Tiger Woods’ return to Riviera got off to a roller coaster start with a one-over-par 72 that included five birdies, five bogeys or worse, and one lost ball in the trees. And if you found yourself thinking, This is a pretty odd round, you were correct!
According to Golf Channel’s Justin Ray, Woods pulled off something he had never done in more than two decades on the US PGA Tour:
Weird round for Tiger Woods: this is the 1,184th round of his PGA Tour career. It's the first time he has hit 7 or fewer greens in regulation, yet made at least 5 birdies.
— Justin Ray (@JustinRayGolf) February 15, 2018
So … he’s got that going for him.
Also strange was Woods hitting more fairways (eight of 14) than greens in regulation. Prior to the event, oddsmakers had set his over/under for fairways at a scant 4.5.
However, while Woods’ mixed-bag of ball-striking drew most of the attention, his key stat on Thursday was that he only had 25 putts. And we’re guessing he usually makes at least five birdies when he expends that few strokes on the greens. In any event, don’t expect to see another round quite like this from Tiger anytime soon.