2010 Masters: The Who, What, and When of Tiger Woods' Press Conference

Bob Warja@@bobwarjaSenior Writer IApril 5, 2010

AUGUSTA, GA - APRIL 05:  Tiger Woods smiles as he walks up a fairway during a practice round prior to the 2010 Masters Tournament at Augusta National Golf Club on April 5, 2010 in Augusta, Georgia.  (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
Andrew Redington/Getty Images

His first public statement following the scandal was read from a prepared statement with no questions allowed. That was followed by two five-minute interviews with ESPN and the Golf Channel in which an evasive Tiger appeared reluctant to address details of his infidelity and the Nov. 27 car accident.

So this afternoon, as Tiger Woods met with the assembled media at 2 p.m. ET at Augusta National Golf Club in his first full-length interview since the scandal broke in November, there was plenty of anticipation.

ESPN.com golf writer Jason Sobel reported that there was a "near-stampede" to get the closest seats as doors opened to 207 reporters at 1:15.

With Sobel providing live analysis, a relaxed and confident Tiger started the press conference by commenting that the galleries "blew me away, to be honest with you. The people here are respectful. Today touched my heart pretty good."

Woods then proceeded to ask for the other players to be left alone "to focus on the Masters and their games... I apologize to all of them for having to endure what they've had to endure."

As for the injuries sustained in the car accident, Tiger reported that he had a "busted up lip and pretty sore neck. That was it. Five stitches in lip."

Tiger was then asked how he intends to show more respect to the game of golf, to which he replied:

"I'm going to try to not get as hot...but I'm not going to get as exuberant, either...can't be one without the other. Will try to tone down my negative outbursts, but positive will be calmed down as well... acknowledge the fans more...show my appreciation for them...haven't done that in past years, was wrong of me..."

Tiger went on to insist that he has never received HGH or PEDs from Dr. Galea, though he admits he came to his house. "Never taken any illegal drug in my life," Tiger said.

One interesting series of questions revolved around prescription drug use.  

When asked if he had ever been addicted to, or treated for the prescription drugs Ambien and Vicodin, he said "no." 

Tiger appeared perturbed when a later question asked if Ambien had anything to do with the crash. He simply said, "police investigated, cited me $166. Closed case."

Tiger was once again evasive when asked what he was doing rehab for, continuing to insist "that's private."

Look, Tiger, while we all understand your desire for some privacy, a response like that only continues the speculation that you are not being treated solely for sex addiction.

Meanwhile, Tiger confirmed that Elin will not be at the Masters and when pressed as to whether his time would be better spent repairing his relationship, Tiger simply answered "I decided to play this week."

Hey, if there is a relationship left to repair following all of Tiger's travails, then his wife should be up for sainthood.

Tiger was also evasive when asked what all the lies and deception would mean for his legacy, saying simply, "I can help more people going forward."

Some of the questions were ridiculous, such as whether Tiger had considered therapy before this. Um, no, he hadn't been caught yet and was living la vida loca.

And that was it. Approximately 36 minutes from Tiger Woods, who appeared to look relieved knowing that he can now get on with golf.

Overall, not a whole lot new here. He seemed open and honest about the questions he wanted to answer, but it was clear that he did not want to talk about details from the crash or the state of his marriage.

It was also clear why those reporters were hand picked as a lot of obvious questions were left unasked. He may not have answered them, but it would have been helpful to ask about where Elin is, are they going to stay married and what Tiger's schedule looks like going forward.

So Tiger was not having fun playing golf and played through a formerly unknown achilles injury in 2008? Well, look out if the distractions and injuries are gone now.

Meanwhile, it would be nice to just focus on the man's golf game now, but until he comes clean on some of the details, he will be dogged by questions.

It may be none of our business, but inquiring minds want to know.

Perhaps his next press conference will be as he slips on the green jacket.


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