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Tiger Woods hesitated during his PGA Championship press conference Tuesday before he appeared to criticize the PGA of America’s decision to allow John Daly to use a cart during this week’s tournament because of a chronic knee injury.
“I walked with a broken leg, so…” Tiger said.
PGA of America @PGA
“I walked with a broken leg.”
Friendly reminder @TigerWoods is as tough as they come. #PGAChamp https://t.co/01wyfhQWEa
Daly, who won the 1991 PGA Championship, told Doug Ferguson of the Associated Press a cart is the only way for him to compete.
“The whole thing (stinks),” he said. “Florida sends me a handicap sticker when I’m there. It’s embarrassing. But I can’t walk more than six holes before the whole knee swells up, and then I can’t go anymore.”
The 53-year-old California native noted he’s worried about the type of reception he’ll get at the famed Bethpage Black Course in New York after the PGA of America approved his cart request via the Americans with Disabilities Act.
“I hope I don’t get a lot of grief from the fans,” Daly told Ferguson. “My knee is screwed. I had the meniscus cut out. I have osteoarthritis so bad … I can walk up a hill, I just can’t walk down one.”
Meanwhile, Woods’ victory on a broken leg in the 2008 U.S. Open, his last major championship triumph before he won The Masters last month, is one of golf’s defining moments.
The 15-time major champion has never had an issue with Daly, who’s known for his ups and downs and a high-risk, high-reward playing style—”I have always been a John Daly fan and a friend,” Woods said in 2012—but he’s always been a stickler for the game’s rules and traditions.
In that regard, he’s got plenty of support from the sport’s traditionalists.
“I think walking is an integral part of being a pro golfer,” Nick Faldo, a six-time major champion and current CBS golf analyst, told reporters on a conference call when asked about Daly. “I’ll leave it at that.”
That said, the only way Daly’s cart becomes a major story during the tournament is if he manages to contend for the season’s second major title, and that’s highly unlikely.
Vegas Insider lists him with 1000-1 odds to win the PGA Championship, he hasn’t recorded a PGA Tour top-10 finish since the Puerto Rico Open in March 2015 and his last Tour win came at the Buick Invitational in February 2004.