Journeyman pro Dan Olsen, a former Tour player who made 35 starts between 1989 and 2011, brought some strong allegations last Friday against Tiger Woods on the radio station 730AM The Game, claiming that the 14-time major champion was serving a one-month drug suspension. Since then, Olsen has retracted his comments, but not before practically starting an international incident.
“I heard he’s on a month’s suspension . . . it’s kind of a strong witness. It’s a credible person who is telling me this. It’s not testosterone, but it’s something else. I think when it’s all said and done, he’s gonna surpass Lance Armstrong with infamy.”
Woods announced on February 11th via his website, TigerWoods.com, that he was taking an indefinite leave of absence from competitive golf to work out his swing issues and said he would return when he felt like his game was “tournament ready.”
Olsen also discussed the “cheater” ball or “a ball that nobody else could play” that Tiger uses — and declared that those allegations were potentially more damaging than the supposed drug suspension.
“So he’s really playing with — I’m not gonna say a cheater ball, because he has the help of the establishment, really — but he played a ball that nobody else could play. …
“So that combined with his enhancement issues, like having a Canadian blood spinning doctor in his phone, you know? I mean, I think people are starting to openly call it what it is, which is gonna be a problem for him.”
However, after the interview hit the interwebs and drew vast attention globally, Olsen backtracked on his remarks.
“I retract the entire interview,” Olsen said in a statement to WVFN on Monday. “My comments were ill-advised. I want to apologize to Nike, the PGA Tour, Phil Mickelson, Tiger Woods and Tim Finchem.”
Basically, it sounds like Olsen, who’s best finish on Tour was T12 at Tucson in 2004, thought he was just talking on a local radio station and no one would hear or care about his (strong) allegations against arguably the greatest golfer of all-time and it wasn’t a big deal. Whoops! C’mon now, given what and whom he was discussing, the comments he made were sure to attract attention. I mean, if you’re going to make such allegations, you better have hard evidence, like the failed drug test results, in your possession. Now, obviously, Olsen didn’t think the whole thing through at the time.
The Tour normally does not disclose suspensions of any kind, but they did refute Olsen’s claims.
“There is no truth whatsoever to these claims,” Ty Votaw, the executive vice president of the PGA Tour, said Monday, via ESPN.com. “We categorically deny these allegations.”
Woods’ agent Mark Steinberg also denied the charges.
“These claims are absolutely, unequivocally and completely false,” said Steinberg in a statement. “They are unsourced, unverified and completely ridiculous. The PGA Tour has confirmed that there is no truth to these claims.”
Nike, which produces the ball that Tiger plays, also issued a statement.
“Every ball Tiger has put in competitive play from Nike has been thoroughly tested and approved by the USGA and R&A in accordance with their governing rules,” the company said.
Meanwhile, no date has been set for Woods’ return to competition. In his first two starts on the PGA Tour in 2015, he missed the cut at the Waste Management Phoenix Open, and then withdrew after 11 holes at the Farmers Insurance Open, where he’s won eight times.