According to Tiger Woods, Hank Haney is not on the firing block. This silly notion is pure speculation by the media. Maybe so, but the seed has been planted. And so, going forward, if his game does not round into shape, Tiger knows that the drum roll could begin for Haney’s departure.
While were in the speculating mode, how about this one: Haney leaves Tiger. I know, no one ever leaves Tiger – it’s always the other way around. Still, anything’s possible.
Haney has been Tiger’s man for five years, which is a long time on the “hot seat,” as Butch Harmon calls it. After their rebuilding year in 2004, Tiger has played some of the best and most consistent golf in the majors. Six wins, four seconds, a third and a fourth in his last 15 majors along with 20 additional tour titles surpasses his glory years (1999-20020 for sustained brilliance.
Let’s look at the arguments for staying and leaving from Haney’s perspective.
The Case for Haney Staying
He genuinely likes working with Tiger.
He is paid a not so small fortune for his services. (Just a guess.)
He craves the attention. The Barkley Experiment is proof enough of that.
He wants to be a part of history if/when Tiger wins #19.
It will help him build his burgeoning empire.
His ego demands that he straighten out Tiger’s driver, which would make him the undisputed king of the swing gurus.
The Case for Haney Quitting
He is getting tired of working for the ill tempered Woods.
Tiger may not be paying him all that much compared to what he makes elsewhere.
He can go out on top, the architect of Tiger’s best sustained stretch of golf.
He can devote full time to building his business, which includes a junior academy.
He is tired of traveling to tournaments.
I don’t expect this pairing to end anytime soon, but the rumor mill has started. And if Woods fails to meet his exacting standards over the course of this season, tongue lashings such as the one Haney endured at Augusta could stretch this relationship to the breaking point.