Last week prior to the opening round of the Bridgestone Invitational, all the buzz on the PGA Tour was about Tiger Woods making his return to competitive golf. By the end of the week that changed. Adam Scott blistered Firestone and captured probably the biggest win of his career. It was his moment. He has never played better. And yet following the win his caddie, Steve Williams, decided to steal the spotlight from the guy who hit the shots and made the putts. Williams was interviewed by CBS after Adam Scott’s win and talked as if he won the tournament and he was the one that played so well. Williams is clearly still bitter and there seems to be a lot of bad blood between Tiger and Stevie and Williams took that opportunity to take shots at Tiger Woods. That was not the time and it was not the place.
While there is no doubt that a caddie is important to a golfer and without a doubt Stevie is one of the best caddies on tour, it wasn’t his moment. It was Adam Scott’s. Stevie carried the bag, he helped read the putts, kept Scott calm under pressure, but he had no business taking the spotlight from his guy and Williams arrogance was oozing off the television screen.
Paul Azinger joined WDAE in Tampa Bay with Steve Dueming to talk about the tweet that he sent about Steve Williams breaking the caddie code, what Williams words shows about his feelings about Tiger Woods, what he thinks happened between Tiger and Steve Williams, and what he thinks happens from here with Steve Williams.
On his tweet about Steve Williams breaking the caddie code:
“There is like a caddie code. It’s the caddie code, it’s not my code. I just brought it up on twitter I said Steve Williams broke the unwritten rule, I should’ve said code, caddie’s don’t talk to the press and when they do it’s usually at an appropriate time. I don’t have a problem with Stevie talking to the press and I have nothing against the guy but here’s the deal, the player-caddie relationship is a special relationship and it’s a unique bond. The player and the caddie have to get along, the caddie has to know it’s a job, it’s a business, and show up on time. There’s like two or three reasons to get a caddie fired. The player could be sick of looking at the guy and a change could be as good as a rest or the caddie has done something to irritate the player. That’s about it. The old joke is when the player plays good the caddie says we, but when the player plays bad the caddie says he. In this case the player played great and the caddie said I. It caught everybody by surprise and I tweeted about it. I think what really got him fired up is when I put this out there last night, I told my caddie you’re allowed to say three things and it was all tongue and cheek. The three things you always tell your caddie that you can say are you’re right, I’m wrong, and boy you’re screwed. It hit the fan and I think what happened was New Zealand and Australia woke up this morning and I had a lot of people ripping on me for taking Stevie to task a little bit.”
What it shows you about Tiger Woods with the comments from Steve Williams:
“What it shows you is that Tiger Woods is a real lightning rod. There’s a lot of emotion still wrapped up in whether you really like Tiger or can’t stand him. A lot of people have not liked Steve Williams through the years. He has not been a popular person amongst the players and the caddies necessarily and that’s okay, he’s got a work ethic and people don’t like winners a lot of times. This situation was unique. I believe Stevie should’ve been interviewed. I wanted Adam Scott to win so I could hear what Stevie said in regard. It was as much what he said that did the damage. It became a me, me, me or I, I, I fest and he didn’t say how great Adam Scott played. When he said it was the greatest week of my life I don’t know how anybody could believe that and it just shows you there is a lot of bitterness and animosity towards Tiger still and the way he was let go. Probably some of it is justified but he should’ve given Adam Scott his props and then lit Tiger up and I think everybody would’ve thought differently.”
On what happened between Tiger and Stevie:
“I have no idea. It’s going to be speculation and I don’t even want to say anything for fear that someone is going to take it national. I don’t have a vendetta against either one of them, I have always pulled for Tiger to do well, he’s the most exciting player whether you like him or hate him now, and for me personally it’s hard to watch the product unless he is in it. Now that Rory McIlroy and Adam Scott are playing well it’s becoming a little better product, but it’s a great product when Tiger is playing whether you hate him or love him. What happened between those two I don’t know but apparently it’s a bitter man now and it’s unfortunate, but at the same time you’re talking about golf today on your show opposed to anything else.”
On Tiger Woods not having friends:
“I know that he has to be angry at the media that tore him down. He’s gotta be angry at himself first, he’s dealing with the worst of all possible emotions and that is shame, and he’s not healthy Who are his friends? I mean Mark Steinberg? Come on. (Host: He doesn’t have anybody.) Well he brought it on himself.”
If he thinks Adam Scott will tell Steve Williams to back off or if Williams will stay quiet on his own:
“Steve Williams pipes down on his own.”