Tiger Woods story

Here is my story that will run in tomorrow’s paper (although in an abbreviated form) on an update on Tiger Woods’ recovery from knee surgery.

By Jill Painter
Staff Writer
Tiger Woods is off crutches following knee surgery, but theres still uncertainty over his status for the U.S. Open.
Surgery on Woods left knee to repair cartilage damage was a surprise to many but not Woods. In a monthly newsletter on his Web site, Woods acknowledged surgery was inevitable before the Masters.
“I knew a couple of months ago I was going to have the surgery, Woods said. “The knee has been bugging me for a while. The only decision was, do you miss the Masters or play in the Masters? I decided to play. Even if I had won, I still would have had the surgery.
Woods hosted Tiger Jam XI in Las Vegas on crutches, but now hes wearing a brace. He said hes hoping to start rehabilitation soon.
The big question is whether hell be ready for the U.S. Open, which is June 12-15 at Torrey Pines, site of his six Buick Invitational victories.
“I really don’t have a timetable for returning to competition, Woods said. “The doctors have said I should be able to play again in four-to-six weeks, but nothing is certain. I’m just going to do what they tell me to do.
He has been playing through pain this season, though he didnt exhibit any signs in an incredible start of the season in which he finished in the top five in five events, including three victories. He said the knee pain wasnt an excuse for his second-place finish at the Maters. Trevor Immelman won by three strokes.
“I’ve definitely been playing in pain, but that’s not why I didn’t win at Augusta. I just never got comfortable with my putting stroke. As I said after the tournament, I was dragging the putter coming through which meant I couldn’t start the ball on line. That’s all it takes on those greens. Obviously, it was frustrating because I hit the ball well enough to win. It was just one of those things.
Woods said he left a congratulatory message for Immelman on his voicemail.
As for Tiger Jam, Woods said the event raised $1.5 million for the Tiger Woods Foundation, including a $100,000 donation from David Lee Roth, lead singer for Van Halen, which performed at the event. Eddie, Alex and Wolfgang Van Halen combined for a $100,000 donation.
Jill.painter@dailynews.com

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About Jill Painter

Jill Painter is a sports columnist for the Los Angeles News Group, covering everything from the Dodgers, Lakers, Clippers, USC, UCLA, Kings, golf and all human interest stories in sports.