Don't tell me golf isn't exciting without Tiger Woods.
This weekend at the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, we had plenty of drama that makes for a good final round in a golf tournament.
Two golfers in contention - including the leader - completely wrecked their chances at victory with excruciatingly painful 9s on the par-5 14th hole at Pebble Beach. Paul Goydos held a one-shot lead on eventual champion Dustin Johnson before his debacle that hurt me to watch. I can't even imagine what Goydos felt.
David Duval continues to periodically wow and amaze us. After his well-publicized fall as the world's best golfer a decade or so ago, Duval has turned up near the top of a few leaderboards here and there. For the fans who want to see him succeed, he did so again this weekend by finishing tied for second, one stroke behind Johnson. Duval's birdie putt on No. 17 was the highlight for me.
J.B. Holmes also made a charge at the end with an amazing second shot on No. 16, which he birdied. A near birdie miss on 18 was the only thing that kept the tournament from heading into overtime.
Then, we had the winner - Johnson, whose final round 74 was nothing to write home about. But it included an eagle on 6 and a double on 9. And when he needed a shot, he got it. His chip out of the bunker on 18 to within less than 4 feet from the hole won the tournament for him. He mucks up that chip or misses the short putt, and we're in a playoff.
Now, that's exciting.
Yes, TV ratings go up with Woods in the field. Yes, he makes things more competitive. And yes, I'll be glad when he returns.
But don't tell me golf isn't exciting without him.