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Lessons From Chambers Bay: Down Goes Tiger

The Pros on Chambers Bay's Greens: Can We Blame Them?
We can cut the pros some slack on the Chambers Bay greens, says Sports Illustrated writer John Garrity, but only to a certain extent.

I will never be able to unsee Tiger Woods falling on his ass at Chambers Bay.

He did so figuratively in the first round when he shot an 80 that included eight bogeys, a triple and a duffer’s topped fairway-wood shot.

In the second round he took a literal tumble. On his opening hole Woods yanked his approach shot halfway up a Mount Kilimanjaro-like dune. As he sized up the ensuing awkward pitch, he slipped and fell on his rear end. Tiger was fine but the Internet-viral moment dripped with symbolism.

Add his dismal 16-over-par effort at Chambers Bay to the 82 and chip-yips in Phoenix, the Torrey Pines first-round walk-off and the 85 at Memorial and—yikes—this is not The Year of the Tiger.

Photo:

Tiger Woods slips and falls near the 10th green during round 2 of the 2015 U.S. Open.

Once upon a time, Tiger hit at least one shot every tournament that seemed humanly impossible, or he did something I’d never seen, from the bunker shot over the lake to win the 2000 Canadian Open, to the 7-iron from the rough onto Pebble Beach’s sixth green at the 2000 Open to... well, Tiger’s greatest hits list is long and wonderful.

Last week, Tiger Woods figuratively fell and couldn’t get up. I almost wish I hadn’t seen it.

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