Play Fantasy Use your Fantasy skills to win Cash Prizes. Join or start a league today. Play Now
 
Tag:Tiger Woods
Posted on: March 8, 2012 3:08 pm
 

Video: Tiger Woods eagles first hole at Doral

By Shane Bacon

There are a few interesting things about the above video showing Tiger Woods making eagle on his first hole of the Cadillac Championship. Not only was it a great start, but look at some of the other fun facts about it.

-- With his birdie-eagle finish last week at the Honda Classic and his eagle here, it means that Tiger had a three hole stretch where he was 5-under. 

-- With eagles on both the par-5s on Sunday at the Honda and the eagle to start his Thursday round at Doral, it was the third straight eagle on a par-5 for Woods. 

-- It means that the last 19 holes Tiger played, he was 10-under. 

And hey, eagle time is always fun! 

Check out the Eye on Golf Facebook page and follow Shane Bacon and Eye On Golf on Twitter.  

Category: Golf
Posted on: March 8, 2012 11:08 am
Edited on: March 8, 2012 12:03 pm
 

What would a win mean for each of these players?

Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy and Lee Westwood pose in China. (Getty Images)

By Shane Bacon

The WGC-Cadillac Championship kicks off this Thursday, and all top-50 players are in the field for the stacked event. And while all of the guys in the field have a chance, we decided to give you an idea of what a win would mean for some of the bigger names in the field. 

Rory McIlroy (World Ranking: 1) -- A win would really cement all those “next Tiger” stories, and show that while he’s happy to win events like Honda Classic, he isn’t exactly content with one win early in his season. Rory probably has the most pressure this week because he has to back up a big performance at the Honda, and if he can pull a victory out at Doral, it would really show his internal fortitude. 

Luke Donald (WR: 2) -- Lost in all this McIlroy-Woods chatter, we must remember that Donald was the No. 1 player in the world before Rory took it from him, and still has tons of game. A win by Donald would show that he’s tougher than we think, and is really ready to fight against the best for big wins. 

Lee Westwood (WR: 3) -- Talk about lost in the shuffle, Westwood closed with a final round 63 at the Honda Classic, but barely anybody remembered it because of Tiger’s 62. He has barely won anything on American soil, but his game is sharp, and if he won it would mean that he is finally ready to claim victory at events with all the big names in them.

Phil Mickelson (WR: 12) -- You never know what you’re going to get from Lefty these days, but his win at Pebble Beach showed he is still hungry to win, and a victory at Doral this week would show that 2012 might be another year that Mickelson goes wild. He’s the type of player that can still win four or five events a season, and if he won at the Blue Monster, we’d all have to put him first on our Masters prediction lists.

Tiger Woods (WR: 16) --  A win for Tiger? It would mean everything. He could stop answering questions about how close he is. He could finally get a real tournament monkey off his back (unlike the small field at the Chevron). He would show that he can play well back-to-back weeks and would tell the rest of the golfing world that he isn’t exactly ready to hand over the game to the younger generation. 

Check out the Eye on Golf Facebook page and follow Shane Bacon and Eye On Golf on Twitter. 
Posted on: March 7, 2012 4:02 pm
Edited on: March 7, 2012 5:26 pm
 

Yes, really: Tiger, Lefty in a Masters friendly?

Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson planned to play a round at Augusta earlier this week but Woods backed out at the last moment. Mickelson joked that Woods was intimidated. (Getty)

By Steve Elling

DORAL, Fla. -- Guess they'll have to settle for their battle three weeks ago at Pebble Beach.

Though it sounds hard to believe, when Phil Mickelson made his annual trip up to Augusta National earlier this week for some Masters recon, he spent his practice time solely with new running mates Dustin Johnson and Keegan Bradley.

That's because Tiger Woods was a no-show.

Mickelson said Wednesday at the Cadillac Championship that two marquee players had planned to play together, but it fell through.

"I guess it was the intimidation," Mickelson cracked.

Playing in the same group as Woods three weeks ago at the AT&T National Pro-Am at Pebble Beach, Mickelson came from six shots back in the final round, shooting 64 to win. He beat Woods by 11 strokes that day.

In fact, Mickelson was full of whistling one-liners about Woods on Wednesday. When he was asked about the 8-under 62 that Woods shot last Sunday in the final round of the Honda Classic to nearly come from behind to win, Mickelson was in prime form.

"Obviously, [Tiger] was paying attention a couple of weeks ago, which is nice to see," he said, causing laughs from many in the room.

Some in the room clearly didn’t get the reference to Pebble Beach.

"At least I thought it was funny," Mickelson said, making a hand motion above his head. "Whoosh."

Publicists for both players said after Mickelson's press conference at Doral Golf Resort & Spa that they had no personal knowledge of any plans for the two to play together at Augusta National.

Check out the Eye on Golf Facebook page and follow Eye On Golf on Twitter.   

Posted on: March 7, 2012 3:13 pm
Edited on: March 7, 2012 4:14 pm
 

Woods leads Tavistock roster picks at Lake Nona

By Steve Elling

DORAL, Fla. -- It's intended by design to be a boutique event, yet has been derided for being closed to the general public and characterized as a glorified cash grab for players, among other insults.

Nonetheless, it's back for iteration No. 9.

The Tavistock Cup matches this year will be held at Lake Nona Golf & Country Club in Orlando, with four six-man teams competing for an array of cash and assorted prizes.

The two-day event will be held March 19-20, the Monday and Tuesday of the Arnold Palmer Invitational across town at Bay Hill Club & Lodge. The four clubs participating all have ownership ties to the corporate host of the event, the Tavistock Group.

All the back story aside, Tiger Woods is playing, so some eyeballs will surely be watching on the Golf Channel, which will air live coverage.

The roster for Albany, a club located in the Bahamas, features Tim Clark, Ernie Els, Trevor Immelman, Ian Poulter, Justin Rose and Woods. Isleworth’s lineup is Robert Allenby, Daniel Chopra, Charles Howell III, Sean O’Hair, Bo Van Pelt and Bubba Watson.

Lake Nona, which won last year, has Ben Curtis, Ross Fisher, Retief Goosen, Peter Hanson, Graeme McDowell and Gary Woodland. Team Queenwood, a club from England, is made up of Thomas Bjorn, David Howell, Soren Kjeldsen, Tom Lewis, Paul McGinley and Adam Scott.

Lewis is an intriguing pick. He turned pro last season after a stellar performance in the British Open as an amateur and is entered in next week's PGA Tour event, the Transitions Championship, outside Tampa.

Check out the Eye on Golf Facebook page and follow Eye On Golf on Twitter.
 
   

Category: Golf
Posted on: March 6, 2012 4:46 pm
Edited on: March 6, 2012 4:51 pm
 

More info comes out about Tiger and the SEALS

Tiger Woods spends time at Fort Bragg in 2004. (Getty Images)

By Shane Bacon

Just when we thought the Navy SEALS story about Tiger Woods was dead, GolfDigest.com revealed even more from the upcoming Hank Haney book and it’s even more intense than you think.

"The Big Miss" is the upcoming Haney account of his time with Tiger, and while the book hasn’t hit the stores yet, pieces keep leaking and it just gets juicier and juicer. 

So we know that Tiger thought about becoming a Navy SEAL, but how intense was he? According to the book, incredibly. Tiger went on multiple training sessions with the SEALS, and even did a three-day parachute training session just 18 days before the 2006 U.S. Open, which prompted the following e-mail from Haney to Woods.

With the U.S. Open 18 days away, do you think it was a good idea to go on a Navy SEALs mission? You need to get that whole SEALs thing out of your system and stick to playing Navy SEAL on the video games. I can tell by the way you are talking and acting that you still want to become a Navy SEAL. Man, are you crazy? You have history to make in golf and people to influence and help. Focus on your destiny, and that isn't flushing bad guys out of buildings in Iraq. Just play the video games some more. That Navy SEAL stuff is serious business. They use real bullets.

The four page excerpt on GolfDigest.com has even more about his infatuation with the SEALS, saying Tiger went as far as to play SEALS-based video games for days on end and even told Haney they’d make an age-exception for him if he wanted to join, but your best bet is to head over to their site and read the whole thing for yourself. 

Tiger might have dismissed questions about this last week, but the more information that comes out, the more he’s going to get the random reporter wondering just how far he was willing to take this idea before he finally snubbed it. 

Check out the Eye on Golf Facebook page and follow Shane Bacon and Eye On Golf on Twitter. 
Category: Golf
Posted on: March 5, 2012 5:42 pm
 

Rory and Tiger a smash hit for tour TV ratings

By Steve Elling

PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. -- Once again, the public appetite for Tiger Woods, even 30 months after his last PGA Tour victory, never seems to wane.

Rising star Rory McIlroy did his fair share, too.
 
With the two leading men trading shots down the stretch on Sunday, the Honda Classic pulled its best overnight rating in a decade, grabbing a 3.2 rating for the final round, where McIlroy held off the charging Woods by two strokes.

The rating is the best for the event's final round since 2002, when Matt Kuchar won the event. McIlroy held on and became the new No. 1 player in the world, withstanding a 62 posted by Woods, the best final-round score of his career.

In all, the network reported a Sunday rating that 78 percent higher than the mark at Honda. which managed a 1.8 overnight for the final round. The broadcast hit high tide with a 4.3 rating as McIlroy in the telecast's final minutes.

With the No. 1 ranking on the line for McIlroy, the reigning U.S. Open champion, NBC earned a 1.9 overnight rating on Saturday, marking the best third-round overnight since '05. NBC sister network Golf Channel averaged 1.04 million viewers for its coverage on Thursday, marking the event's most-viewed opening round ever.

On the ground, Honda officials claimed a 44 percent increase in fans, drawing 162,000 for the week.

Posted on: March 5, 2012 5:18 pm
Edited on: March 5, 2012 6:00 pm
 

Woods heading back to familiar haunts -- Bay Hill

By Steve Elling 

PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. -- With these two in the field, it won’t matter much that many of the top internationals aren't heading to Orlando in two weeks.

Tiger Woods announced Monday that he will play at the Arnold Palmer Invitational later this month, joining another popular past champion, Phil Mickelson, in the event hosted by the legendary golfer and tournament namesake.

Woods has titles at the Bay Hill Club & Lodge in 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2008 and 2009. He was T24 last year and won the first of his three consecutive U.S. Junior titles there.

It's a busy stretch for the former world No. 1, now ranked 16th globally. He will have played four times in six weeks by the end of the Masters in April.

Mickelson posted on his website last week that he was playing at Bay Hill, where he won in 1997. The tournament starts March 22.

Though it won't be formally announced until Wednesday, Woods will play in Orlando's Tavistock Cup on March 19-20 at Lake Nona, representing the six-man team from Albany, a course in the Bahamas. There are four six-man teams in the event and the full rosters will be released Wednesday.

Rory McIlroy, the newly minted world No. 1, is taking three weeks off after competing this week at the Cadillac Championship outside Miami, where Woods and Mickelson also are entered. Several other top international players instead are playing the week after Bay Hill, in Houston, as a tune-up to the Masters, including Lee Westwood.

Woods and Mickelson were paired in the final round at Pebble Beach last month, where Mickelson shot 64 to come from six strokes back to win.

Check out the new Eye on Golf Facebook page and follow Eye On Golf on Twitter. 

Posted on: March 5, 2012 11:29 am
Edited on: March 5, 2012 12:14 pm
 

MMSC: Rory, Tiger, and the art of closing

Rory McIlroy reacts after his final putt drops at the Honda Classic. (Getty Images)

By Shane Bacon

Golf is probably the hardest sport in the world to play, and play well, so it makes total sense that everyone is a critic, and that’s what we’re going to do here at Monday Morning Swing Coach. Cover just the PGA Tour? Nope. We're going to try to expand this Monday feature to anything and everything that happened the past weekend. 

Rory and Tiger most impressive at closing

A lot of things will be made about what happened on Sunday at the Honda Classic. Tiger Woods’ charge up the leaderboard. Rory McIlroy winning and becoming No. 1 in the world. 

But the thing that impressed me the most? How both were able to finish their rounds. 

So many times pro golfers will play great until the end, see what they are doing, and lose focus. You saw that with Brian Harman on Friday, when a holed bunker shot would have landed him in the 59 club, but instead of making the shot, he hit it three feet and then missed the putt for a 60. Sure, 61 is great, but that focus was lost for a second and a shot was dropped that would have allowed him his first top-10 finish on the PGA Tour. 

Tiger has been struggling mightily in recent events he was in contention in with actually closing the round. The tournament that comes to mind first was the Masters a year ago, when Tiger made a run early in his round only to struggle on the holes he usually dominates. 

Not this Sunday. Tiger put together a fantastic round in swirling winds, and finished it with a birdie-eagle finish. 

McIlroy was no different. His scrambling and bunker play on Sunday reminded me of Retief Goosen back in 2001 at Southern Hills, but Rory kept missing his golf shots in the right spots, and kept hitting unbelievable chip shots in short range of the cup to give him chances at par, which he converted. 

The comparisons of Tiger and Rory are plentiful after Sunday, but the thing that Woods used to do that separated himself from the pack was play well with a lead, and Rory did just that on Sunday, closing his round out with solid pars when he knew that was all he needed. A less steady McIlroy might have let the Tiger charge ruin him. The new Rory didn’t, and his ability to make the important putts down the stretch allowed him to breeze up the 18th hole with a two-shot lead and an easy run at par and the win. 

A confidence boost week

There are so many names that will be looking back at the Honda Classic with positive thoughts. 

The easy ones are Rory and Tiger, both using this week as a springboard for the rest of the season, but look down the leaderboard and see all the big names that played well at the Champions Course. 

Tom Gillis almost quit golf at one point, but played steady all week, even in the final round, and made a clutch birdie on the last hole to tie for second with Tiger and earn some serious dough he can put towards his 2013 card. 

Lee Westwood was paired with Woods early in the week, and while Tiger always outshines the rest of the field, we shouldn’t forget that Lee fired a final round 63 before Tiger finished to jump 23 spots for a fourth place finish alone. 

And then comes Rickie Fowler. I had a discussion early in the week about the state of Fowler’s game and we decided the kid was regressing and maybe needed a swing change to get to more consistent. 

Maybe I was completely wrong. Rickie shot 66 on Sunday for his first top-10 finish of the season and showed he isn’t completely lost out there. 

The Nationwide Tour’s U.S. Open?

This past weekend, the Nationwide Tour headed to Panama City for an event at the Panama Golf Club, and I’m just going to toss this out there; you might want to avoid that golf course if you want to keep your pride in tact. 

The winning score was 4-under, courtesy of Edward Loar, but he shot a final round 74 to win the event and only six players all week finished in red figures. 

Check out the new Eye on Golf Facebook page and follow Shane Bacon and Eye On Golf on Twitter. 
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com