Tiger Bogeys at Press Conference

Yesterday, in front of a small, hand-picked group of people, Tiger Woods made his first public (if you can call it that) appearance to address his well-documented infidelity.  Woods was just another in a long, long line of professional athletes who have made a feeble attempt to sound contrite.

Tiger made his first attempt at forgiveness from fans and media yesterday (google images)

Woods approached the podium and proceeded to read a letter that was undoubtedly written for him by a number of publicist, who are getting paid good money to help him retain what sponsors are still on board.

Instead of speaking from the heart and truly sharing himself to the public, Woods and those paid to stop the endorsement bleeding had him read a boring, uninspiring breakdown that they hoped would help restore his image.  Instead, he came off as robotic and completely staged.  He tried to make eye contact with the camera, but that could not last too long because he had to read the next line that was written for him.

His pretend press conference left many believing that he is very sorry….that he was caught, and he is even more sorry that the media has run with the story like it has.  The speech that Woods was supposed to deliver seemed to address all the points and feelings that the general public wanted to hear, but the part that Woods and his staff missed was that what the general public wanted even more was for Woods to actually mean it.

People make mistakes, and no one on this planet is perfect, but what happened to character and integrity?  We are a very forgiving culture, especially to athletes, but the reason the public has not welcomed Woods, Mark McGwire and Alex Rodriguez back with open arms is that they come across as being insincere.

Andre Agassi recently came out with a tell-all book called “Open” and brought several dark secrets out of his closet for all of the world to see.  Some people lost a lot of respect for him, mainly due to his admitted use of methamphetamine.  Regardless of your feeling about drug abuse, at least Agassi was man enough to admit he wasn’t perfect, and take responsibility for what he did–instead of hiding behind some public relations mercenaries.

Woods and his people should take a page out of Agassi’s book (no pun intended) and try honesty and integrity to restore his image.  Instead, they went the PR route, and his image wasn’t so much tarnished as it was exposed.  And his press conference only reinforced that yesterday.

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