Tiger Woods sets career mark at Bridgestone

Tiger Woods shot a five over par 77 on the final day of the WGC Bridgestone Invitational. His four-day total of 18 over par is his worst showing at a PGA 72 hole event, both as a pro and as an amateur.

Playing with Anthony Kim in Sunday’s final round, Woods hit shots that some observers thought were amateurish, not just poor. Kim came in two shots better than Tiger on the day.

Speaking to media after the round, Kim opined that once Tiger’s personal life gets in order, we will all see the return of the king.

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Has he hit bottom yet? Fans can only wonder if even Tiger Woods knows the answer to that question.

His highly anticipated return to the 2010 PGA Tour began with a fourth place at the 2010 Masters. It’s hard to remember after this weekend’s showing that he actually shot 11 under par at Augusta National.

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Tiger watchers thought him a bit rusty and lacking in his short game. What would they give for him to seem that rusty four months into his season?

His game seems to have fallen off a cliff in the last thirty days. At The Open Championship in St. Andrews, he managed a three under par for the tournament. It looks like a respectable showing now in hindsight.

Woods’ embarrassing fall from grace off the golf course has now turned into a full blown downward spiral on the golf course. Some athletes can play themselves through turbulence and scandal. Kobe Bryant is one example of that.

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Flying in from a full day at a Colorado criminal courthouse, the Lakers star shot the lights out within hours after getting off a plane and arriving at Staples Center.

For Tiger it is different. There are no teammates to encourage him and share the burden of winning. His personal life is completely different than it was only eight short months ago and golfers can be creatures of habit.

What seems more embarrassing now, his robot-like press conference or this weekend’s tournament results? Hard to tell at this point.

Some have derisively suggested that he go back to his womanizing days to find comfort in what seemed to be the only outlet he had when he wasn’t playing golf. Who is to say what will work but one thing is for sure, nothing is working now.

Used with permission of the author.

Paula Duffy is a national sports columnist for Examiner.com and the Huffington Post and regularly comments on sports/legal matters for radio affiliates of ESPN and Fox Sports. She founded the sports information site, Incidental Contact, is the author of a line of audio books designed for sports novices and in her spare time practices law in Los Angeles. 

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