Which Tiger Woods Will We See at the Memorial Tournament?


Whether you love him or hate him, Tiger Woods is still one of the biggest attractions on the PGA TOUR and he’s back in action this week at the Memorial Tournament at Muirfield Village. He’s entering the tournament ranked 172nd in the world and only has 57 measly FedEx Cup points this season, putting him at 198th in the standings.

More from Pro Golf Now

Woods only has played in five tournaments this year, starting off things off with a tie for 17th at his own tournament, the Hero World Challenge. He followed that up with one of the most pathetic showings of his career at the Waste Management Phoenix Open, where he missed the cut due to what many called the “chipping yips.” A sudden withdraw from the Farmers Insurance Open caused him to take an extended break from the game and work things out with his new swing coach Chris Como. With many questioning whether he would ever make the cut at the Masters, he surprised everyone with a solid short game that helped him place tied for 17th. And his most recent outing at THE PLAYERS Championship, we saw him struggle to make the cut and finish the weekend tied for 69th. So one of the biggest questions entering the Memorial is, which Tiger Woods will show up?

To be honest, I’m not sure anyone knows the answer to that question. We’ve seen the good, the bad, and the ugly from Eldrick this season and it’s mostly been ugly. Tiger’s driving accuracy is only 50.71% for the year and and with Muirfield Village measuring in at over 7,300 yards, you know he won’t be holding back off the tee, which could be a dangerous thing. Water comes into play on 11 out of the 18 holes and the rough is a lot nastier than anything he’s seen this year. Muirfield challenges you to put yourself a good position off the tee in order to give yourself a good look at the hole. Driving isn’t necessarily Tiger’s strong suit, so if he’s not putting himself in a position to where he can attack the hole and set himself up for birdies, then things could get ugly. Woods is losing 2.3 strokes to the field this year tee-to-green and that’s something he can’t let happen this weekend if he wants to contend.

However, Tiger is a five-time winner at the Memorial and has a fantastic track record at Muirfield Village. In 14 starts at this course, he has five wins with the most recent coming in 2012, has never missed a cut, and has three top five finishes.

"“It’s interesting – I think I’ve always played Nicklaus courses well,” Woods said in 2013 “Look at my career, I generally have really played his courses well. I’ve won on quite a few, whether it was junior golf, college and now professional golf. For some reason, I just feel comfortable on his golf courses, the way he sets it up. There is ample room off the tees. The greens are really severe. If you miss the greens, it tests your short game. Those are the things that I think I do well.”"

He knows how to attack the course, the correct areas to miss, and he knows you have to hit the ball high in order to succeed on one of Jack’s courses. Tiger knows the keys to winning at Muirfield Village and can use his experience to put together a solid strategy on how to win.

Woods talked about the state of his game a press conference on Wednesday saying, “I feel very good about the changes we’ve made. We’ve implemented a couple new things. It’s still evolving, but it’s getting better which is nice to see.” Tiger’s chipping has definitely improved over the course of the season since his horrendous showing at the Waste Management Phoenix Open. He’s overcome the yips has had a decent amount of time since THE PLAYERS to put in work on the range with Chris Como.

“I feel very good about the changes we’ve made. We’ve implemented a couple new things. It’s still evolving, but it’s getting better which is nice to see.”

The Memorial Tournament will be the first of five summer events for Eldrick, which is the busiest his schedule has looked in quite some time. This weekend is his final stop before he heads to the U.S. Open in two weeks. It may be a total crapshoot as to which Tiger Woods shows up this weekend, but one thing’s for sure, he needs to build some kind of momentum entering Chambers Bay.

Next: The 2015 Memorial Tournament Power Rankings