What now Tiger?
As we all know, Tiger Woods missed the cut yesterday at the PGA Championship. He finished at 10-over par and now is three-quarters of the way from completing the Tiger Slam of missed cuts as a professional.
He had missed the cut previously in a major at the 2009 British Open and the 2006 US open. Left to complete it is missing the cut at the Masters. He missed it in 1996, but he was still an amateur.
Woods played better yesterday. He followed his miserable first-round 77 with a 73, but that was six away from making the cut.
Now there are some big questions on everyone’s mind. What now for Tiger Woods after his latest major disappointment? Is he destined to be just a shadow of the great player he was or is there still hope?
Woods didn't even qualify for the FedExCup Playoffs. By failing to pick up any FedEx Cup points, Woods didn't get in the Top 125 required to qualify.
With the missed cut and his decision not to play in the last regular-season event next week, Woods can't tee it up again on the PGA Tour until at least the first weekend of October. That means he won't be playing at The Tour Championship next month at East Lake.
Will Tiger be able to bounce back and become the top golfer he once was?
Now he'll be out of public view again for another long layoff. Since he won't attempt to qualify for the FedEx Cup playoff, his next tournament will be in November when he heads down under to play the Australian Open.
I for once think it’s a good idea to take that time off. It really makes no sense to keep playing—if we can call what he is doing that—competitive golf for the moment.
What can he do now? That is the next question, because whatever it is that he's doing is not working one bit.
Tiger Woods fired his long-time caddie, Steve Williams, a few weeks ago. Many people, including me, thought of it as a clean break from his recently troubled past and that it would do him great.
The results so far? Not promising. Now there is the call for the removal of his childhood friend Bryon Bell, who doubles as President of Woods Golf Design, from the bag.
But to blame Bell for the recent results is just plain ludicrous. Bell didn’t hit 22 bunkers and four water-splashes. I agree he is not the answer either. Bell is just a temporary hiring. He must find one very positive and professional caddie soon.
He must settle his swing coach thing once and for all. Woods must finally finish learning Sean Foley's philosophies with regards to plane, trajectory and all of that nonsense. But why should he have to?
It's his decision after all, but I think it's the global consensus that he should just say thanks but no thanks to Foley and go back to Butch Harmon or Hank Haney. At the end of the day he will need lots of reps.
Definitely more than anything else, what he does these upcoming weeks will echo in his future. What he does when he comes back will define Woods’ career and legacy. We will know if he will get to be remembered as the greatest ever, or the greatest implosion ever.
We’ll get to know if the future holds more majors or if he will just become a shadow of his former self. Will he become the world’s best golfer again or just an afterthought?
We will be waiting for all the answers.