Tiger Woods suffers serious leg injuries in crash on steep LA-area road

Tuesday was the 10th surgery for Woods, who has suffered knee, back and neck problems for more than a decade

Workers move a vehicle after a rollover accident involving golfer Tiger Woods Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021, in the Rancho Palos Verdes section of Los Angeles. Woods suffered leg injuries in the one-car accident and was undergoing surgery, authorities and his manager said. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
Workers move a vehicle after a rollover accident involving golfer Tiger Woods Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021, in the Rancho Palos Verdes section of Los Angeles. Woods suffered leg injuries in the one-car accident and was undergoing surgery, authorities and his manager said. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) (Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

LOS ANGELESTiger Woods was in the driver’s seat of a mangled SUV that rolled and ended up on its side down a steep roadway in the Los Angeles suburbs Tuesday morning, seatbelt still fastened, both legs seriously injured.

He was lucid enough to give his name —“Tiger” — to the sheriff’s deputy who had poked his head through a hole in the windshield.

“At that moment, it clicked in my mind and I immediately recognized him as Tiger Woods,” Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Deputy Carlos Gonzalez said Tuesday.

The single-car crash was another setback for Woods, the preeminent golfer of his generation who has spent the last decade in a cycle of injuries, self-inflicted personal problems and an arrest for DUI. Each time, he returned to the course and won.

At 6 p.m. EST, Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva gave an update on the crash

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Even at 45, Woods is among the more recognizable sports figures in the world and is sports’ biggest draw. His 2019 Masters victory was seen as a transcendent comeback and further cemented his reputation for toughness and clutch performances. Briefly Tuesday, the world paused and worried that Woods might be critically injured or worse. As it became clear that his life wasn’t in danger, the obvious question came out: Can he golf again?

“As if his body hasn’t endured enough,” Jon Rahm, the No. 2 player in the world, said from the Workday Championship in Florida. “I just hope he can get out of the hospital after recovery and he can still play with his kids and have a normal life.”