Sunday, June 18, 2006


OK, I was going to wait until Monday morning to post this ... but I couldn't sleep on this one.

Matter of fact, as one of the players in the movie Slapshot says as the Hanson brothers come on the ice for the first time, "I can't believe my freakin' eyes!"

How in the heck did Phil Mickelson lose the U.S. Open? Well, I have the answer. Mickelson may just well be one of the most arrogant golfers I have ever seen.

To start, he was lucky to be in the tournament after missing most of the fairways from the tee all day long. At one point, NBC shows that he is 2-10 in hitting fairways. My first thought in seeing that is that he cannot win the U.S. Open with that kind of percentage from the tee, right? Wrong - at that point he was still tied for the lead.

Then he took the lead with two holes to go. People were falling apart all around him as if to hand him his first ever U.S. Open. I can still see Payne Stewart holding his face after he beat Mickelson to win the Open at Pinehurst and I am thinking the gods are lining this up for him.

Jim Furyk misses a putt on 18 that would have caused a playoff with Ogilvy. Colin Montgomerie also missed a chance for a playoff on the last hole as well. Nevermind Padraig Harington going bogey, bogey, bogey to play his way out of a chance of his first major title.

So, back to Mickelson. He's standing on the 18th tee and he finds out from a scorer that Monty just double-bogeyed the hole. All he needs to do is par the hole to win the Open. PAR! Nothing fancy. Nothing heroic. Just par. Why on Earth do you pull driver out of your bag? You haven't hit it all day long, why on the most important shot of the day do you think, "now I can hit this straight?"

The 18th at Winged Foot is a 450-yard par four. How far could Phil have hit his five-wood or his two-iron??? Probably about 250-270? That leaves you 200-yards to the hole from the center of the fairway. Do you like your chances of par from there??? I sure as heck do.

Now, there's one more person to blame for Mickelson's collapse, and that is his caddy Jim Makai aka Bones. If you remember the movie Tin Cup where Romeo, Tin Cup's caddy, got in a fight with him on a hole over what he should do. He got so mad that he started snapping his clubs right there on the course. Usually, I wouldn't condone this behavior. But for the love of god Bones, why didn't you just snap his driver in two?

But what you will hear everyone that watches golf and knows Phil say is, "that's just the way he plays the game. He's a gambler."

That's all well and good, but for some stupid reason I thought he might have changed that attitude by winning three majors and realizing that sometimes par wins you tournaments.

NBC had a shot of him sitting with his wife, Amy, in the locker room after he gift wrapped the tournament to Geoff Ogilvy. He was and will be in shock for a while. But to be honest - can we really be THAT shocked with this result??

It's not like we haven't seen him choke before. He hasn't done it in a while and that is what threw, at least me, for a bogey.

Wonder what Tiger was thinking watching in Florida?

1 comment:

Jeff Epstein said...

Maybe now he'll get the bra he needs.