27 years later, Joe LaCava is again a Masters-winning caddie

Tiger Woods, Joe LaCava
For Tiger Woods, Sunday marked 11 years between major championship wins. For caddie Joe LaCava, it marked 27 years. Credit: Michael Madrid-USA TODAY Sports

As the golf world was understandably beside itself as Tiger Woods won the Masters Sunday afternoon — 11 years after his last major win at the 2008 U.S. Open — it was also quite special for Tiger’s caddie, Joe LaCava.

For LaCava, who stuck by Tiger’s side even when it seemed possible he may never play golf again competitively, it marked 27 years between major wins.

Nearly three decades ago, LaCava was on the bag for Fred Couples when the world’s coolest golfer won the 1992 Masters. Now he has one with Woods.

RELATED: What caddies are saying about Tiger Woods winning his fifth Masters

Coincidentally, with LaCava on the bag for both, Couples and Woods had the same winning total — 13-under, 275.

Not long after Woods tapped in for major win No. 15 and his fifth Masters title, our friends at Golf Digest tracked LaCava down in the parking lot. Here’s some of what he had to say…

On if Tiger can catch Jack Nicklaus and his record 18 major wins:

“It’s nice to get to 15, 18 isn’t a thought,” said LaCava. “Now 15’s here, let’s get to 16. Is it [the record] in play? Sure. The guy’s 43 years old, a guy like him could win when they’re 50. Sixteen is the next mission…

“It’s been a long time, lot of question marks, lot of injuries. I think 15 is, who knows, looking back 10 years from now, 15 may be the hardest one.”

On jokingly denying Tiger a read on his 18-inch birdie putt on No. 16: 

“He said ‘Take a look.’ I said, ‘Take a look? It’s a foot and a half,'” said LaCava, laughing. “He said, ‘Left center,’ I said ‘Go for it.'”

On the similarities between this win with Tiger and the win with Couples in 1992:

“It’s the same score,” said LaCava. “Raymond [Floyd] was at 11 in the house, so it was a little easier. Fred made a par, so he had a two-stroke lead, just like Tiger did. You still have to finish it off. It was a little tougher with Fred, knowing that pin was in the back. Plus he was in a bunker. I knew Fred’s ball was a little to the right, it’s not that easy of a shot.”

On the advice he gave Tiger on the first tee: 

“On the first tee I told him, ‘Intense but loose,'” said LaCava. “Don’t carry the weight of the world…

“I think he did that. I thought he was pretty loose. But I didn’t want him to lose the intensity. At the same time, this isn’t the end all. Not ‘Let’s just have fun no matter what happens’—don’t get me wrong. But be loose.”

Here’s a look at what folks in the golf world — and golf fans — were saying about LaCava on social media following the Masters victory for Woods:

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