It is not only an achievement but something more than that.
He had said, “I’m done,” but as it turned out, he wasn’t.
After Tiger Woods walked off the Master’s course on Palm Sunday, hugged his children, and put on the winner’s green jacket for the fifth time, Woods said, “It fits.” He smiled, and the redemptive arc seemed complete.
A friend texted “Greatest comeback ever … except for Easter,” to L. Gregory Jones, dean of Duke Divinity School in Durham, North Carolina.
“Do you believe in redemption? YES!” actor Rob Lowe enthused on Twitter.
The victory electrified not only golf fans but casual observers of the Woods saga, which began when he crashed his car the night of Thanksgiving in 2009, leading to revelations of serial infidelity, the breakup of his marriage and years of struggle to overcome sex addiction and debilitating back pain.
Woods won Masters at weekend after a decade of struggle, Jordan and Woods’ friendship forged on sporting greatness
Michael Jordan, who famously came back from retirement to add to his haul of NBA titles, has paid tribute to Tiger Woods’s return to the peak of golf.
Jordan and Woods forged a friendship through their shared experiences as two of the most famous athletes in the world, although the relationship has been strained in recent years. However, in an interview with the Athletic published on Thursday, Jordan hailed Woods’s victory at the Masters last weekend.
“I never thought he’d get back physically,” Jordan told the Athletic after Woods won his first major since 2008. “He didn’t think he’d get back physically. But he did it. No one expected him to be back the way he is now. He’s probably the only person who believed he could get back. To me, that’s a major accomplishment. To me, it’s unbelievable. Mentally, you always think you can. But you can’t answer to what your body has to deal with. … To me, it was the greatest comeback I’ve ever seen.”
Woods has battled numerous injuries, as well as problems away from golf, over the last decade and many – including Woods himself – feared his career was over.
“I took two years off to play baseball, but nothing like that,” said Jordan, who returned to the NBA in 1996 to win three more titles with the Chicago Bulls. “I’m pretty sure he questioned himself, whether he could get it back, and he had to put a lot of work in. But he took it head-on. He had to change his game; he had to change his perspective a little bit. Dealing with his emotions, obviously, he believed in himself. But until you put that into action, sometimes it’s a struggle. I think he’s gotten over the hump. I think he’s going to win more. It’s tough mentally. It’s absolutely tough mentally. And then you think about the physical. I’m elated.”
Woods is now 43 but Jordan, who played until he was 40, believes others on the PGA Tour have plenty to fear. “They got problems,” Jordan said. “His confidence is only going to build from here. The unknown is the biggest thing. You don’t know what Tiger’s capable of doing. He’s won a tour event [the Tour Championship]. He’s won the Masters. He’s won a major.”
Woods now has 15 majors, three behind Jack Nicklaus’s record of 18.