Tiger Woods is taking the high road after enduring a highly unfortunate comment by Sergio Garcia.
But will the media give Woods a break now?
Garcia originally discussed what he viewed as a breach of golf course etiquette by Woods during the third round of The Players Championship two weeks ago. Garcia was subsequently asked in jest at a European Tour function if he would invite Woods to dinner during next month’s U.S. Open.
According to ESPN and other media sources, Garcia said: “We’ll have him ’round every night. We will serve fried chicken.”
On Wednesday morning, a clearly angry Woods tweeted: “The comment that was made wasn’t silly. It was wrong, hurtful and clearly inappropriate.”
Woods also noted: “I’m confident that there is real regret that the remark was made.
The Players ended nearly two weeks ago and it’s long past time to move on and talk about golf.”
Garcia said in his comments: “My answer was stupid and out of place. I can’t say sorry enough. I am sick about it.”
Woods handled the fracas with class, and Garcia has engaged in full-scale damage control.
But now this controversy has taken on a life of its own.
ESPN, for instance, discussed the implications of the story in great detail on Wednesday morning on its platforms.
It is clear that the media are just getting warmed up, even as Woods made it clear that he was prepared to move on.
The sports media love nothing more than to spice up an event like the upcoming U.S. Open with a war of words between two stars.
Woods, the biggest golf icon of his generation and no stranger to media circuses, has been through his fair share of off-the-golf-course entanglements in recent years.
Woods’ game suffered as he dealt with the provocations. He has worked hard to return to his previous greatness and has become, as usual, the sport’s No. 1 attraction during his comeback trail.
The U.S. Open is one of golf’s greatest tournaments and a staple of TV in mid-June.
The media sure have had a juicy sidebar to tackle now. And, God knows, they will, in every excruciating detail.
Woods says he has moved on from the verbal war and wants to concentrate on his golf game.
But the media probably won’t take the high road. Look for reporters to milk this melodrama for every ounce of publicity.