Tiger Woods' Hiring of LaCava Could Hurt Presidents Cup Chances

John BurkeContributor ISeptember 27, 2011

NEWPORT, WALES - SEPTEMBER 30:  Tiger Woods of the USA chats with Dustin Johnson (R) during a practice round prior to the 2010 Ryder Cup at the Celtic Manor Resort on September 30, 2010 in Newport, Wales.  (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)
Sam Greenwood/Getty Images


It is a word and concept that seems to have escaped the comprehension of American golfers. It seems the majority of the time the United States assembles a team to compete against the best of the Europe or the rest of the world, the U.S. players are still playing for themselves. 

And the stunt Tiger pulled this past weekend is going to do nothing to help that. 

Around the time Bill Haas was accepting his FedEx Cup trophy, it was announced that Tiger Woods had hired veteran caddy Joe LaCava to become his permanent bag man. 

The selection of LaCava came as no surprise, as they have known each other for a long time and LaCava's name was originally tossed around as replacement for Stevie Williams. 

The manner in which Tiger hired LaCava, as well as the timing, are both things that need to be questioned. 

As of now, it is still unclear as to whether or not Tiger talked to Dustin Johnson, LaCava's player before Tiger hired him, before making the hire. Such a move is the practice on tour and is expected. 

“Needless to say, Dustin and I were completely surprised, as they have enjoyed a great relationship and have been very successful together,” David Winkle, Johnson's agent, said shortly after the announcement was made public.

If the player and his agent are shocked by their caddy being hired away by another player, it may be safe to say Tiger did not have the talk Johnson deserved.

Tiger Woods with Fred Couples and Joe LaCava
Tiger Woods with Fred Couples and Joe LaCavaHarry How/Getty Images

But for a moment, let's give Tiger the benefit of the doubt and assume he talked to Johnson before hiring LaCava. If he did, the timing of the hiring is something to question.

In just over a month, the United States Presidents Cup team will head to Australia to compete. It is expected that both Johnson and Woods will be members of the team.

It can't be good for team chemistry to have one player who feels slighted by another. 

Come November when the team is in Australia, it is reasonable to think Johnson will still have some resentment towards Tiger for the hiring of LaCava. 

As for the fans, it could make the Presidents Cup more interesting to watch. Heck, maybe the caddies of Woods past and present will all have a meeting. 

But his decision to hire LaCava at this time, is not going to make the team any closer in Australia. In fact, it will most likely hurt, making it just the more difficult to win.