Tiger’s Back on the Prowl

By Michael C. Jones, BASN writer
Updated: March 26, 2012

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Is he back?

Is he back?

CALIFORNIA, (BASN)—Do a quick web search on Tiger Woods March 25, 2012 win at the Arnold Palmer Invitational, and you will probably read that he is officially back after winning in convincing fashion on Sunday.

But in his mind, he hasn’t even scratched the surface when it comes to resurrecting his career after going through the longest winless stretch in his professional career. When asked by NBC Sports staff what a victory at Bay Hill would mean for the former world No. 1, he said in typical abridged, Tiger-like fashion simply, “Number seventy-two.”

That’s because Woods measures his career success by majors. He’s not wired like the rest of us, or even his own peers who happen to be the best players in the world. The only victories that really have substance in the mind of Tiger only happen four times each year — they are major championships.

This rhetoric — that Woods is still hungry for more — shouldn’t downplay the implications and impact the victory on Sunday had on both himself and the sport, however.

After going winless on the PGA TOUR for over two and a half years, Woods without a doubt felt a very large burden lifted off his shoulders. Winning is a step-by-step process, and before he had a realistic shot to win a major, an official PGA TOUR victory was a necessary stepping stone.

Though much of the public perception is that Woods has gotten his game back, he is still looking for more; and with the way he is playing when healthy, it stands to reason that it is now a matter of when, and not if, he will win the next major. In recent years, this was a serious question hanging over his game.

No scenario could be more ideal going into The 2012 Masters. Woods can rest his body and his mind in the weeks leading up to the event, which begins April 5th.

Should he win, it will mark a comeback of historic proportions at the very place where his storied journey began in 1997.

The opportunity to come full circle and put a stamp on the resurgence of a legendary career at historic Augusta National has set the stage for an incredible event.

You’d better believe Woods will be ready after tasting victory once again.

Michael C. Jones regularly covers the PGA TOUR and has written for Yahoo! Sports and Examiner.com.

Follow Michael on Twitter: @MikeJonesTweets