Wednesday, September 7th, 2016


Golf Channel Analysts Notable Quotes
Tiger Woods announcing his scheduled return to PGA TOUR competition in October
Wednesday, Sept. 7, 2016

Video: Tiger Woods Statement and Planned Schedule for 2016
Video: NBC Sports golf analyst and Safeway Open tournament host Johnny Miller on Woods’ scheduled return
Video: Golf Channel analyst Notah Begay on Woods’ scheduled return
Video: Golf Channel analyst Mark Rolfing on Woods’ scheduled return           

Johnny Miller, 2016 Safeway Open tournament host and NBC Sports golf analyst, on Woods scheduled to make his return in October at the Safeway Open
Johnny Miller – “A big yes, a screaming yes. We already got a screaming yes by having Phil come, and now we have Phil and Tiger so we are really blessed to start the season off on Golf Channel and the start of the season with those players. Who knows who else might show up.”
Miller – “His iron game has been great. There is nothing wrong his iron game. With his driver, forget maybe trying to kill the ball off the tee. If he can put it in play and just let his irons do the talking. Obviously he is a great putter and a phenomenal competitor. If I was caddying for him I would just say, ‘let the irons do the work for you and your short game.’”
Miller – “Silverado is the perfect course for him because it is so straightforward. There is nothing funky about it. It’s a very straightforward course, sort of his kind of course. A lot like Torrey Pines. I think he’ll love being back in California. If he can get a good first round and get some confidence. Just get some confidence and springboard from there.”
Miller – “Everybody is pulling for him. It is quite an amazing thing to come back from this long layoff. We better have some extra room for all of these people that are going to show up.”
Miller – “He is probably going to be nervous. It is going to be like a young pro just starting out on Tour. Almost like his first career didn’t happen. I had the same thing, I went through a two-and-a-half year slump and I had to sort of get back to basics. It was very nerve wracking after not playing for a while. You just need to get back to basics. Get the ball in the fairway and get the ball on the green. I’m going to try to see him earlier in the week [at Safeway Open]. I was pretty good with my short irons and if he wants a nice lesson for showing up I’ll be happy to do it.”
Miller – “He just needs to keep it simple…I have a feeling he has all of that stuff behind him. He wouldn’t be for three tournaments if he didn’t have all of that behind him. He needs to be reasonably successful and hopefully make the cut and build from there, get back into the swing of things.”
Miller – “I think it is a good place for him to come back. It is sort of low key, it’s a pleasant place, a lot like where he grew up.”
Miller – “You cannot count Tiger Woods out. Talent always comes to the surface if you give it a chance. They always say a great fighter or boxer always has one great fight left in him. I pick him to win 6-8 more tournaments in his second career at least. That is my feeling.”
Miller – “It is going to be super exciting. I’m pretty low key but I’m not low key right now, this is great.”

Golf Channel analyst Notah Begay on Woods’ scheduled return
Notah Begay – “Utterly excited, just like the rest of the golf world.”
Begay – “Today was as good a day as any for Tiger Woods to make the news. It’s great news. We’ve all been eagerly anticipating and hypothesizing on when and where this may happen. I think it is a well thought-out decision, it is a smart decision. I see only good things from here on out with Tiger Woods.”
Begay – “I’ve seen every point through this entire rehabilitation process. I was down in Jupiter and spent some time with Tiger. We drove to pick up his kids at school just a week out from his operation. He wasn’t able to drive yet and we spent some time reflecting on just where he was at in his life and where he was at in his career and did he want to come back. Was it a certainty that he was going to have the motivation, focus, the wherewithal and the sheer will to rehab the way he knew he needed to have to rehab. When you turn 40, you feel it. Tiger’s no different. Having had the surgeries and what not. Seeing him a few months later at the Honda Classic, I stayed with him for about 10 days. A couple of months later we conducted that clinic at Sage Valley and then I just spent some time with him in Jupiter two weeks ago. It has been a steady progression. He has been very diligent and smart in how he is going about it which has been different than the last few times. The last few times he has been so anxious to get back out there and start beating people and winning. It might have been a little too soon. Now I think he has given it its due course. He feels great.”
Begay – “It is not going to be a straight path to success. He has been on the shelf for quite some time. Couldn’t be a better place. Northern California. Stanford country. He’s familiar with the area. Going to get a warm reception up there.”
Begay – “I think the expectation of high level performance, winning, getting into contention as soon as possible is going to be the same, but I think there is going to be a certain level of maturity and forgiveness for himself if he doesn’t get there as quickly as he had in the past.”

Golf Channel analyst Brandel Chamblee on Woods’ scheduled return
Brandel Chamblee – “Its great news for golf. Great news. Golf really does miss Tiger Woods. All sports is star-driven and there is no bigger star in the world of golf or maybe in the world of sports than Tiger Woods, so I was pleasantly surprised.”
Chamblee – “I think in the past he has been the victim of his own talent and success coming back, by his own admission, too early. As he has gotten older and now 40 years of age, the door closes so quickly on middle aged athletes, and especially athletes that have had the injuries that Tiger Woods has had. When you consider all the injuries that he has sustained and all of the surgeries he has sustained, his stated goal of coming back and toppling Jack Nicklaus’ record will be the most compelling story perhaps in all of sports.”
Chamblee – “If he comes back and continues to swing the way he was swinging when he was last playing, I think he will risk injury. There is a far easier way to swing the golf club, in my opinion, than the way he was swinging the golf club…I’m hoping the changes are already successful and are in place.”
Chamblee – “There is the short game problem that was still plaguing him. Even though the last time he played on the PGA TOUR, he had the 36-hole lead and he finished 10th. But the short game problems were there. It has been my experience that I have never seen anybody in professional golf with what I would call the short game yips, overcome them. I’ve never seen it done. I’ve never seen it ever done, in professional golf and amateur golf. If he comes back and overcomes the short game yips, it will be one of the most miraculous transformations I’ve ever seen in the game of golf. Who isn’t pulling for that? I certainly am. There is nothing more exciting than watching Tiger Woods playing golf at his very best.”
Chamblee – “I think the most challenging part in his comeback will be first his short game. You can’t compete on the PGA TOUR unless you have an excellent short game..The next thing is his golf swing. Is it going to allow him to continue to play and practice with the rigorous schedule that you need to have to be competitive. Will it allow him to do that physically. Beyond that, I don’t think he will have any problem. Between the ears, Tiger Woods had no equal. His winning percentage is 24 percent. Nobody had a winning percentage like that. 56 percent of the time he was in the top-10. 37 percent of the time he was first, second or third in his career. He in a lot of ways is the greatest player that has ever played the game and you can match him up physically on the driving range with some of the greatest players and you wouldn’t be able to tell that much difference. It is what he had between the ears, and I think that part will still be there.”

Golf Channel analyst Charlie Rymer on Woods’ scheduled return
Charlie Rymer – “I think it is very exciting news for golf fans…he sets attendance records wherever he goes. From a golf standpoint, If I’m Tiger Woods, I’m looking to be able to play mybest golf in April at the Masters. So what do I have to do to get there? No. 1, he has got to figure out whether he is healthy or not. No. 2, the other thing he has to do is the swing changes that he was putting into to play, are those settled in? And finally, his equipment company doesn’t make equipment anymore, so those are the three questions he has got to answer. How do you do that? You can’t do that by just hitting balls in your backyard. You’ve got to go out and play some tournament golf and get up to game speed. That’s how you can answer those three questions. That’s what my assumption is that he has in mind by adding these three events and hopefully he will be able to play all three of them.”
Rymer – “For most human beings, this would be looking at a type of rehab-type of assignment where you would trying to ease in to it. But Tiger Woods doesn’t have the personality where he eases into anything. I think if he’s healthy he figures out a way to play pretty deep into these tournaments.”
Rymer – “I think he wants his young kids to watch him make another nice run and get out and play some great golf.”
Rymer – “Great athletes do what they need to do in order to win. Tiger is going to do that.”

-NBC Sports Group-