by the same standards most people do.
Of course, it is easy to point the finger at his knee, or the fact he has a family to think about as key factors in his "fall from the top."
The only question is—would you take another player over Tiger on Sunday?
If you just said yes, please go to your physician and get a full mental examination, please.
Tiger has a couple more tournaments to go in 2009, but as of right now, he is already mapping out his plan of attack in 2010.
He has been very successful as a golfer on every level: juniors, amateur, and professional. He has won, and yet he has had his share of "failure." His failure is most golfers’ success, he has been so successful, and we as fans almost expect him to win every time he tees it up.
He has made $82,915,762.25 in career earnings as a professional golfer, and that does not even include endorsements!
He has won 28.4% of the professional tournaments he has played in. Read that again and think about the fact he wins at least one out of four tournaments he steps onto the first tee.
He faces about one hundred fifty players every time out, yet still wins 28.4% of the time. However, all that is in the past.
The future is the question at hand. Like Michael Jordan said, his failures made him succeed. Do you think Tiger is any different than MJ?
As competitors, they share many of the same traits:
- You can see the anguish on their faces when they lose; they are gracious in defeat, but you can see the bitter taste left in their mouth.
- They can mentally beat an opponent before the game/round has even begun.
- Both have enough drive a determination to fuel themselves and their fans. Their supporters are die hard, yet even those who root against them always will respect them as athletes. Now that, my friends, is called success.
Thus, in 2010, Tiger will once again return to the force he has been in years past.
He has been busy starting a family of his own and much work outside the ropes, yet he remains towards the top of the leader board every time he steps up to the tee.
Most importantly, he remains the number one player in the world, light years above the rest.
Sit back and enjoy the golf Tiger plays next year. He will come out more focused and more ready than in years past.
After seeing him react to Heath Slocum's winning putt, anyone could see he hated to lose. He wasn't unhappy for Slocum, he was unhappy with his own performance. He looked eager to redeem himself. That should worry the other players in the locker room.
February 14th, 2010 marks the date for the Chinese New Year.
Like most of you know, every year is signified by an animal. According to the calendar, 2010 has been named "The Year of the Tiger."
Eerie, isn't it?