TIGER WOODS: PGA TOUR 2011 PREVIEW

I’m going to make an effort to make this a series that hits on all of the eligible players in some fashion, plus some key European players. That’s the goal. In reality, I will probably fall well short of that, but we will see.

Tiger Woods is the obvious starting point. Much of the talk about who is the world’s best golfer via the OWGR’s is complete garbage. Tiger did not have the best season, so if you want to reward that, feel free to put Stricker, Westwood or Kuchar as the No. 1.

If, however, you want to project who will be the world’s best golfer tomorrow, it’s still Tiger.

CAREER MAP:

Tiger’s 2010 is almost certainly affected by personal issues. The odds of Tiger, based on his career level of play, playing that poorly for 45 rounds are somewhere in the 55,000,000,000,000,000,000,000-to-one area. (I’m not even sure what that number is.) Obviously, looking back at some of the divorce/family situation and Tiger’s apparent lack of concern for playing in anything other than a major this season, I think we can safely assume he was distracted, did not give this season his full attention.

The key with Tiger is his effort. If he puts as much focus, attention and practice into the next 14 years of his career that he did his first 14 then there is absolutely no reason to think he is not in the 98% range of breaking Jack. If he decides he wants to spend more time with his kids and treats the rest of his career like he did 2010, then it’s quite unlikely he would break Jack’s record.

I don’t know Tiger and have no reasonable insight into how he will approach the game of golf going forward, so I can only add a guess. It seems that in the closing part of the season, Tiger’s game returned more consistently-though not 100%-and he seemed to have a passion for the game that was not there circa Quail Hollow Invitational.

If that’s the case, there is no reason to think Tiger won’t return to close to 2006-2009 levels. Will he ever be as good as that? Probably not, but that’s okay, considering that was the highest sustained level of golf anyone has ever played. Even making it to 95% of that, would leave Tiger as by far the best golfer in the world and a great chance of breaking Jack.

2011 PROJECTION:

BETTER THAN 2010: 100%

KEEPS HIS CARD: 100%

Z-SCORE: -1.05

ST. DEV: .90

ODDS OF WINNING A MAJOR (Assumes above ranking): 15.30%

Average played (Based on above ranking and PGA Tour exemption category): 4

DISTRIBUTION*

 

At least one

48.444%

No majors

51.556%

one major

37.050%

two majors

10.116%

three majors

1.218%

four majors

0.060%

*50,000 sims

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