Brandt Snedeker and Angel Cabrera fired three-under 69s on Saturday to storm into the lead at seven-under, but it was Tiger Woods who stole the majority of the headlines. That started before he even hit the course.
In the second round, Woods' approach on No. 15 struck the pin and rebounded into the water. He took a drop, and prior to Round 3, it was ruled he did so illegally and was assessed a two-stroke penalty.
CNN can fill you in on the controversial melee that ensued:
In the end, this meant Tiger had to start the third at just one-under.
Tiger went onto have a solid round. He was up and down on the front as he carded two birdies and two bogeys for an even-par 36, but he then went onto fire a two-under 34 on the back to move to three-under for the tournament.
This was his first under-par nine on Augusta's backside in his last nine rounds.
That nice run on the back included Tiger avoiding the dreaded flagstick on No. 15 with this masterful approach:
So, in all, Tiger striking the pin on No. 15 in Round 2 essentially cost him four strokes, and a place at the top of this leaderboard:
While four strokes is a lot of ground to make up in the final round, if Tiger starts to get luck swinging his way, he could make a run at his fifth green jacket with his first come-from-behind, final-round win in a major.
To pull it off, he will have to hope that co-leaders Snedeker and Cabrera fall off their pace from Saturday.
Snedeker, who has missed the cut in his only two tournaments since returning from a rib injury, started off his day with 12 straight pars. The defending FedEx Cup champ then birdied the two remaining par fives and the par-three 16th.
It is hard to know what to expect from Snedeker on Sunday, a point which is highlighted by this tweet from Dan Jenkins of Golf Digest:
The collapse was so hard on Snedeker, it produced this emotional interview:
Meanwhile, 269th-ranked, but two-time major winner, Cabrera is in great position to capture his second green jacket.
If he does so, only Ben Curtis at the 2003 British Open will have won a major while being ranked lower in the world rankings.
While this makes Cabrera's title shot shocking, perhaps we shouldn't be too stunned. ESPN's Justin Ray points out why with this tweet:
Cabrera's swing is perfect for this course, and it shows with his 64.3 driving percentage—he's only hitting 56.9 percent for the year.
If he keeps putting like he has been, he is going to be tough to beat. Check out this effort on No. 10:
Right behind the front-running duo is Adam Scott, who is looking for his first major, but he certainly has experience being in contention. He came in second at Augusta two years ago, and of course, he had his epic collapse to lose the British Open last year when he bogeyed the final four holes.
Scott also fired a 69 on Saturday as his only bogey came on the difficult 10th hole. He looked strong down the stretch while birdieing three of the final six holes and is in great position to tackle his major demons.
When it comes to proven poise down the stretch of majors, Cabrera has a huge advantage, but he certainly doesn't have the recent track record to suggest he can pull it off.
I like Snedeker to take home the green jacket. He hasn't suffered a bogey in his last 27 holes, and he now has the experience to handle the final-round pressure of Augusta.
Whatever happens, it should be a wild and memorable finish at the year's first major.