The Big Miss

The Big Miss Summary

The Big Missis Hank Haney’s candid and surprisingly insightful account of his tumultuous six-year journey with Tiger Woods, during which the supremely gifted golfer collected six major championships and rewrote golf history. Hank was one of the very few people allowed behind the curtain. He was with Tiger 110 days a year, spoke to him over 200 days a year, and stayed at his home up to 30 days a year, observing him in nearly every circumstance: at tournaments, on the practice range, over meals, with his wife, Elin, and relaxing with friends.
The relationship between the two men began in March 2004 when Hank received a call from Tiger in which the golf champion asked him to be his coach. It was a call that would change both men’s lives.
Tiger—only 28 at the time—was by then already an icon, judged by the sporting press as not only one of the best golfers ever, but possibly the best athleteever. Already he was among the world’s highest paid celebrities. There was an air of mystery surrounding him, an aura of invincibility. Unique among athletes, Tiger seemed to be able to shrug off any level of pressure and find a way to win.
But Tiger was always looking to improve, and he wanted Hank’s help.
What Hank soon came to appreciate was that Tiger was one of the most complicated individuals he’d ever met, let alone coached. Although Hank had worked with hundreds of elite golfers and was not easily impressed, there were days watching Tiger on the range when Hank couldn’t believe what he was witnessing. On those days, it was impossible to imagine anotherhuman playing golf so perfectly.
And yet Tiger ishuman—and Hank’s expert eye was adept at spotting where Tiger’s perfection ended and an opportunity for improvement existed. Always haunting Tiger was his fear of “the big miss”—the wildly inaccurate golf shot that can ruin an otherwise solid round—and it was because that type of blunder was sometimes part of Tiger’s game that Hank carefully redesigned his swing mechanics.
Hank’smost formidablecoaching challenge, though, would be solving the riddle of Tiger’s personality. Wary of the emotional distractions that might diminish his game and put him further from his goals, Tiger had developed a variety of tactics to keep people from getting too close, and not even Hank—or Tiger’s family and friends, for that matter—was spared “the treatment.”
Toward the end of Tiger and Hank’s time together, the champion’s laser-like focus began to blur and he became less willing to put in punishing hours practicing—a disappointment to Hank, who saw in Tiger’s behavior signs that his pupil had developed a conflicted relationship with the game. Hints that Tiger hungered to reinvent himself were present in his bizarre infatuation with elite military training, and—in a development Hank didn’tsee coming—in the scandal that would make headlines in late 2009. It all added up to a big miss that Hank, try as he might, couldn’t save Tiger from.
There’s never been a book about Tiger Woods that is as intimate and revealing—or one so wise about what it takes to coach a superstar athlete.

Book Reviews


Boring and tired2 star

Just seems like Hank has a bone to pick. Done in poor taste.25

Golfman MikeK

Much Better Than I Expected5 star

If you appreciate the dedication involved to play competitive sports & you love golf this book is for you. This book was initially advertised as being a dis on Tiger from Haney but it is hardly that. If anything, Haney spends time defending his coaching over Harmon’s.55


Big miss1 star

Title says it all15

Il Voce

The Big Miss1 star

Talk about a Big Miss! If you want to read a story about why Hank Haney is the greatest golf instructor alive as told by Hank Haney, this is the book for you.15

Nick Weston

Tattletale2 star

Some really interesting stuff here...but this book is like your housekeeper writing a tell-all about your sex life. I do not understand how Haney rationalizes this book to himself. Despite enjoying some of the inside stories and wisdom, I think Haney is a reprehensible opportunist here, willing to sell out his former client for $$$$$$25


Not Your Place to speak, Hank.1 star

Hank Haney was not right to write a book about personal and private moments coaching Tiger Woods. I have no respect for him in writing this book and feel sorry for Tiger having his personal life looked at under a microscope in the book and in other forms of media. I wish there was a way for this book to be taken off the market because Hank Haney should be thanking Tiger for all of the years of coaching him, not selling his private moments with Tiger and looking to make more money. Hank Haney owes all of his fame to Tiger Woods for making his teaching popular. Hank Haney was nothing before Tiger came to him for coaching.15


Interesting4 star

Very interesting and fair read for anyone who has followed Tiger throughout his career and is miffed at his fall from grace. A must read for anyone who is a fan or student of the great game of golf.45


Outstanding5 star

If you are a golf fan, or a tiger fan (or like myself-both), this is the book you absolutely need to read. Hank haney did a great job writing a detailed account of his experiences with tiger. I thoroughly enjoyed the book and finished it in less than 24 hours. I thought he was fair to tiger as well-this was not a "bash tiger" book no matter what you've heard or read about it55

Jonathan Barron

Great book!5 star

Very much enjoyed hank's writing and telling of the story. Thanks, hank!55


The Big Miss4 star

Good book. It's cool how Hank tries to get in the mind of Tiger and lay it on paper. Hank also seems defensive when compared to Butch in some ways, but overall interesting how Tiger lived pre-scandal.45

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