If you would for a moment, think back to the 2000 PGA Championship, when Tiger Woods was battling an unknown golfer named Bob May. Tiger had won two major championships in a row but was on the ropes against this guy that shouldn't have been there.
May was in control on the final hole on Sunday, when Woods hit his tee shot so far left on the 18th at Valhalla (another Jack Nicklaus design) that it wasn't even in grass. The announcers couldn't believe where Tiger's drive was heading. The fans were dumbfounded. The ball wasn't going to be playable. But, lo and behold, Tiger's ball started bouncing backwards, a break that allowed him to win his third major championship. As Lefty Gomez used to say, "I'd rather be lucky than good."
The last seven months have been anything but lucky for Tiger. He messed up with his family. He's struggled with his golf game. He's had moments in interviews where you just didn't feel he was ever going to change. The thing is, Tiger has always been able to catch the breaks on the golf course.
Thursday at the Memorial was one of those days when Tiger didn't get the breaks we are so used to seeing. On the par-4 sixth hole, Tiger was playing a second shot from just over 180 yards out of the rough. On the wrong side off the tee, Tiger was playing it safe to the fat part of the green, and executed the shot like he wanted to. He started walking to the green just as his ball was coming out of the sky, only to find a sprinkler head, bounce not only over the green, but over the spectators.
The result was a chunked third shot, a par chip that raced by the cup and, as only Tiger has been able to do, a bogey putt that somehow found the left lip and dropped in.
Tiger finished at even-par as everyone else seemed to be going low at the Memorial, and currently isn't even close to being a factor at the tournament he's won four times in his career.
Are the breaks going to stop going Tiger's way? Nobody knows that, but on Thursday, it sure seemed the golf gods had given up on Mr. Woods.