Woods hitting stride, but has he hit his peak?

And while the $10,867,052 was short by $38,114 of the record Singh set in 2004, the big Fijian played 29 times that year. Woods played in only 16 tournaments. That's an average of $172,493 per round.

Woods said the latest adjustment since the British Open, where he tied for 12th, was simply shifting the weight more toward the balls of his feet for better balance. That made it appear he was standing closer to the ball.

Swing coach Hank Haney hasn't seen much change the last two years, with one exception. What he watched with regularity on the range at Woods' home course in Isleworth, he now sees more often inside the ropes on the PGA Tour.

"I've seen him play like this and hit the ball like this the last couple of years - for sure the last year - but most of times I've seen that, it's been at Isleworth," Haney said Sunday from his home in Dallas. "It's only been bits and pieces in tournaments."

It's still not perfect.

Woods lunged at one tee shot on the 16th hole at East Lake in the opening round, scolding himself when it sailed to the right.

"Tiger Woods!" he said through clenched teeth. "Trust your swing."

Haney believes that trust was evident at Oakmont in the third round of the U.S. Open, when Woods hammered a driver down the middle of the fairway on his way to perhaps his best ball-striking round of the year. He hit 17 greens in regulation that day.

"I know what that hole feels like to him. It's really tight," Haney said. "On the practice tee, he said, 'I'm driving the ball in the fairway.' And he piped it right down the middle, then did the same thing on Sunday. I felt that was big turning point in his confidence."

Woods didn't see it that way.

In his eyes, the turning point came at the Western Open last July. He had just missed the cut in a major for the first time, opened with a 72 at Cog Hill, then spent hours that Thursday afternoon on the practice range. It was hard work, but enjoyable.

For the first time since his father died, it was fun.

"I got over all the things that happened earlier, and I finally got back to just playing golf again," he said. "That mourning period ... I felt I was done with it. Once I got back to playing golf, I felt I was back in my rhythm again. And from then, if you look at my results since then, it's been pretty good."

No one thought that 2000 season could ever be topped, and it probably remains the benchmark. Woods won nine times in 20 starts, including three straight majors, and three victories of at least eight shots. But his highest winning percentage was last year (8-of-15), and his adjusted scoring average is the same as it was in 2000.

Instead of looking back, consider the future.

What if he still hasn't hit his prime?

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