Hack: Tiger's Triumph "A Scene Golf Needed"

Tiger's roar at Augusta National was more than a decade in the making

The DA Show
April 15, 2019 - 1:06 pm

It had been more than a decade since the golf world witnessed Tiger Woods pumping his fists in celebration of a major championship – and 14 years since he did so at Augusta National.

That’s what made Sunday so special.

“You have to think about the venue, and this is Tiger’s career basically coming full circle right before our eyes,” Golf Channel analyst Damon Hack said on The DA Show. “At 43 years of age, he’s become Arnold Palmer and Jack Nicklaus rolled into one. The roars of awe and appreciation – and really, love. I think that’s really the overriding sentiment of yesterday was seeing how much the gallery and the patrons missed having Tiger (at the) height of power. 

“A new generation of fans who heard about it or maybe hadn’t seen it for a decade – to be able to usher him home in the way that he was basically able to salt that tournament away, it was very reminiscent of Tiger being the puppet master, the chess master, letting the other players blink and make the mistakes. It was just a scene that the golf world needed and will never forget.”

One must wonder, though: is the admiration for Tiger rooted in nostalgia for his once-dominant play, or were people captivated by the comeback story following Tiger’s fall from grace?

“I think it’s an interesting combination of both,” Hack said. “I think the vulnerability aspect of it has made Tiger more reliable. When you talk about the dissolution of a marriage or the back surgery, the receding hair line – whatever you want to call it, whatever (aspect) you want to (focus on), Tiger Woods has been rendered human in the last decade.”

The infidelity. The divorce. The surgeries. The pain.

It was a lot.

“This super hero without a cape brought to his knees, embarrassed, humiliated, ridiculed,” Hack said. "And to have that same guy somehow climb the mountain – first back to respectability, then back to the winner’s circle a year ago at East Lake, to think that he could go one better against these workout warriors who hit it 30 yards past him, that he could somehow outfox and outwit them on a Masters Sunday, this was almost too good to be true. 

“There’s definite nostalgia for his ability to turn back the clock,” Hack continued, “which people hoped for but didn’t necessarily believe would happen. And then also the appreciation of a guy who’s much more relatable and much more vulnerable and much closer to what the rest of us deal with in our lives on a daily basis.”