I used to buy into the theory that golf needed Tiger Woods.
He has certainly made his fellow golfers a lot of money by generating interest and ratings. At the top of his game, he was the greatest golfer that I ever saw as he made it look so easy. For a weekend golfer, like myself, I know the game is not that easy and is more frustrating than anything else.
Woods is now done for 2015 as he underwent yet another surgery to correct a pinched nerve in his back. With that, the Tiger Woods Era is officially over.
When Woods injury news would come down, it would certainly shock you, but it no longer has that type of reaction. He will fight and he will come back, but we will never again see that Tiger that grabbed you - figuratively by the throat - and demanded that you watched his brilliance on the back 9 of a major. That icon and God of golf is gone. Stunningly, golf will be just fine.
They have young stars like Rory McIlroy, Jordan Spieth and Jason Day that will take the game and move it forward. With the brilliance of Spieth and the jaw-dropping ability of Day, the sport of golf thrived in 2015. Sure, a great Tiger would help the game, but the idea of Tiger finding his game to consistently compete with top-tier players is the thought of fools. Like a long lost first love, that man with that game is gone. Instead of fantasizing about the possibilities and reminiscing about that past, it is time to move on.
In the golf world, I believe that is what 2015 will be remembered for. It will mark a year of transition for the PGA tour. Tiger has won 14 majors, but has not won a tournament on tour since 2013 and has only played 11 events in 2015 and has missed the cut in the last three majors this season. Will he win again? For sure. Will he dominant the golf landscape like he once did? Definatley not.
Spieth captured the imagination of the sports fan with wins at the Masters and US Open and then in unreal run at the Open Championship at St. Andrew’s. He made it must see TV, which is saying a lot when your name is not Tiger.
And how good was it to see Jason Day finally win his first major at the PGA Championship? He did it in style as he finished at 20-under par, which set a record low scoring mark in a major, breaking the record that was held by Tiger Woods.
There is no doubt that Tiger built the sport of golf that we know and love.
As the saying goes, if you build it, they will come. Those that have arrived are products of the Tiger Woods Era. Young golfers that are mature beyond their years and are in impeccable shape. That strive to dominate like the man they grew up admiring. Woods will be back, but in name only. He has left the sport in the hands of a number of young, gifted golfers that look to do what Tiger made look so easy years ago: win.