Golf's current number one player just caught a pass that it's former king, Tiger Woods, never could have expected.
On his approach to the eighth hole at the Cadillac Championship, McIlroy shanked his shot to the left and his ball ended up in the water. Angry, he threw his 8-iron in right behind it. It's not the worst thing that’s ever happened on the course at a PGA Tour event; Sergio Garcia once spit into a hole after he was mad at himself for missing a shot.
“I didn’t spit, I just let it go down. But anyway, it’s not a big deal.” -- Garcia on spitting into a cup that other golfers have to retrieve their balls from.
This is also the same guy who once had to apologize for saying he'd like to have Tiger Woods over for some fried chicken. Garcia was never the golfer that Tiger was. Whatever his character flaws, Tiger never would've spat where somebody else had to put their hands to retrieve a ball. He never would've flung a golf club like a projectile because he was pissed that he didn't make a shot. After all, he missed, not the golf club.
But given how Tiger's been heckled, criticized and clowned during his career (fried damn chicken?), we can imagine that would've been received about as well as Darren Wilson leading the opening invocation at the next NAACP convention.
Tiger Woods, like President Obama, has been mocked during introductions and speeches, yet always keeps his composure. Imagine if he had come out of his face in response to Phil Mickelson interrupting his accolade filled introduction:
(Press play below)
Even worse, imagine if Tiger was the one who interrupted Mickelson's introduction.
Award-winning golf writer Curtis Bunn broke it down like this:
"...[T]his isn’t McIlroy’s issue; it’s media’s, analysts’, players’ and fans’ who have collectively bashed Woods for every move that did not align with their thinking or golf’s intended behavior. Players have snapped clubs in half, thrown tantrums, you name it. And none of them got the grief Woods has received over the years. Wonder why?”
There’s not much to wonder about when Tiger, even in the waning years of his career can still expect to take shots for every misstep, while McIlroy flinging his club into a lake in a temper tantrum receives this response: