NBC: Tiger Woods turned down invitation to join U.S. Open broadcast, 'doesn't want to do it'
Tiger Woods' absence from next week's US Open will be stark.
Host Torrey Pines is one of Woods' favorite courses and the venue for one of his biggest championships, the 2008 US Open, which he won with an injured leg in a 19-hole playoff against Rocco Mediate. While Woods is far from returning to any type of golf after suffering serious injuries in a car accident in February, NBC tried to lure Woods onto his show.
According to the network, he refused.
"He didn't mean to do it"
Next week's show producers and announcers held a press conference Wednesday to discuss U.S. coverage. Announcer Dan Hicks provided an overview of Woods on Golf.com.
"We all thought how good that would be, who would be better if he couldn't be there to play it, voice it and put him on the show," said Hicks. “But we were turned away. He didn't want to do it and I totally understand his situation. "
Tiger Woods continues to focus on walking unaided rather than returning to golf. (Tracy Wilcox / PGA TOUR via Getty Images)
The latest on Woods' recovery
Woods and his team have sporadically reported his status since the rollover accident in which he sustained broken open leg fractures, among other serious injuries. He said in a May interview with Golf Digest that he continues to focus on unaided walking while refusing to address a return to competitive golf.
"My physical therapy got me busy," said Woods. "I do my routines every day and focus on my # 1 goal right now, to walk alone. Step by step."
Woods can also be seen on social media photos, the last time he dropped his hiking boot in a picture shared at the end of May.
On Wednesday, Hicks speculated that Woods did not want to become a "sideshow" attraction at the location of one of his greatest golfing successes.
"There's a lot going on in his world right now, and there is also a part of Tiger that doesn't want to be like that, for lack of a better word I don't want to sideline an event where we should concentrate on what's happening", said Hicks.
The US Open begins next Thursday, with Jon Rahm remaining a + 1000 betting favorite despite his withdrawal from the Memorial Tournament last week with COVID-19.
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