Tiger is back. Sort of.

There’s this guy who looks like an older version of the guy who was a lock to become the greatest golfer of all-time, until injuries and personal mayhem brought him back to earth.

Those who follow golf closely, and many who don’t, watched in fascination Thursday and Friday as Tiger Woods tentatively launched yet another comeback. This one is at Torrey Pines, the scene of so many Tiger triumphs, including the 2008 U.S. Open, when he won his 14th major on one healthy leg, defeating Rocco Mediate in a playoff.

Tiger was 32 then, and destined to romp past Jack Nicklaus’ 18 major wins.

What happened instead was a string of injuries, and a public humiliation involving a tawdry sex life that tested the will of spectators who admired Woods’ golf wizardry.

What we have now is a 42-year-old Tiger Woods who is a fallen legend trying to get back on the pedestal. And it, once again, is fascinating.

We all have our opinions about Tiger and his game.

I do not expect him to win another major, or even another important tournament. Maybe not any tournament. The new generation(s) of golfers are so talented, and so focused that, at this point, a big win by a 40-something like Tiger or Phil Mickelson would be a wonderful curiosity, like the close-but-no-cigar runs made by elder statesmen Tom Watson and Greg Norman at British Opens.

I believe Tiger’s mindset is as much an obstacle to winning again as the injuries and the aging. He has always played golf with a football-like urgency. I wonder if he can find the patience and inner peace he’ll need to be a champion again. The rest of this article is available to subscribers only – to become a subscriber click here.