In fact, my buddy Bob Madden said to me by phone, "the only person rooting harder against Tiger right now, is Elin."
I was rooting against him WAY harder than she was!
After all, that $100 million divorce settlement allows you to not hold much of a grudge.
Some folks wondered on twitter: "why such a hater?"
Well, for starters, rooting "against" in sports is a time honored tradition. Every passionate fan I know, has "their" team, and a team they mortally rooted against - always!
Tiger Woods is the Yankees, the Cowboys, and Duke basketball wrapped into one.
What, we're all supposed to fall in line, and root for that? Why?
Tiger, pre-crash, had been, amazing, incredible, unbeatable.
And now, he's none of that, he's just a prick.
A totally unlikable, insincere, pouty, club slamming, f-bomb dropping, front-running jerk.
They say "winning is the best deodorant" in sports. Right now, Tiger smells like crap.
When he wins again - and he will, including two more majors before it is all done I predict - that's not going to make it all better. In fact, I believe he'll be an even bigger prick, scolding us "haters" in the media that "he told us so" and what not.
For the record, here's WHY I hate Tiger Woods.
1. He's a CON.
I don't hate Tiger because he cheated on his wife. I hate him because of the fraud he perpetrated on the public, about being a wonderful family man. The constant references to the importance of family and kids. The photo shoots with him and Elin, with the kids and the family dog. Whatever. Meanwhile he was banging letters F-Q in Rachel Uchitel's little red book. Nobody likes being conned. It's basically the same as being lied to. You don't even have to believe the lie, to feel disrespected.
2. He's a front runner.
Anybody can look good when winning. Seeing how people react when they lose says alot more. Well, we've seen Tiger's act. He's an awful loser. As bad as LeBron when things don't go his way. Oh, he'll shake hands, but that's about it. Crappy post round interviews. Nary a positive word about his competitors. And often, he'll just make delusional excuses instead of just being honest (i.e. "I played great, I just didn't make a putt.").
3. He doesn't play with joy, he plays with anger.
It's okay for an athlete to use "the dark side" as motivation. To use perceived snubs to inspire themselves to an even greater level. Hell, Nicklaus famously did just that 25 years ago when that sports writer in Atlanta called him "washed up." But Jack that day, played with brilliance, class, and joy. Tiger played angry Sunday. The over-the-top eagle fist pump and yell was absurd on #8. It was like he furiously mashed x-button-right-trigger on his EA Sports video game to activate his "trademark" reaction to big shots. Tiger only seems to smile at the prospect of putting his foot on his competitors throat, not at the magic moments the game provides. This does not inspire me.
4. He doesn't respect the game.
A lot has been made of Tiger dropping f-bombs on camera, and his club tossing. This is bad. But let's put all that aside. When Tiger bangs the tightly mown, manicured turf behind the 13th green as he did on Sunday, it shows what a real prick he is. Any golfer knows, that having a good lie for shot like that is crucial. Crucial! And all it takes, is a little crease from a 56 degree Vokey in that turf, and you are screwed. The chances are slim somebody else would roll into his damaged spot, but the chance remained. Unacceptable. Raking the green at Pinehurst at the US Open. This is nothing new for him.
5. He gives so little back to the game.
This guy has signed the fewest autographs of any golf superstar in the last 50 years. He plays a ridiculously limited PGA Tour schedule. He plays the same events every year. He refuses to give tournaments adequate advance notice of his schedule. He doesn't play the Par-3 contest at the Masters. He treated the Ryder Cup like a week long root canal for years. Tiger's modus operandi? "What's in it for me?"
6. The TV announcers and networks never stop washing his balls.
Okay, this one I guess you can't hang on Tiger himself, but it just adds to the in-sufferability. At least Feherty admits to being in the tank for Tiger. Guys like Peter Kostis are more pathetic. Kostis was allegedly "banned" by Tiger from doing interviews with him on CBS, because years ago he had been mildly critical of Tiger's swing changes. Seeing this as a direct threat to his livelyhood - and correctly so - Kostis has since gone 180 degrees the other way, and openly roots for the swoosh on every telecast. If five guys are 3 shots back on Sunday, every broadcaster frames it as "can Tiger catch him" and they just throw away the rest. ESPN is just as bad. On Sunday, the "Lead" item on their bottom of the screen ticker read (and I'm not making this up): "McIlroy extends lead, Woods seven shots back." Someday, should the unthinkable happen, a headline will read like this: "Tiger Woods Reportedly Safe, After Meteor Strike Wipes Out East Coast."
7. He Treats People Like Shit
Fluff Cowan starts to get too "famous" for being Tiger's lovable caddy. Get out. Butch Harmon coaches him to the "Tiger Slam" and he reportedly got paid just $50,000 by Tiger on a $10 million plus earnings year. Harmon fired. Hank Haney scapegoated last spring, was left to twist in the wind, before he had to walk the plank and "resign" as his teacher. Elin. Kostis. Tim Finchem. Every photographer who ever clicked him in a backswing. Dirt under his cleats. The pattern repeats and repeats. People are disposable to this guy.
That said, he's an incredible golfer. Still. But his brilliance, undeniable, leaves me cold. Just like LeBron. The guy is a freak. Amazing. But who wants to root for that? Not me.
To quote Jerry Maquire: "This is not what inspires people."