And Woods didn't disappoint, taking a 1-stroke lead into the final round. But journeyman Rocco Mediate wouldn't go away in the final round. In fact, Mediate had a one-stroke lead over Woods as Wood reached the 72nd hole.
The photo above shows what happened: Woods rolled in a birdie putt to tie Mediate and force an 18-hole playoff.
And again, Mediate wouldn't go away. He and Woods see-sawed the lead several times during the playoff, with Tiger twice taking 3-stroke leads but Mediate coming back each time.
Again, they were tied at the end of regulation, and so continued to a 19th hole. And that's where Woods finally won, with a par on the first sudden-death hole.
A few days later it was revealed that Woods had been playing with a torn ACL ligament and stress fractures in his right leg. He underwent season-ending surgery shortly thereafter.
Top 5 at the 2008 U.S. Open
Tiger Woods, 72-68-70-73--283
Rocco Mediate, 69-71-72-71--283
Lee Westwood, 70-71-70-73--284
Robert Karlsson, 70-70-75-71--286
D.J. Trahan, 72-69-73-72--286