Arnold Palmer brought a country-club sport to the masses with a hard-charging style, charisma and a commoner's touch. At ease with both presidents and the golfing public, and on a first-name basis with both, "The King," died Sunday in Pittsburgh. He was 87.
Alastair Johnson, CEO of Arnold Palmer Enterprises, confirmed that Palmer died Sunday afternoon of complications from heart problems.
Palmer ranked among the most important figures in golf history, and it went well beyond his seven major championships and 62 PGA Tour wins. His good looks, devilish grin and go-for-broke manner made the elite sport appealing to one and all. And it helped that he arrived about the same time as television moved into most households, a perfect fit that sent golf to unprecedented popularity.
Beyond his golf, Palmer was a pioneer in sports marketing, paving the way for scores of other athletes to reap in millions from endorsements. Some four decades after his last PGA Tour win, he ranked among the highest-earners in golf.
On the golf course, Palmer was an icon not for how often he won, but the way he did it.
NASSAU, Bahamas - Rickie Fowler and Tiger Woods both had cause for celebrations large and small at the Hero World Challenge.
Fowler rallied from a seven-shot deficit by opening with seven straight birdies at Albany Golf Club and closing with an 11-under 61 Sunday for his second victory worldwide. It was the second time in his eight years on tour that he won multiple times around the world.
Woods had his best finish in four years.
Playing for the first time in 10 months while recovering from a fourth back surgery, Woods closed with a 68 despite a bogey-bogey finish. Even so, his back felt good and he was swinging at full strength. He tied for ninth in the 18-man field, his best result since a playoff loss at this holiday event in 2013.
NASSAU, Bahamas - One of the biggest cheers at the Hero World Challenge was seeing the name Tiger Woods go to the top of the leaderboard.
It just didn't stay there for long.
Woods built on a solid start in his return to golf by shooting 31 on the front nine at Albany Golf Club, only to stall on the back nine for a 4-under 68. By the end of the second round Friday, he was five shots behind Charley Hoffman, who shot 63.
Hoffman made 12 birdies on another breezy afternoon in the Bahamas to take a three-shot the lead into the weekend over Jordan Spieth (67) and Tommy Fleetwood (69).
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