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Tuesday Notes: Weir Out for Season with Injury, Hoping to Miss the Cut; Woods Divorce Final; CN Canadian Women's Open Ignored

Mike Weir is out for the remainder of the PGA Tour season with an elbow injury. (photo courtesy of David Donnelly)

Given how well he’s played in the FedEx Cups to date, it is hard to imagine Mike Weir not even getting into the four-week event. But that’s exactly what has happened. And after talking about all the elbow problems he’s been having, Weir announced today that he’s torn a ligament in his elbow — suggesting he’ll be out for the year, though hoping to avoid surgery. I’m not sure where this info is coming from, but here’s what hit the wires  Apparently the story originates from the Canadian Press’ Chris Johnston who spoke with Weir today, which is where the news comes from:

Mike Weir has likely hit his last competitive shot of a disappointing 2010 season after discovering he has a partially torn ligament in his right elbow.

The injury was detected by an MRI over the weekend.

The left-hander from Bright’s Grove, Ont., had been experiencing pain since before the British Open in July but thought it was tendinitis.

Weir’s plan is to rest the elbow in hope of avoiding surgery.

While the 40-year-old says he hopes to return to the PGA Tour as soon as possible, he acknowledged that it likely won’t happen until 2011.

What does this mean for Weir’s career?

Lorne Rubenstein wrote this on Sunday for the Globe, arguing that it is too early to count Weir out. That is, of course, before the latest news came out:

It’s three years later and Weir hasn’t won again. He’s had a lousy year, no doubt about it. He’s hurt. He’s 40, and golfers half his age are playing no-fear golf and bombing the ball past him. And so some Canadians are suggesting he’s finished. One Weir-watcher wrote to say, ‘He can apply for early entrance to the Champions Tour, but I don’t think that option is open.”

Another Weir-watcher wondered whether Weir will remain eligible to hold his full playing card for 2011 should he not work his way into the top 125 money-winners by the end of this season. The answer to that is simple: Weir is fully exempt on the PGA Tour through 2013 off his 2003 Masters win.

But never mind all that. There are no sure things in golf but there is one sure thing about Weir. He will work his butt off to find his game again. That’s not saying he’ll find it, but he’ll work, work and work.

The lesson from Weir’s history? Don’t give up on him. It’s too early for that.

Rubenstein is probably right. And the injury to the elbow would explain the horrible play for the past few months — seven missed cuts in his last 10 events and only one top-10 finish all year. Weir plays hard — and tried to play through what he thought was tendinitis. Turns out it was something more. Can he make it back? Maybe, but 40-somethings who have been injured have a lot tougher time making it back to their previous form. I wouldn’t bet against a return to form, but it is getting tougher and tougher to see Weir as the player who was a star from 2000 to 2004.

Of course this also means Weir will miss the Top 125 on the money list, though he has multiple exemptions he can use — including an injury exemption — for next year.

As for an official statement, IMG’s spokesman in Canada, Dave Haggith, had this to say:

No release because the info is still very much incomplete…tear of some degree, but what the treatment is, etc. is unknown at this point … how much time will he miss, what’s the treatment, etc. All still unknown.

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Tiger’s divorce is now final. Shocking. I’ve always said one’s spouse might forgive one indiscretion one time. But multiple incidents over years with multiple women? It wasn’t hard to see how this was going to end up. I don’t care about the financial situation of the divorce, but one has to wonder if, with this behind him, Woods’ game improves. Frankly I’m tired of the media writing that Woods has had an awful year. Off the course his season has been pretty grim, for sure. But given that, is finishing in the Top 5 in two majors a washout? I bet there’s lot of tour pros out there who would give their left nut to finish in the Top 5 in the U.S. Open and the Masters. The only reason his season seems like such a bust is because our expectations are so high. Is anyone really surprised that his play was up-and-down given that he was going through a divorce? Ever had a work colleague go through a separation? It isn’t easy and they aren’t always on top of their game. And so it is with Tiger. I expect him to be back up to form next year.

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I was wondering why the CN Canadian Women’s Open is almost universally ignored. It has a great field, and is often played on interesting courses, so that can’t be it. But it has been played away from the media hub of Toronto for a long time — basically for the past decade. That means the event gets local media coverage, which likely suits CN’s perspective, but fails to capture the imagination of those outside of the area. The telecasts, at least the last two, were basically horrible. I think Ron MacLean is horrible at the best of times, but he’s completely lost covering golf. The CBC is covering this year’s event from Winnipeg — is MacLean part of the telecast again? Let’s hope not. Anyway, I think the primary issues facing the event are the location, the telecast and the LPGA itself. The stars — namely Michelle Wie — have not really materialized. Does anyone really care about Cristie Kerr? Didn’t think so. Why not bring this event to Toronto on a neat older course — Scarboro or Toronto GC? Now that might help increase some interest. Why not bring on announcers who actually understand the sport? We’ll see what happens this week — but I’m not particularly hopeful.

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Jeff Lancaster

Jeff Lancaster is the Publisher of CanadianGolfer.com.

6 CommentsLeave a comment

  • Seems to me the CN event has had 48-50 of the top 50 each year since CN took over. Not sure how much more “star” power you could ask for?

  • Unlike the Men’s Open, at least a Canadian broadcaster is the host network providing longer hours of coverage and a true Canadian perspective. The fundraising for Children’s Hospitals across the country by CN has been great. The crowds are also great for the event. Ever since CN has been the sponsor, I have felt the tournament has been superior to the men’s Open in almost every way including how the LPGA views this tourney compared to the short shift the PGA gives to the Men’s.

  • Ok so the event is now over. Michelle Wie went wire to wire for the win. And yet there is no coverage anywhere on Canadiangolfer.com. So the real question is why are you ignoring the Canadian Women’s Open?

  • Maybe my perception is incorrect but from these eyes, the attendance espaecially on Sunday looked much larger at St. Charles than St. George’s. That being said, it was hard to understand the Golf Channel’s decision not to show coverage until the midnight hours.

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