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Tiger Woods chats with his then swing coach Hank Haney during a practice round prior to the start of the 91st PGA Championship at the Hazeltine Golf Club on August 10, 2009 in Chaska, Minnesota.
By Christopher Powers
Hank Haney just won’t quit.
Last Thursday, the swing instructor was suspended from his SiriusXM PGA Tour Radio program for the disparaging remarks he made about women’s golf. A day earlier, when the topic of last week’s U.S. Women’s Open came up, Haney claimed that he couldn’t name more than a handful of players on the LPGA Tour, save for those with the last name “Lee.” He also mockingly predicted a Korean would win the tournament, which led many to deem his comments both racist and sexist. Haney attempted to clarify them soon after, claiming those characterizations were off base.
Even after an apology, in which Haney said he was sorry if he offended anyone, he was still suspended, and Sirius XM stated it would be reviewing his status going forward. Haney said he accepted the suspension and apologized again. At the time, that was that.
Then, South Korea’s Jeongeun Lee6, whose last name has a six on the end of it because she was the sixth player named Jeongeun Lee on the Korean LPGA Tour, won the U.S. Women’s Open on Sunday at the Country Club of Charleston. Rather than stay quiet, Haney believed he was vindicated, tweeting that his prediction was “based on statistics and facts. Korean women are absolutely dominating the LPGA Tour. If you asked me again my answer would be the same but worded more carefully.” Not surprisingly, Haney continuing to dig his own grave did not go over well.
But for reasons that are impossible to explain, Haney is still not done discussing the matter. On Tuesday, he directed his ire at Tiger Woods, who Haney coached from 2004-2010. Following an even-par 72 on Friday at the Memorial Tournament, Woods was asked about his former coach’s comments, and he held nothing back, saying Haney “deserved it,” referring to his suspension. “Just can’t look at life like that. And he obviously said what he meant, and he got what he deserved,” Woods added.
Apparently, these comments didn’t reach Haney’s desk until Tuesday afternoon. That, or he thought over how he would respond for a few days and came up with this statement below, which he posted to his Twitter and Instagram accounts:
“Amazing how Tiger Woods has become the moral authority on issues pertaining to women,” Haney wrote. “I spent six great years coaching Tiger, and not once did he ever hear me utter one sexist or racist word. Now, in addition to being a 15-time major champion, I guess he thinks he’s also a mind reader? #glasshouses”
Obviously, Haney is referring to Woods’ extramarital affairs, many of which occurred while he was coaching Woods. And not surprisingly, like his Sunday evening tweets following Lee6’s win, his latest comments are not being received well.
Haney, with the help of former Golf Digest senior writer Jaime Diaz, wrote about he and Woods’ time together in great detail (without Woods’ blessing) in a book titled “The Big Miss.” Haney is also a longtime Golf Digest contributing teacher.