Tiger Woods out: Tiger Woods Golf

Published: September 20, 2015

Tiger Woods out: Tiger Woods Golf, News of Tiger Woods undergoing a second surgery on his troublesome back caught his colleagues by surprise.

Reading that Woods vowed to return to the PGA Tour instead of cruising off into the sunset aboard his yacht named “Privacy” didn’t surprise anyone.

“As a competitor, you want to go out on your own terms,” Billy Horschel said Saturday before the third round of the BMW Championship at Conway Farms Golf Club. “He wants to go out on his own terms where he gave it his best shot. He knows he can still compete and everyone out here knows he can still compete with the best of us.

“That’s what pushes him.”

Woods, 39, who has played only 18 events since the start of 2014 and had microdiscectomy surgery on his back March 31 of last year, announced Friday via his website he had a second microdiscectomy surgery on his back on Wednesday to remove a small disk fragment that was pinching a nerve.

Woods said he was hopeful for a return in “early 2016.”

Woods said he felt discomfort in his back and hip during the Wyndham Championship last month, where he got into contention and finished in a tie for 10th. It was a rare good showing for the former world No. 1, who has 79 PGA Tour titles, including 14 majors, but hasn’t won since the 2013 WGC-Bridgestone Invitational and is ranked No. 283.

“He needs to get healthy,” Horschel said. “This game needs him. Everyone in the game knows he’s the biggest draw in the game.”

For instance, at the Wyndham Championship in Greensboro, N.C. – Woods’ last event – tournament officials said attendance reached 145,000 for the week to set a modern tournament record. Sales of concessions and clothing were up 40 to 50%. TV ratings climbed, too – Saturday’s 3.2 rating on CBS was 220% higher compared to 2014; Sunday’s 3.9 was 160% higher.

“I hope this is the last of it. We all want him back healthy and playing well and playing a lot and hopefully this is the start of it,” Zach Johnson said. “He’s a competitor first and he just loves being in it and that’s what we all play for. I do really like the game of golf. I honestly don’t know if I love it like I once did but I love the competition and I think that’s how Tiger feels.

“Knowing Tiger and what he has done on the golf course, that’s what fuels him. That’s what drives him to get back out here at his best.”

Rickie Fowler and Woods participated in a Q&A with sponsors and fans at the Deutsche Bank Championship, the second leg of the FedExCup Playoffs. Woods, who didn’t qualify for the postseason, was there because the tournament benefits his foundation.

“I knew he hasn’t been 100%. Hopefully everything is cleaned up and he continues to move forward and this is another step in the process for him to get as healthy as possible. He still has some pretty good years left,” Fowler said. “In the Q&A, he talked about being in contention at the Wyndham and said it was cool to be back in that position and get those juices flowing again.

“He loves to be in contention against the best players in the world and ultimately he wants to get back to winning and he’s going to do whatever it takes to do that.”

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