Rachel Uchitel, the New York socialite that the National Enquirer outed as having an affair with Tiger Woods, seems to have lawyered up. According to TMZ, Rachel Uchitel left messages with two high-profile celebrity attorneys, Gloria Allred and Mark Geragos. It seems that Rachel Uchitel may have plans to sue the National Enquirer for their stories alleging that Rachel Uchitel may have met Tiger Woods in Australia during the Australian Masters in early November in an affair that began in June. The National Enquireralso quoted a close friend of Rachel Uchitel’s, Ashley Samson, as stating that Uchitel was seeing the 33-year-old Tiger Woods on the sly. Rachel Uchitel has been quoted as saying that stories of an affair are “Bull—t!”
Eloquence aside, TMZ reported Saturday that Uchitel hired Gloria Allred to represent her and is considering a defamation lawsuit against the unreliable tabloid. The alleged affair between Tiger Woods and Rachel Uchitel certainly has the internet and celebrity talk shows burning with newsworthy tidbits and copious amounts of extrapolation and speculation, a situation that has exploded since Tiger Woods’ accident early Friday morning. With TMZ and other celebrity websites, tabloids, and television shows reporting non-stop with each miniscule development, the story does not look as if it will go away anytime soon. The fact that everyone is smelling scandal, that there may have been an affair between Tiger Woods and Rachel Uchitel — or even just the insinuation of one — that sparked the strange incident at the Woods’ Windermere home in Florida — only heightens the interest.
And it all seems to hinge on an alleged affair. Is there any proof that Tiger Woods and Rachel Uchitel are actually involved in a relationship? The National Enquirer presents a source, Ashley Samson, as stating that one exists, that Tiger Woods and Samson’s friend, Rachel Uchitel, are constantly sexting each other, and that her friend is in love with the famous golfer. Uchitel has denied it all, admitting that she knows Tiger Woods, met him in May at a night club. She admitted to having seen him a couple times afterward. She also admitted to being in Melbourne, Australia when Tiger Woods was there for the Australian Masters.
Does that mean Rachel Uchitel is having an affair with Tiger Woods?
Hardly. The National Enquirer also maintains that Uchitel lied to them, telling them that she was in Australia “for business” after admitting to them that her story about being there with her boyfriend was untrue. She also said she did not stay in the same hotel as Tiger Woods while there, but the National Enquirer reported that she did stay at the same hotel, the Crown Towers, while in Australia. The reporter said she went to the 35th floor, which houses the hotel’s VIP Suite.
Does any of that mean Rachel Uchitel is having an affair with Tiger Woods?
Absolutely not. Although it is true that the series of events might seem a bit suspicious, they are all merely circumstantial. Even if Rachel Uchitel lied (and who’s to say that the National Enquirer isn’t simply creating this drama with spurious insinuations and allegations?) about who she traveled with, why she was in Australia, and where she stayed while there — none of it is definitive proof she was in Australia for anything other than “for business,” nor is any of it indicative of a rendezvous with Tiger Woods.
But could such a story have been the cause of Friday morning’s episode, where Tiger Woods ended up in the street with his wife standing over him with a golf club, a window busted out of his SUV, and his face lacerated somehow without getting blood on the SUV’s steering wheel? Of course it could. That Elin Nordegren, Tiger Woods’ wife since 2004, might have read the stories and heard rumors of Tiger Woods cheating on her is all too plausible. Could the reported argument that the Woods’ had before his accident have been about the alleged affair? Again, it may have, although what the altercation was about has only been substantiated by hearsay and third party testimony. TMZ reported that a source close to Tiger Woods said that Elin Nordegren had confronted Woods about a possible affair and had attacked him, going so far as to chase him when he tried to leave, smashing out his Cadillac’s window with a golf club, and distracting him enough to hit a fire hydrant and run into a tree.
But, again, thus far it is all speculation. Tiger Woods and his wife aren’t answering questions. In fact, they have refused thus far to answer follow-up questions by both the Windermerre Police and the Florida Highway Patrol.
But does any of it have anything to do with Rachel Uchitel? Perhaps. And then again, maybe not. Simply because Elin Nordegren and Tiger Woods may have been embroiled in a heated altercation about the golfer’s possible philandering, the discussion may not have even mentioned Rachel Uchitel. It is unknown what the argument was about or who it may have involved. Police described the incident as deriving from a “domestic issue” and there is only the word of a source that Tiger Woods said anything about an altercation over allegations of an affair.
Does all this mean that Rachel Uchitel has a case against the National Enquirer? It is doubtful but she would have to prove that all the publicity gained from the National Enquirer‘s articles in some way damaged her reputation and livelihood. And although being labeled “mistress” and “homewrecker” may not be the most complimentary of terms, it is doubtful that having her name associated with the world’s most famous sports figure has actually hurt her as a party planner/socialite. No matter how good Gloria Allred is as a lawyer, proving defamation would be a difficult sell. However, going through the motions gives Rachel Uchitel some credibility.
It also gives Tiger Woods something to point out should he need to in a future confrontation with his wife…