After Tiger Woods put a bow on his first FedEx Cup Playoff event in five years — a tie for 40th at The Northern Trust — the 14-time major champion headed to the flash interview area to talk primarily about the state of his game, his issues with the putter and what he’s expecting in the coming weeks.
However, the most newsworthy portion of the post-round media scrum came in the form of a three-question back-and-forth with Woods about President Donald Trump.
Q. Your relationship with Donald Trump, how would you describe that professionally and personally?
TIGER WOODS: Well, I’ve known Donald for a number of years. We’ve played golf together. We’ve had dinner together. I’ve known him pre-presidency and obviously during his presidency.
Q. At times, especially in 2018, I think a lot of people, especially people of color, immigrants, feel threatened by him and his policies. He’s thrown himself into sports debates in terms of race with LeBron James, with the Anthem, what do you say to people who might find it interesting that you have a friendly relationship with him?
TIGER WOODS: Well, he’s the President of the United States. You have to respect the office. No matter who is in the office, you may like, dislike the personality or the politics, but we all must respect the office.
Q. Do you have anything more broadly to say about the state and the discourse of race relations?
TIGER WOODS: No. I just finished 72 holes and really hungry.
While opinions came fast and furious following Woods’ answers to the questions from a New York Times reporter, President Trump took to social media to laud Woods for his response.
The Fake News Media worked hard to get Tiger Woods to say something that he didn’t want to say. Tiger wouldn’t play the game – he is very smart. More importantly, he is playing great golf again!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 27, 2018
“The Fake News Media worked hard to get Tiger Woods to say something that he didn’t want to say,” Trump tweeted. “Tiger wouldn’t play the game – he is very smart. More importantly, he is playing great golf again!”