I’m sorry that I’ve not posted until late today although frankly I could have written this immediately after the conclusion of The Masters. If you love sports at all and didn’t watch the final round, shame on you because you really missed one of the best, most compelling afternoons I can remember in any sport. What struck me beyond that, however, was the huge difference between the man who has won 14 major championships and the kid who is still trying to win his first. The former put on a great performance that ultimately proved to be too little too late. The latter blew a lead and his chance to win and yet he taught the older guy a lesson.
When Tiger Woods came off the course, he was tied for the lead but had also missed a few short putts that would have made beating him that much more difficult. While I don’t think his lead would have held up even had he made those putts, at the time he was winning. He was interviewed as were all other competitors who were at the top of the leader board. Unlike them, he was downright nasty. Frosty doesn’t begin to explain the negative vibes he was putting out. Rory McIlroy, on the other hand, had just suffered thought 2 hours of agony but was gracious, warm, and mature.
There is an old expression – show me a good loser and I’ll show you a loser. There is no question that all Tiger lives for is to win major golf championships and he hasn’t done that in several years. I get the disappointment. But despite what some may say, athletes – particularly those that sell video games to kids – are role models. Being the greatest of all time in a sport means, in my mind, demonstrating human skills to go with your athletic skills. Humble in victory, gracious in defeat, I suppose.
This is why Tiger may hold more records than other golfers but in my mind he’ll never be the best that ever was.