Mon May 17 03:55pm EDT
Tiger Woods and his former swing coach Hank Haney have gone their separate ways, and Haney is now speaking out on his perception of what's wrong in Tiger's world. And according to Haney, there's plenty.
"It was a tough decision, one I went back and forth on many times," said the 54-year-old Dallas-based instructor, one day after announcing that he and Woods were finished as teacher and pupil. "I sent him a text. I wished him the best and told him I hope he finds someone else to help him. He first responded, 'thanks.' Then two seconds later he said again, 'we're just taking a break right?' I told him 'no, we're done.' When all is said and done, I'm better off out of it. That's the bottom line. It is a huge weight off my shoulders."
Haney also pointed out that Woods' poorer finishes under his tutelage -- relatively speaking, of course -- could be attributed as much to poor putting as to poor driving. Huggan, who freely admits to being Haney's friend, notes that Woods' driving difficulties could be attributable to tighter fairways, but again, take that with a grain of Augusta bunker sand.
Oh, but the swing woes aren't what's going to draw the most notice. Haney confirmed once and for all that Woods was being treated for sex addiction during his time away from the game in early 2010. "It's an ongoing day-to-day battle, but so far I think he's doing a really good job," Haney said. "He's making progress. Hopefully he'll be able to do what he needs to do."
More importantly for the long-term state of Woods' game, Haney supported Woods' contention that Woods' dealings with Dr. Anthony Galea did not involve the use of performance-enhancing drugs. Haney was at four of the five sessions Woods had with Galea.
"There was never anything that went into Tiger Woods' body that didn't come out of his body," Haney said in an unnecessarily graphic quote. "I spent 110 days with Tiger a year for six years. I spent probably 40 to 50 nights a year at his house. I've never seen him do any (performance-enhancing drugs). He has never talked about anything."
Regardless of the rather unconventional and highly public exit interview, Haney's departure means more upheaval in Woods' world. And obviously, this is all more fuel for the Tiger haters. Tiger's supporters will try to paint Haney as bitter, trying to get in one last shot at his former client. Perhaps that's the case; perhaps Haney quit just before he could get fired. As always, Woods' silence means that people leap -- or are led -- to their own conclusions.