Has Tiger Woods Officially Made His Comeback?

It was August of 1997 when I sat in my living room and watched Tiger Woods put on that coveted green jacket. Tiger had just won his first major by a whopping 12 strokes. I would forever equate the Masters and Augusta, Georgia with that iconic moment.

Back then, Woods was a 21-year-old superstar with a wholesome image and a trove of fans. I was one of those early fans. To me, what stood out most about Tiger Woods was his aggressive style and intense focus. Off the golf course, Woods seemed different from the other golfers. He was charismatic, multicultural and young. Most of all, Woods had star power. When Woods played, people watched.


For this reason, a Tiger Woods comeback would be great for golf. Yes, Woods has shown some promising performances since his return to competition in the Hero World Challenge last November in Albany, Bahamas. However, I think a true comeback would be no less than Tiger breaking Sam Snead’s long standing record of 82 PGA Tour wins. This would bring Tiger full circle, breaking records as he did when he first put on that green jacket.

By those standards, Tiger hasn’t officially made his comeback. However, based on his performance over the last year and a half Tiger has the momentum going in his favor. Here’s a look back at Tiger’s journey so far.

Career Threatening Injuries

A comeback journey always starts with a fall. For Tiger, the fall included a handful of major injuries. In fact, Tiger is no stranger to spending a significant amount of time on the sidelines due to these injuries. Tiger’s back issues are as infamous as Kobe Bryant’s leg injuries. However, Tiger has also had a series of other health-related issues that have prevented him from participating in the sport. Here is a list of some of Tiger’s major medical hurdles.

  • December 2002 – Tiger has surgery to remove fluid from his anterior cruciate ligament on his left knee. This surgery sidelined Tiger from the sport for weeks.
  • April 2008 – Tiger has another major surgery, arthroscopic surgery, to repair cartilage damage on his left knee.  During this time, Tiger also revealed that he had some stress fractures on his left tibia.
  • May 2010 – Tiger is diagnosed with an inflamed facet joint in the neck. Tiger himself admits to having played with a bad neck for some time.
  • August 2014 – Tiger withdraws from a major tournament, the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational citing he had lower back pain. This is where Tiger’s back problems begin.
  • February 2015 – Tiger walks off the tournament citing a lower back injury. His medical prognosis reveals that Tiger’s glutes keep shutting off and won’t activate. This impacts his lower back.
  • September 2015 – Tiger has a microdiscectomy surgery to remove a disk fragment that had been pinching his nerve.

Tiger had a series of other surgeries that took a toll on his body and, thus, overall performance. Tiger’s poor medical history was enough to make him fear even sitting in a golf cart and watching his colleagues play during the President’s Cup. He claimed that the bumps from the golf carts gave him unbearable pain.

Tiger’s Personal Demons

Tiger’s fall also included scandals outside the golf course. By now we are all well aware of Tiger’s marital discord and sexual addiction. However, Tiger’s more recent scandal reveals the destructiveness of his back injury.

In 2017, Tiger was arrested after falling asleep at the wheel. Tiger was hit with a DUI charge, after being found with five different drugs in his system, including Xanax.

Later, Tiger revealed that no alcohol was involved in the incident. He was remorseful and admitted that he recklessly tried to treat his back injuries and insomnia with his own concoction of drugs. The incident revealed the depths of Tiger’s injury and its impact both on and off the golf course.

Rusty Return

Just a few months later, Tiger made his return to competitive golf at The Hero World Challenge. As most expected, his return to competition was rusty. He finished in 17th place out of 18 spots.

Tiger’s next step would be the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines in late January of 2018. He hit a major milestone by completing all four rounds of the tournament,  a feat he hasn’t accomplished in nearly three years. Tiger ended with a T-23 finish. Although he never posed a real threat to the leaders or even managed to break 70, Tiger showed steady progress by simply completing each round.

Flourishing in Florida

Tiger has seen some historically remarkable moments in Florida. And 2018 was no different as he got his feet wet and battled to a 12th-place finish in the Sunshine State at the Honda Classic. It is here that Tiger also became the solo leader during a portion of round two. Essentially, this was the Tiger the golf world was accustomed to. Especially in round two, when according to CBS Sports, Tiger logged one 184 MPH shot.

Continuing his steady progress, Tiger earned a runner-up finish at the Valspar Championship and a T5 finish at the Arnold Palmer Invitational. Finally, at the Tour Championship last September, Tiger broke his drought and earned his first major win in five years. Overall, the 2017-2018 season was a story of steady progress for Tiger. According to Fox News, Tiger played in 18 events and finished in the top 10 seven times.

2019 Predictions

Tiger should be proud of last season’s showing. But as noted earlier, an athlete of Tiger’s caliber needs a grand slam in order to make his journey a true comeback. Earning three more PGA Tour wins in order to break Sam Snead’s PGA Tour record would fit the bill.

I predict that Tiger will accomplish this feat in 2019. Yes, the momentum he’s built from ending last season with a win at the Tour Championship is great. But the one difference maker that’ll push Tiger over Sam Snead’s record and toward a true comeback is more personal.

Tiger’s kids are now old enough to understand his profession and the intense competition it brings. Like any father, Tiger wants his children to see him breaking records and standing as a champion. Now that his children are old enough, Tiger needs to share a championship, record-breaking moment with them. Not through old ESPN clips, but in real-time. Tiger has already made huge strides in his progress, but it’s this motivation that’ll push him towards greatness again in 2019.

There’s nothing like a good comeback story, no matter what sport you are in! Read how Lebron James risked it all and  is now impacting the Lakers like never before!

 

Fantasy Sports for Dummies

Sports have been around for generations. They’re a proven source of drama and entertainment. Unlike in the past, we now have two types of sports; professional sports and fantasy sports. Professional sports are left to the physically exceptional athletes. However, fantasy sports are open to fanatics everywhere.

Fantasy sports, also known as roto or rotisserie, is a game where the participants assemble an imaginary lineup of real players. These teams then compete based on the team player’s statistical performance in the actual games. To get the winner of the competition, the performance of these virtual teams is then converted into points which are compiled and totaled by each fantasy team’s manager. The league commissioner who manages and coordinates the whole league can also manually calculate the points and announce the winner.

It’s important to note that simulation games are not fantasy sports. This is because the simulation games and wins are not scored using the real results of the actual sporting events.

Size of the Industry

As of May 2015, a study done in Australia revealed that fantasy sports are a whopping $2 billion industry. Plus, it’s expected to experience a 10.7% annual growth. Currently, the fantasy sports industry has about 4,386 people employed in 292 businesses. This number is also expected to grow exponentially in the coming years.

In 2016, the Fantasy Sports Trade Association reported that the industry was a $7.22 billion industry in the United States and Canada alone with about 50.3 million fantasy sports players.

How to Play Fantasy Sports

Want to join the millions of fantasy sports players? Let me walk you through how to get started:

  • As the game is only played online, you need to get a good computer that has access to a stable internet connection.
  • You also need to have at least some interest in the sport you plan to participate in.
  • Afterward, find a hosting site that offers the fantasy sports services. Yahoo and ESPN are some of the great hosting sites you may want to try out.
  • Get some friends to join you. Ten is usually a great number to start off your league. If you’re not able to find enough friends or people to participate in your league, you can always adjust the size of the league to include fewer people.
  • Name your virtual team. You can name your team anything, don’t be afraid to get creative. However, you want to avoid anything offensive.
  • Select a commissioner for the league. The league commissioner is the guy who will oversee the proceedings of the league. He will determine when to hold the draft, the draft order, the scoring system, and even how the trades will occur.
  • Once you have completed all the above steps, you can now start the league and see who wins.

This would be the perfect time to try and join one of the fantasy sports genres and see how it works out for you. Chances are you’ll have a blast.

 

Popular Fantasy Sports

Like professional sports, fantasy sports are also divided into different categories. The most common ones include:

  • Fantasy football
  • Fantasy basketball
  • Fantasy baseball
  • Fantasy cricket daily fantasy sport
  • Fantasy cricket

Here’s a rundown of each category:

  • Fantasy Football

Fantasy football may be the most played fantasy game overall. It has many participants who also serve as general managers for some awesome virtual football teams. First, participants must select their team roasters in a draft that is overseen by the commissioner as mentioned earlier. Here, real football stars are available for you to choose from. Fantasy football also consists of three different categories. They include:

  • Fantasy football (American)
  • Fantasy football (Association)
  • Fantasy football (Australian football)

 

  • Daily Fantasy Football

This fantasy sport is played across shorter periods of time. For example, it can go for only a week of a season instead of the whole season. Daily fantasy games are usually played as contests and are subject to the entry fee. There is also the administrative fee which is partially collected as revenue as well for the service. Daily fantasy sports emerged in 2007 when Fantasy Football Live was launched. Since then, it has experienced explosive growth as a fantasy sports option.

 

  • Fantasy Basketball

If you’re a hoops fan, this is the fantasy sport for you. It was popularized in the 1990s with the advent of the internet. Here, the player takes the role of the general manager of the fantasy team. The player does virtually everything from drafting his players who are actual National Basketball Association players. The drafted player’s overall stats in the game correspond to their actual real-life stats. The stats are computed by the gaming software to level the playing field. You can find and play this fantasy sport in host sites like ESPN fantasy sports, Yahoo, and NBA.com. For a standard virtual team, you’ll have 12 team players. Most managers will sometimes draft 13 players while others include up to 14 players. Extra players are included as reserves in case of injury.

 

  • Fantasy Baseball

In this fantasy sport, previously called “tabletop baseball,” new formats have appeared. This new format can combine the sport to be a traditional points-based competition. And this has also helped facilitate real-time player trading. In fantasy baseball, as with the other fantasy sports, you also find that the player stats in the virtual game match those of the real players in the real games. The participants then compete to score points. The more points you collect, the higher your chances of winning the competition.

 

  • Fantasy Cricket

This is another fantasy sport that has tons of fans all around the world. Like the other fantasy games, the starts of the virtual players are similar to the actual real-life players who play professional sports. Participants must work their way to the top by attaining the most points in the league or tournament.

Bottom Line

As you can see from above, fantasy sports offers a number of options. It’s an intriguing sport you can easily pick up as a hobby. Plus, you can enjoy fantasy sports from anywhere with your friends and family members. Try your hand at fantasy sport today. I would recommend starting with the sport you love in real life. Who knows, you may even win some extra cash!

By Christopher Kay