Tiger Woods: the best there ever was?

Discussion in 'Archive: The Arena' started by CitizenKane, Aug 5, 2007.

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  1. CitizenKane Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Aug 7, 2004
    star 3
    I looked through the thread index and was stunned to find no one discussing Tiger Woods or PGA Golf.

    Another win for Tiger today at Bridgestone popped the question in my head: is Tiger the best golfer there ever was? And where does he rank with all time great athletes?



    Discuss.
  2. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2001
    star 8
    Jack is still the best. Let's see Woods win the greatest tournament of all at age 46, and then finish sixth at age 58 (with an early push in the final round that got the crowds roaring at Augusta).
  3. deltron_zero Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 1, 2002
    star 6
    i agree that it's to early to give him the title, but i think we will before it's all said and done.
  4. Kyptastic VIP

    Member Since:
    Sep 10, 2005
    star 5
    Much like Federer, we have to wait until he finishes his career before we start calling him the greatest or comparing him to past greats. He might never win another tournament, or quit tomorrow because he lost the passion.

    That said, he's definately going to considered to be up there with the best that have played the game, without a doubt.
  5. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2001
    star 8
    It's important to realize just how good Nicklaus was before annointing Tiger. Eighteen majors, the last one at age 46, plus a record number of runner-up finishes.

    "He plays a game with which I am not familiar," Sam Snead once said of him.
  6. Rogue...Jedi Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jan 12, 2000
    star 7
    And coming from Snead, thats saying something.
  7. DarthIntegral Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 13, 2005
    star 7
    Tiger is, IMO, without a doubt the second greatest golfer of all time, and has the opportunity to become #1.
  8. Darth Dark Helmet Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Dec 27, 1999
    star 6
    Tiger is the best golfer I have been able to witness. I never saw Jack play in his prime. Right now, Nicklaus is #1, simply because of the record. But Tiger will, in all likelihood, break that record. Unless something huge happens to him, some freak accident that ends his career, Tiger will break Jack's record. Tiger's A game is just so far and above any player on tour right now, we saw that last Sunday. And when he's not completely on his A game, he's still good enough to go T2, T2, T12 in Majors.
  9. Armenian_Jedi Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 14, 2003
    star 7
    Yeah, KnightWriter's right, you can't be the greatest until you can prove you can play at an old age.

    :rolleyes:



    :p
  10. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2001
    star 8
    Well, he just maintained his skill at a relatively advanced age for a golfer, and his finishing sixth in 1998 at the age of 58 was phenomenal. He had a chance to win it if a few putts and such had broken his way. That would have made the 1986 win seem quaint.
  11. deltron_zero Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 1, 2002
    star 6
    another major for tiger today. to me, he seems destined to blow by by nicklaus. how do you not give him the title "best ever" if that happens?
  12. Onoto Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 7, 2004
    star 5
    Even if he retired tomorrow, I'd still give Tiger the crown. He's dominated the past decade in a way no player in any sport has. Even guys like Sandy Koufax, Babe Ruth, Jou Louis, and Muhammad Ali didn't utterly destroy their competition the way TIger has.

    You know what the scary thing is? He's changed his swing multiple times. How many hitters can say that change their swing and continue to dominate? How many pitchers can change their motions? Tiger isn't the same player he was when his reign began, but I think that's the most impressive thing about him.
  13. DarthIntegral Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 13, 2005
    star 7
    The only thing that gives me pause is the argument of the amazing number of second place finishes in a major that Nicklaus had. Not sure I buy that argument (or the argument it seems to support, that competition for Jack was better), but it's out there and at least gives me pause. Now, if Tiger ends up blowing the record away with something like 25, then there's no longer even a pause.
  14. Rogue...Jedi Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jan 12, 2000
    star 7
    To put it briefly: right now, no. However, by the end of his career I strongly suspect he will have firmly established that title. He is obviously, however, among those greatest of all time already.
  15. JediCouncilMember Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 15, 2003
    star 4
    I think he probably already is the best ever and if he keeps up his pace of about 1 major a year and ties/passes Jack when he is 36/37 that will just make it "official".

    I don't think he needs to pass Jack to be the best ever, but I really can't see how he won't (if he stays reasonably healthy). He's got about 10 years of Golf Playing Prime left and probably about 15 yrs of being able to sneak a win as a sentimental favorite when he hits 44, 45 ala Jack.

    I think he'll end up with 20+ majors, basically keeping the same pace until he reaches 40.
  16. Darth Dark Helmet Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Dec 27, 1999
    star 6
    Win #62 today, and at 32 he's five years younger then anyone else above him when they won their 62nd.

    Oh yeah, he also dominated the course and the field. That chip he hit on 9(I think, out of the back rough, from a very wet drop) was just a sick golf shot.

    Tiger's set for a big year.
  17. JMJacenSolo Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2006
    star 4
    That "never won a major he wasn't leading going into Sunday" has to be at least a small knock against him, right? At least for the time being.
  18. Darth Dark Helmet Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Dec 27, 1999
    star 6
    The more of them he wins, the less of an issue that becomes. Even with that stat he's won more majors then only a small handful of golfers.
  19. DarthIntegral Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 13, 2005
    star 7
    I love Tiger Woods for a lot of reasons. But, perhaps my favorite among them is I can very easily see myself in many years, sitting with grandchildren and talking about how I remember when Tiger Woods did this, that, and something else, and how I knew when it was happening I was witnessing something, and someone, special and once-in-a-generation.
  20. DRHJ9 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 19, 2003
    star 4

    I thought you of all people would be ready to say Tiger is the best. You said Tom Brady was the best, and he has not finished his career. In fact, you took exactly the opposite stance in the NFL thread. So do we look at greatness today, or wait to put their careers in context when they retire?:confused:

    You are right about Tiger Wodds by the way:p He has to break Jack's Major record of 17 before he is the best.


  21. Rogue...Jedi Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jan 12, 2000
    star 7
    To put it briefly: right now, no. However, by the end of his career I strongly suspect he will have firmly established that title. He is obviously, however, among those greatest of all time already.

    I stand by what I said last year. Theres only one thing that could change that this year, and thats if he was to win all 4 majors this year, in which case I would go ahead and give him the title of the best ever. That said, I do not expect him to pull such off. 2 or 3 majors, quite possibly, but not all 4.
  22. George_Roper Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 1, 2005
    star 7
    Tiger's the best. There's really no denying it. Just look at what he's done in the last 3 years alone. I think it surpasses any 3 year stretch in Jack's entire career. Plus he's held all 4 at once. Sure you can argue that as it stands Jack at the top for longer (roughly 2 decades) but he never dominated to the degree that Tiger has. 18 is going to seem like a small number when Tiger's done.
  23. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2001
    star 8
    I think Jack had much stronger competition to deal with on a regular basis. He also finished second a record number of times, so he piled up a lot of near-misses. To me, the clincher for him still being the greatest was the 1986 run, which in my view still ranks as one of the most remarkable feats in sports history. The field he blew by was stellar, and Norman would have won that Masters if not for Nicklaus.

    Tiger will probably be thought of as the best ever when he's 40, but I'd still like my chances in a head to head between he and Jack at his peak. Certainly no worse than even odds.

    I thought you of all people would be ready to say Tiger is the best. You said Tom Brady was the best, and he has not finished his career. In fact, you took exactly the opposite stance in the NFL thread. So do we look at greatness today, or wait to put their careers in context when they retire?


    Just depends on the circumstances. I don't think Brady is the best ever, just one of the top three.
  24. George_Roper Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 1, 2005
    star 7
    I think he would have had an even more impressive record number of second place finishes if he had had to compete against Tiger...oh...

    I don't really buy the argument that he had much stronger competition. Tiger can't be faulted for just completely dominating the sport.

    And as for 1986, sure it's impressive but others have won at a similar age and Norman is a serial choker. I fully expect to see Tiger competing regularly and winning in his 40's.
  25. yankee8255 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 31, 2005
    star 6
    Can't agree on your competition argument. Golf is far more of a world-wide sport these days. Granted Nicklaus did have the likes of Gary Player to contend with, but foreign players, with the exception of a few Brits, were almost non-existent in his day. Woods has gotten from guys like Els, Singh, Olazabel and many, many more. The only counterargument I'd make is that Jack had to take on Arnie when he first came up, then Watson later in his career. None of Woods competitors are as good as those two.

    I'm a huge Jack fan, and still think of him as the greatest golfer ever, but at this point my argument would largely be based on longevity. Woods dominance of the sport is unreal, and unprecedented.
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