PGA Tour: Jason Dufner Wins, Is Tiger Woods Still Relevant?

Jason Dufner won the 2013 PGA Golf Championship, and all I could think about was the drought is now 18. That is how many major tournaments Woods has played since he last won at the 2008 U.S. Open.

Now we will have to wait until next year's Masters to see if Woods can get closer to breaking Jack Nicklaus' record of 18 major tournament wins. For now he is stuck at 14.

Woods may be ranked #1 in the world, with over $7 million in earnings this season, but the casual observer only cares about him breaking that record. 

As a fan of some sports and a casual observer of most, I will watch just about any sport if you tell me a milestone is about to be broken. That is why I watched the PGA Championship. It is the only reason I watch golf at all.

Records and winning streaks are what attract many people to watch sports. Teams pay their athletes to break the records and no matter what you hear athletes don't want to see their record broken. Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa's race to break Roger Maris' single season home run record is credited with restoring fan interest in baseball. Every year members of the 1972 Super Bowl Champion Miami Dolphins celebrate when the last undefeated NFL team loses thus preserving their record of having the only perfect season in NFL history. The New York Yankee's Alex Rodriquez has $30 million of marketing bonuses associated with home run milestones. Eric Dickerson, the holder of the NFL single season rushing record said of Adrian Petersen, "I do not want him to break my record. I'm not going to tell that lie."

As a fan of some sports and a casual observer of most, I will watch just about any sport if you tell me a milestone is about to be broken.

Woods is 38 and has had problems with his left knee, Achilles tendon and elbow, but he is still on track to break the record. Twenty-seven (27) players have won major tournaments in their 40s. Nicklaus won his last major at 46 and didn't win his 15th until he was 38. He also went through a drought of 20 losses between majors victories in the 1980s.

Woods played poorly at this year's PGA Championship. He never broke par, even though the grounds at the East Course at Oak Hill Country Club were ripe for setting records, and was out of contention by the end of the second round. However, he is not dismayed by his performance at the majors. "I've been there in half of them," he said about his 5-year drought.