Sunday night, Tiger Woods posted this on his Twitter account: “Joe LaCava is an outstanding caddie and I have known him since I was an amateur, really looking forward to having him on the bag.” Since firing Steve Williams a few months ago, Tiger has been looking for a full time replacement. We all knew he wouldn’t hire a rookie caddie, but rather he would be searching out an experienced looper.
The move to hire Joe LaCava is a bit of a surprize, since LaCava recently started working for Dustin Johnson and the pairing seemed to be working, with DJ winning soon after the two came together. Apparently the allure of working for one of the best players of all time was too strong for LaCava, who is best known for being Fred Couples’ caddie for 20 years. Because Tiger plays a more limited schedule than most players, LaCava will be able to spend more time with his family. Dustin Johnson was contemplating a European Tour membership next year which would have added four more tournaments to his already busy schedule, so the move to Woods is a good one in terms of having more time off. However, Woods hasn’t won a tournament in two years and Johnson has been a cash machine in the past few seasons, so the move is a bit of a gamble financial for Joe LaCava.
Dustin Johnson will now start searching for a new caddie, as LaCava will start working for Tiger immediately. Butch Harmon – Tiger’s former swing coach, recommended LaCava to Johnson, so the news that LaCava has jumped ship to Tiger was a bit of a shock to him. “The thing that bothered me the most was T.W. not calling Dustin and asking if he could talk to Joe,” said Harmon. “That’s the way it’s done. I’m a little disappointed with the way Tiger handled it. But I’m not surprised.” It appears now that people not only question every move Tiger makes, but also the way he makes them. Of course everyone that follows golf remembers that Woods fired Steve Williams after nearly 13 years this summer after Williams worked for Adam Scott – another Harmon student – while Woods was recovering from a knee injury.
This years President’s Cup could shape up to be very interesting with all this caddie drama. The event will feature all of Tiger’s caddies and their former and current employers — Joe LaCava with Tiger, Mike Cowan with Jim Furyk, Williams with Scott and Dustin Johnson and his new caddie. I think people will want to see a Johnson/Woods pairing vs. Scott and anyone else, just to see the potential caddie drama unfold…
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