There was a point when Tiger Woods “wasn’t able to function” due to the pinched nerve in his back. On Tuesday, though, speaking at a press conference ahead of his return to competitive golf in the Quicken Loans National, he said he’s now pain free.
“It’s been probably a good two years since I’ve felt this good,” Woods said.
Woods has been out of commission after having back surgery on March 31 to alleviate pressure on that nerve in his lower back, and he hasn’t competed since the WGC-Cadillac Championship finished up March 9. But after healing fast – “I’m actually probably ahead of schedule,” he said – he’s set to return this week at Congressional.
If the tournament didn’t benefit his Tiger Woods Foundation, he said he would not be playing. Woods’ goal was the Open Championship, which starts July 17. But his strong core area prior to the operation helped speed his recovery post-operation. Tedious treatments, such as cold baths – “they’re no fun but you gotta do it,” he said – also aided his comeback. After this week, Woods doesn’t plan to compete again until the season’s third major at Royal Liverpool.
He learned of some recovery methods from friends in other sports who’ve undergone similar surgeries, and he continues to realize he’s not the same, young player he once was. So he’s had to adapt.
“Just like MJ, I’ve got a fadeaway now,” Woods said, referring his friend and basketball legend, Michael Jordan.
Doctors have told Woods that the risk is minimal in coming back now as opposed to a few weeks later. Woods says his shot distances have returned and he’s back to his normal practice routines. So we should see the typically competitive player when Woods tees it up Thursday. He knows he has a lot of making up to do.
“I’m just trying to get into the (FedExCup) playoffs,” he said.
Other Tiger Woods Links:
– Players Ready for Tiger Woods’ Return: ‘We Need Tiger’
– Tiger Woods’ Schedule Limited Ahead of Open Championship
– How Tiger Woods has Fared in Comebacks
– He’s Back: Tiger Woods to Play Quicken Loans National
– Photos: Tiger Woods and Lindsey Vonn
– Photos: Tiger Woods Fans
– Tiger Woods No Longer Forbes’ Highest-Paid Athlete
– Tom Watson Holding Out Hope Tiger Woods Can Play Ryder Cup
– Rory McIlroy on Tiger Woods: ‘I’m Sad, I Miss Him’
– With Not Much Else To Do, Tiger Woods Masters Video Games
– Tiger Woods Design Making Progress in Cabo San Lucas
– Tiger Woods’ ‘Tiger Jam’ Once Again a Success
– Players React Following Tiger Woods Injury Bombshell
– Tiger Woods Sinks 91-Foot Putt at Trump National Doral
– Tiger Woods Has No Love for Dufner’s Auburn Tigers
– Video: Ahmad Rashad Hassled By Guy On Driving Range… And It’s Tiger Woods
– Rory McIlroy Edges Tiger Woods in Match at Mission Hills
– Tiger Woods Hits Golf Ball from Asia into Europe
– Did Sergio Garcia Learn His Lesson from Tiger Woods Comments?
– Lindsey Vonn: Tiger Woods is ‘Dorky-Goofy’