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Tiger Woods Has Surgery, Will Miss Masters

by Photo of Ross Bernhardt

Tiger’s back was too troublesome to allow him to compete for another major in two weeks.

Tiger Woods Has Surgery, Will Miss Masters

While all of us golf fans wish this was an April Fools prank, Tiger Woods will indeed miss the 2014 Masters after having surgery on a pinched nerve in his back. He tweeted out the news just before noon along with a link to his website, and here is how the announcement read:

Tiger Woods announced Tuesday that he has undergone a successful microdiscectomy for a pinched nerve that has been hurting him for several months.

The surgery was performed Monday in Park City, Utah, by neurosurgeon Dr. Charles Rich.

The procedure was successful, but Woods will be unable to play in the Masters Tournament, instead requiring rest and rehabilitation for the next several weeks. "After attempting to get ready for the Masters, and failing to make the necessary progress, I decided, in consultation with my doctors, to have this procedure done," Woods said.

"I'd like to express my disappointment to the Augusta National membership, staff, volunteers and patrons that I will not be at the Masters," Tiger added. "It's a week that's very special to me. It also looks like I'll be forced to miss several upcoming tournaments to focus on my rehabilitation and getting healthy. "I'd also like to thank the fans for their support and concern. It's very kind and greatly appreciated. This is frustrating, but it's something my doctors advised me to do for my immediate and long-term health."

It's a sad but sort of inevitable day. Tiger's injury problems have plagued him since he gutted out that U.S. Open win on one knee in 2008. He's won tournaments, but he hasn't been able to return to that dominant form that we were all accustomed to. A friend, whose pulse is directly on the sport, reminded me that many suggested Tiger's injuries would continue to pile up because of the way he plays. His swing is too aggressive to stave off injuries forever, and they caught up to him with his back. 

Tiger missed two majors after that U.S. Open in 2008, but he hasn't missed a Masters since 1995. That's 19 straight appearances. This would have been 20, and a chance for his first green jacket (fifth overall) since 2005. 

Instead, Tiger will be recovering. But, as Tiger said, it's better to do this and get fully healthy for the long-term. It could have been 2008 all over again in terms of playing when he really shouldn't have been. 

Part of me still holds out hope that this is just one long, elaborate hoax and that Woods will walk out on the first tee at Augusta. 

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