Monday, March 26, 2012

This Tiger Is Showing His Stripes

In a new tell-all book, Hank Haney, former golf coach to Tiger Woods, paints his student of six years as a tempestuous, rude, cheap, porn-watching superstar oblivious to those around him. Excerpts from the book ("The Big Miss") have been published in the New York Post.

Haney described Woods' relationship with his wife as 'distant' and 'cool'. Three months after the couple married, Nordegren apparently wanted to celebrate her husband’s victory at Torrey Pines. She suggested they throw a party like they used to when she worked as a nanny for fellow golfer Jesper Parnevik. But Tiger shot her down, saying: “E, that’s not what we do. I’m not Jesper. We’re supposed to win.’

Haney adds that the model’s smile ‘got smaller’ as their marriage continued. ‘In the future Elin would keep her emotions under wraps whenever Tiger won,’ he writes. ‘As life became more complicated, I thought Elin changed . . . She and Tiger developed a calm, almost cool relationship in front of other people, and conversations with them tended to be awkward and strained. ‘I never saw them argue, but they weren’t openly affectionate either.’

Haney depicts Woods as bad-mannered, cheap, and a lover of pornography and potty-humor. Haney writes that during their six years together, Woods showed little respect for those around him. Whenever they got takeout, Haney would have to pick up the food — and the tab. “He seemed to think it was funny to be cheap.”

Haney also recalls cringing when Tiger would completely ignore “little-kid autograph seekers who were begging him to stop.”

Before the 2006 Ryder Cup, several golfers, including devout Christian Zach Johnson, shared a hotel room with Woods. Tiger ‘immediately purchased the adult-move 24-hour package and turned it on,’ Haney said. Johnson had no choice but to ignore the adult programming. “It was so funny watching him acting like everything was normal,” Woods told Haney. “I got him pretty good.”

He was more mean-spirited when it came to rival golfer Phil Mickelson. Tiger would call him lazy and “make fun of his body.”

The ex-coach said Tiger let his fame go to his head. When he went out to eat with Nordegren, he’d get up and leave, expecting her to follow – even if she hadn’t finished her meal. ‘When he was done – and he habitually ate fast – you were done,’ he wrote.

Though Woods said he hated the ‘vultures’ in media for picking apart his personal life, he oddly loved his depiction in the animated comedy "South Park", in which he is seen calling Nordegren a ‘fat Swedish cow.’

Haney eventually split with Woods via text message in May 2010-- appropriately enough, since Tiger is well-known for ignoring people while glued to his smartphone. As it turned out, the golfer was texting his mistresses at the time.

Woods has written off the book, calling it ‘unprofessional and very disappointing.’

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