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Tiger Gives Stevie His Unconditional Release

The news is delivered on

Tiger Woods announced Wednesday that he and caddie Steve Williams will not be working together in the future.

"I want to express my deepest gratitude to Stevie for all his help, but I think it's time for a change," Woods said. "Stevie is an outstanding caddie and a friend and has been instrumental in many of my accomplishments. I wish him great success in the future."

Presently, a replacement has not been named.

Woods continues to rest and rehabilitate his left leg. No decision has been made when he will return to competition on the PGA Tour.

The first question: last week Williams was asked about this and said he had not been fired. Did he know and was just trying to avoid a news story that distracted from his work and the Open?

Second question: Or is this how Stevie found out?

Third question: Who wants the job?

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Reader Comments (88)

I want the job! I'd like to work 7.5 weeks/year. And, I hate cellphone cameras. I would be perfect. First thing we do is get rid of that Kiwi headcover and put on a nice Wolverine...
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterChuck
He hadn't been fired because he quit. This is all kabuki theatre to allow Tiger to save face.

If Stevie Williams didn't pick up an temporary bag while Tiger was out in 2009, what changed for him to pick up a temporary bag in 2011?
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterTwoNuse
Stevie's website (can't believe a caddy has his own website) states that as of the conclusion of the AT&T National, Steve Williams was no longer employed by Woods. That seems odd for a number of reasons: News didn't come out unitl today, Tiger didn't play at the AT&T, Stevie already caddied for Scott at Congressional.

I suppose Stevie had a formal contract with Woods for caddying services instead of the usual handshake agreement between player/caddie.
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterCRS
In breaking news, shares in Ashland Inc., manufacters of Valvoline, plummeted in late day trading...
07.20.2011 | Unregistered Commenterdbh
Stevie not exactly going quietly, no?
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterTighthead
I don't think there are many, if any, who want this job.

The BIG question though is: Did Stevie have to sign a non-disclosure agreement?
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterPress Agent
Sounds to me like Tiger knows he's going to be out for a long time and this is a bit of a staged sacking to try and let Williams move on without having to reveal the real reason.
07.20.2011 | Unregistered Commenteract38
That Steve would use the word "scandal" in his press release is a clear indication that he is pissed.

I think the fact that Steve took some interim work with Adam for some reason flipped Tiger out and that was all she wrote...
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterDel the Funk
Yep, Stevie working with Adam was the nail in the coffin. Tiger is such a baby.
07.20.2011 | Unregistered Commenterraggededge
@ Press Agent...the line will be 100+ deep to get a shot at looping for Tiger when he comes back, guaranteed. (the queue for the bag is guaranteed that is, Tiger coming back is not)
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterDel the Funk
Ruh-ro. It sounds like Stevie got a package delivered. An acrylic fur Kiwi headcover wrapped in old newspaper.

Geoff, I tried to find the old quote from Stevie that when Tiger retired, he (Stevie) would also call it quits and that he'd never ever caddy for anybody else again. I'm not sure it's in Stevie's book, but I don't think so. If the quote can be found and duly attributed, I vote for it's placment on tomorrow's home page. Pretty please.

And one last thing -- Isn't this (12-13 years) just about exactly the same length of time that the Jack Nicklaus-Angelo Argea partnership lasted? It is just uncanny, the number of Nicklaus/Woods career coincidences. Except, of course, for all those innumberable ways in which Woods has been a reprobate.
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterChuck
One less reason to dislike Tiger.

Notah Begay will be Tiger's next caddie. I think Notah's on-course earning are $0 for the last two years.
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterChema
BenSeattle and raggededge, if Tiger was so annoyed Williams worked with Scott during the US Open, why did he wait until AT&T to sack him? Babies aren't known for the patience.
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterTwoNuse
Chuck - I remember that quote. It may have been when Woods was out for 8 months after Torrey Pines, and Stevie basically said he would work for Tiger or he wouldn't work. Taking the bag for Scott was clearly a departure from that, especially as Scott was not needing a looper for just one week.

Will Phil and Bones renew their vows?
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterTighthead
I think the leading candidates to replace Stevie are Kelly Tilghman and David Feherty. They both worship the ground Tiger walks on (or used to walk on)
Oh, this is gonna be fun. We now will have Michael Jordan on the PGA Tour
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterRyan
Tony Navarro or Ricci Roberts, possibly?
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterJames H.
The only guy nutty enough to become Woods' next caddie is this guy:

The way Woods' on-course earnings are going, 10% of bugger-all is still bugger-all - and this Swedish nutjob will be the last guy to figure that out.
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterMarky Mark
Tiger, Please hire Kelly Tilghman. That way you will know exactly how you stand in Fed Ex Cup points every minute of every day. She can breathlessly announce to you how the race stands after you have a bowel movement, after every sneeze, after you take a shower, etc.

And we will be spared her non stop excitement about the most obscure event in every meaningless golf tournament.

Might solve your need for companionship also.
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterCaddy Agent
Speaking of books by Stevie, I think it is time for another one!

I started to think that Stevie would never capitalize on his personal relationship with Tiger just for the sake of an eye-popping advance from a publisher. And then I regained my senses.

This whole thing has been played out in such a weird, amateurish way, that it really makes me wonder if Tiger and Stevie have an enforceable non-disclosure agreement.
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterChuck
Tiger will never win again.
07.20.2011 | Unregistered Commentereric
Finally, either Byron Bell or Jerry Chang with have a shot at working a full time job (assuming Tiger and his knee re-appear). The floozy agency/course design business has been very slow.
07.20.2011 | Unregistered Commentersgolfer
Adam Scott (with looper Steve Williams) will now probably win 6 majors, just to spite us.
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterChuck
I guess Williams isn't going to Excel Management - they really could use the fees that the Valvoline contract renewal would have brought in.
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterNoonan
Who will replace him? Billy Foster (Lee Westwood's caddy) is one possibility. Westwood threw a strop after missing the cut on Friday at the Open and may feel like a change. Colin Byrne (recent looper for Eduardo Molinarni & Goosen prior to that) is another.. As an Irishman I hope its Ronan Flood -Podge Harrington's caddy (& brother-in-law) who has done nothing for his master lately...
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterIrish Golf Nut
Don't see the Williams-Scott partnership lasting too long either, Stevie will miss being in the heat of the battle - something that doesn't happen too often when you are caddying for a guy who uses a belly putter.
07.20.2011 | Unregistered Commentertitleist38
Or a broomstick putter for that matter.
07.20.2011 | Unregistered Commentertitleist38
Unconditional release, Geoff?

I bet there are plenty of conditions. Like "no talking."
07.20.2011 | Unregistered Commentersteve elling
Titleist - Stevie will miss being in the heat of battle? Are you kidding me? First of all, he carries a freakin golf bag and give distances. He's not the golfer. I would guess the world's best caddie (compared to a really good one) might save an accomplished touring pro a stroke every four rounds. Maybe. Second, what player, exactly what player is in the heat of the battle all the time? A caddie - even one of Stevie's repute - doesn't get to pick and choose his boss.

And I've always been critical of Stevie in the past, but from the tone of his comments, it sounds like TW dumped him unexpectedly.
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterGinGHIN
This news feels totally irrelevant, because Tiger is never going to win anything again and will probably formally quit before the end of 2012.

@Marky Mark: That Swedish nutjob is a popular talk radio host who has little financial inititive taking up caddieing full time. He really IS a nutjob, so you're spot on there.

Different topic: Bubba was just interviewed on Swedish Television, and he has clearly learnt from the aftermath of his French folly. He was polite and did a spotless run-through of the places he'd visited. Well, he only mentioned one place, but he nailed that!
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterHawkeye
@ GinGHIN...have you ever looped in any competition of note?
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterDel the Funk
Wasn't Tiger Stevie's best man at the wedding? That's a long way to fall.
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterCharlieG
Del - several times in Regional US Open qualifying. Does that count? And at the time I was about a 2.5 index. My player was a +3.
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterGinGHIN
Del - a few sectionals, too.
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterGinGHIN
Elin was the bride and she got treated even worse.
07.20.2011 | Unregistered Commenteract38
Selfish Tiger again, making news during the week of the 15th major, The Canadian Open.
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterM
This is the best collection of comments to a Geoff post in a long time. Thanks,Tiger! Thanks, Stevie!
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterMark B
I'm just shocked that he worked for Peter Thomson without being able to spell his name.
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterRinger
Can Sean be far behind in this house cleaning?

Butch and I are waiting ............................
07.20.2011 | Unregistered CommenterHank
Stevie is selling shirts on clearance at his site. 2 for $20, postage included. Proceeds go to his foundation, which is cool.

Have there been many falls in sport comparable to Tiger's?

I won't miss Woods or Williams.
07.20.2011 | Unregistered Commenterd.b.cooper

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