Miami, Florida (Sports Network) - Tiger Woods bogeyed two of the last three holes, but his closing 1-under 71 on Sunday was enough to give him his seventh victory at the WGC - Cadillac Championship.
Woods finished at 19-under-par 269. This was his 17th win in a World Golf Championship event, and the fourth PGA Tour event he has won at least seven times.
Steve Stricker, who gave Woods a putting lesson earlier in the week, closed with a 4-under 68 to grab second place at 17-under-par 271.
"You know at times, you kind of kick yourself. But no really, he's a good friend and we talk about putting. It's good to see him playing well, even though he clipped me by a couple shots this week," Stricker stated. "It's the nature of the game. Everybody helps one another out here. The old players did it with me."
Thanks to that lesson, Woods needed just 100 putts over the 72 holes. That is the fewest he's had in his career in a 4-round event.
"I played well this week. Thank you to Steve for the putting lesson," Woods said at the trophy presentation. "It was one of those weeks where I felt pretty good about how I was playing, and I made some putts. I pretty much got it rolling."
Graeme McDowell, who played with Woods, carded a double-bogey on the final hole to post an even-par 72. He was joined in third place at minus-14 by Sergio Garcia (69), 2009 winner Phil Mickelson (71) and 2006 runner-up Adam Scott (64). Scott's 64 was the low round of the week.
Keegan Bradley managed a 71 on Sunday to end alone in seventh at 12-under 276.
World No. 1 Rory McIlroy fired a 7-under 65 to end in a tie for eighth at minus-10. He ended alongside 2012 champion Justin Rose (68), Peter Hanson (70) and last week's PGA Tour winner Michael Thompson (73).
"I was pretty down about my game coming into this week. A day like today felt like a long way away if I'm honest," McIlroy admitted. "A few days like I've played, it does my confidence a world of good."
Woods ran home an 18-foot birdie effort at the second to remain three clear of McDowell, who birdied one and two. Woods pushed his cushion to four with a 4- foot birdie effort at the fourth.
After five straight pars, Woods rolled in a 6-footer for birdie at the 10th to go five ahead of Stricker.
Woods again parred five in a row, this time from the 11th. At the 16th, he found sand off the tee and his missed the green with his approach. Woods chipped on, then 2-putted for a bogey as his lead slipped to three over Stricker.
At the last, Woods hit his drive right to avoid the water, then pitched his second down the fairway. Things got interesting when his third landed short of the green in the rough.
Woods' ball could have rolled back into the water, but stayed up. He got up and down for bogey from there for the 2-shot win.
"It feels good, especially to play that well this entire week on a difficult set up. The greens got really quick out there today. If you left the ball in the correct spot, you could be pretty aggressive and shoot a good number," Woods said. "If you didn't (leave the ball in the right spot), boy you had to putt so defensively. The wind was moving the balls on the greens."
Stricker birdied the first, but gave that stroke back when he bogeyed the par-4 third. He connected on back-to-back birdies at five and six. Around the turn, Stricker moved to 17-under with birdies at 10 and 13. However, he parred the final five holes to end there.
NOTES: Woods earned $1.5 million for the victory ... This was Woods' 76th PGA Tour title and 39th European Tour victory ... The other three events Woods has won at the least seven time are the WGC - Bridgestone Invitational, the Arnold Palmer Invitational and the Farmers Insurance Open ... Woods has converted four in a row and 20 of the last 21 third-round leads into victories ... Woods ended the week with 27 birdies, one shy of his personal best for a 4-round event ... Americans have won all 11 events on the PGA Tour this year ... The PGA shifts to Tampa Bay next week for the Tampa Bay Championship, where Luke Donald won last year, while the European Tour is in India for the Avantha Masters, where Jbe' Kruger won in 2012.
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