What Do Tiger's 2009 Stats Say
By Kickntrue on 4/21/09
Tiger has a couple rounds under his belt. How do his stats compare to previous years? Shane Bacon, blogging over at FanHouse has done the research and the evidence is clear. Despite the fact that Tiger has won an event, he's not the same player (yet).
"The stat that Tiger usually kills the tour with is greens in regulation ("GIR"). The last three seasons he has averaged 71 percent or higher, ranking at the top of the tour each of the three years. This season, with the new knee, he is 80th on tour, hitting just 140 greens of the 216 holes he has played. That number is probably the most telling of his "struggles," if you will. Tiger missed the green with some shots at the Masters that normally are nestling very close the flagstick. I'm not sure if you can pin his struggles with GIR to anything but just a little bit of a slump, because Tiger had plenty of time in his rehab to work on his 8-iron through wedge game, the clubs he normally uses going into most par-4s.It's early folks. He's still coming back... but interesting.
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Tim Horan says:
My observation in the Masters was that he looked comfortable with his swing but he did not look focused until the 12th hole on the final day. Something sparked a change in him (possibly a belief that he could win it)and he started to fire on all cylinders. I am sure that it is only a matter of time (75% of the way thru this season)and we will see him back at the top of his physical and mental game.
What it tells me is that he can play bad compared to his best and still be in the hunt, which shows how he is far and above everyone else when he is on his own game.
@GolfSmith7...I agree. He has been at the top of the leaderboard in the tourneys he has played so far but down in the rankings for his stats. Once everything starts clicking the old Tiger will be back. As dedicated as he is it was probably very hard for him to turn off the golf segment of his life and focus on rehabilating his knee. Then he needs to turn it back on immediality to get back in the hunt or people start looking into why he isn't playing up to his 100% potential. It's going to take several months for him to get used to playing on tpur again. Lets be fair and look at these stats at the end of the year for a better idea on how he is doing.
I think it is the mental, competitive aspect that is causing the drop in stats. You can only be so motivated on the range. That Sunday round at the Masters appears to have registered in his brain and now, if he truly is going to return to the OLD TIGER, is the time you will see the improvements and the wins. He was playing at a level only a handful of golfers in history have ever reached. Tough to regain that, but i believe he will regain that level and may even surpass it.
I'm still not a fan. He needs to do more for me than hit the ball. Image is perception.
The very unique thing about Tiger is that the stats really don't matter for him. He was the leader in GIR while being at the bottom of fairways hit for quite some time, which means he doesn't need to hit the fairway in order to hit the green. That's a pretty amazing fact. Can you imagine playing against him in a match and watching him spray the ball all over the place from the tee, and still hit the green more than you? There is one undeniable fact about Tiger, if he's making his putts it's a done deal. On Sunday at the Masters he was making par putts, which when you're not winning isn't doing you any good. The other unique quality he has is the ability to make a crucial putt when he needs to, as we saw with Kenny Perry, not everyone has that ability. If I've said it once, I've said it a million times, on the tour it's all about putting, all the other stats are just background noise.
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