Thursday, June 19, 2008

Tiger Woods: Human or Alien?

We've all had a day to reflect on the news that was released yesterday regarding Tiger Woods and his balky knee and leg. I, like many of you out there, got the sense at times that Tiger was being a bit overdramatic with his wincing at certain points during the U.S. Open. However, he revealed yesterday that not only was he playing with a torn ACL, he also had two stress fractures in his tibia.

I'm no doctor, or orthopedist, and I don't play one on TV, but that sounds damn near impossible. I know you can walk around with a torn ACL, because I've seen it done, but I don't know about walking almost 22 miles in five days on a torn ACL. Plus, with the torque Tiger puts on his left knee and lower leg, those stress fractures probably didn't feel too good on any swing he made.

Tiger made a comment during the tournament (round three, I think) that he had "taken some stuff" to help with the pain in his leg. My experience with awesome pain killers is rather limited, but whenever I've had the joyous opportunity to take some, I usually have problems muttering sentences, let alone playing golf in U.S. Open conditions.

Oh, and then there's what Tiger's swing coach, Hank Haney, had to say yesterday:
According to Haney, doctors told him the stress fractures required three weeks on crutches and another three weeks of rest, which would have meant no Open for Woods.

"But Tiger looked at the guy and said, 'I'm playing in the U.S. Open and I'm going to win,' " Haney said.
Right. My doctor tells me I need three weeks on crutches plus three weeks of rest after that, and my first inclination is not playing golf.

To put this into context, this wasn't the NBA or NFL playoffs; it's still golf, after all. And one thing that about golf is this: it is more mental than physical. Strategy and mindset go a long way in determining how successful one can be. Everyone knows that Tiger is the toughest, mentally, of any golfer on Tour, so it's not all that surprising that he was able to compartmentalize his pain and simply play through it. What's scary for the rest of the players, however, is that Tiger Woods played a U.S. Open setup and won the tournament with an injury that would have caused 99% of the other golfers out there to sit out. That's what's impressive to me.

1 comment:

ncsumatman said...

what kinda blog you running here, not even a mention of the LA pantsing? I expected something more than blissfully ignoring the NBA exists.