Thursday, May 07, 2009

The once indomitable Tiger Woods has returned as a very good, but not exceptional, professional golfer. He can grind out a comeback victory at Bay Hill, but he can
also finish Augusta bogey-bogey on Sunday. In other words, he's been a
lot more Clark Kent than Superman. And like Clark Kent learned when he
gave up his powers and then got beat up in a Snow-Belt diner
, a lot of
folks will take a shot at Superman if they get the opportunity.CBS
Sports commentator David Feherty -- a certified Friend of Tiger -- started
the fun on Sunday after Woods's fourth-place finish at Quail Hollow, a
tournament he opened with a Superman 65 on Thursday and ended with a
stolid, Kent-like 72. In an interview that would be unthinkable with the
pre-surgery Woods, Feherty asked Woods if he "feels like loser." Woods
forced a smile and played along, saying he wasn't even the first loser,
and Feherty told him, "Hey, you're a loser, and good luck next week."Then
at the Players Championship on Tuesday, Phil Mickelson piled on,
although carefully. Mickelson knows that the ultra-competitive Woods
takes every perceived slight personally and takes great pleasure in paying them back
doubly (as Stephen Ames could tell us, if he was alive). Still, you
can't blame Mickelson for taking the bait and cracking up the press
room when asked if he noticed that he was out-driving Woods on every
hole when they were paired together on Masters Sunday.Question:
Just for clarity's sake, it was pretty hard not to notice that you were
farther than him off just about every tee in the final round. You were
aware of that too, I imagine.Phil Mickelson (deadpan): I kept having to wait for him to hit, sure.
But no one would suggest that the World No. 1 needed a golf lesson.
Uh, hold that thought. Bill Nicols of The Dallas Morning News reports
that six-time major winner Lee Trevino thinks Woods needs a lesson and that Trevino
would be happy to give it. The Merry Mex
has sent word to Woods, through mutual friend Mark O'Meara, to give him
a call. And he's serious.
"Tiger needs to learn how to
hit a power fade," said Trevino, a five-time major champion. "If he
learns how to drive the ball, he won't lose a tournament. He's got
nothing to lose, just call me. Heck, I'd go see him, he wouldn't have
to do nothing."
the thing. After Superman got his powers back and saved the
world, he made a point to return to that Snow-Belt diner and throw the
local bully into a pinball machine. Prediction for Tiger's possible
revenge: He forgives Feherty after a suitably self-debasing apology, he
bests Mickelson at the U.S. Open on super-long Bethpage, and then maybe he visits the pro shop at a dusty, wind-blown course in El Paso, puts
some major hardware on the counter, and says, "About that lesson..."

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