Well, at least as much as one can reasonably expect. His victory at Memorial was very impressive: he birdied three of the last four holes to eke out the win.
THIS is the way Tiger used to win: he kept himself in the hunt, and found ways to “bring it” down the stretch.
Does this mean he’s going to start dominating the majors again? Not sure, but–let’s be honest here–he will be a threat if he plays like this.
Yes, his driving distance has dropped since he blew out his knee and had surgery in 2008. This has taken a lot of his prior advantage away.
Yes, his competition has improved, and no longer fears him. This has made winning more difficult at a time when he is no longer the dominator he once was.
Yes, the aging process is taking its toll on him. He has had knee surgeries; he no longer averages 300+ yards off the tee; his short game has declined; his body is not what it was 15 years ago.
Still, golf is a sport that does not require stellar physical fitness to win.
Tennis requires great fitness, as does professional football and basketball. Golf, not so much. Ray Floyd and Craig Stadler were notorious for their girth, and were always major threats. Even the Golden Bear–Nicklaus–had a gut on him. Tiger no longer has the fitness of a Navy SEAL, but, then again, he doesn’t need that level of fitness either.
And even with his health issues, make no mistake: Tiger is still one of the fittest players on the Tour. Having said that, at this stage of his career, the mental aspects of the game are going to either make it or break it for him.
He can–and will–be a contender in the major tournaments. He proved today–with a very competitive field–that he can win in tough situations. Get him in the 4th round of the U.S. Open, with 5 holes remaining and down by two strokes, and the smart money will be on Tiger.
This year, he now has two victories. While he has not made great runs in the majors this year, days like this will help him gain that confidence he once had.
And in golf, THAT is where tournaments are won and lost.