LOS ANGELES (AP) – Tiger Woods got caught in the rain without an umbrella, shot a 74 and made the cut on the number at Riviera. He withdrew the next day with the flu and hasn't been back. That was 10 years ago.
That's not to suggest Riviera has seen the last of Woods.
This will be the last year Northern Trust is the title sponsor at Riviera. Northern Trust will take over the first FedExCup playoff event in the New York area (formerly The Barclays), and Hyundai is leaving Kapalua to become title sponsor at Riviera.
How does this involve Woods?
There have been discussions in recent months for the Tiger Woods Foundation to have a significant charitable component of the Riviera event. It would be the perfect fit for Woods, mainly because the first Tiger Woods Learning Center is located down the road in Anaheim, and the foundation headquarters also is in Southern California.
The foundation is the designated charity for the Quicken Loans National, and the Hero World Challenge in The Bahamas. The World Challenge was held at Sherwood Country Club in Thousand Oaks from 2001 until 2013, giving the foundation a local presence.
Woods' foundation also is primary charity of the Deutsche Bank Championship, though Deutsche Bank is not expected to renew its sponsorship after this year.
The announcement about Hyundai becoming title sponsor at Riviera starting in 2017 did not include what the tournament will be called, and any discussions about getting Woods' foundation involved are not expected to progress until after this year's Northern Trust Open.
Woods has played in all of his foundation events when healthy, and that's another part of the equation. He has not played since August, has gone through two more back surgeries and has no idea when he will be fit enough to start practicing, much less playing.
Woods made it clear last December, though, that he wants to get healthy to play again.
Woods played his first PGA Tour event at Riviera as a 16-year-old amateur. He speaks highly of Riviera, without any great success on the course. His best result was a tie for second in 1999. He never finished out of the top 20 when completing the tournament.
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