It has taken me a few hours to get over the shock of what I, and billions of others, saw this evening at the US Open. Phil Mickelson, the most talented golfer in men’s golf, sitting at the 17th tee box with a two shot lead and after two holes loses the US Open by a stroke. I get a little nauseated when I think of the club selections he made off the 17th and 18th.
Now I know Phil likes to play aggressive and will try shots to see if he could make them. I like that in him and like for him to do that when there is a calculated risk involved. But, today, a nuclear physics could not have calculated the risk factor for the shot he took on 18.
I know, I was not there, and it is Phil’s shot to make, but like some many other who were watching (and have played golf under pressure) can only assume that there were other things on Phil’s mind or maybe not.
Phil looked like a prize fighter in the 15th round. He looked completely beat. His last two drives looked like he was just flailing at the ball. His swing on the 18th tee looked like my over the top hacker swing and he got the same result.
Now I know we all have the solutions…like why he didn’t he take the 4 iron and hit it 245 to set up a 220 shot to the green and work for a par. It was his tournament to win.
Looking back to the Masters, you didn’t see Phil muff so many shots on his way into the clubhouse? Did ya? Was it because he had Freddy walking with him that kept him from burning out? That could be…
What Phil taught every junior golfer who watched his meltdown was good and bad. He showed them to go for the shot they want to go for, but he also showed them the worst tournament management the game has seen in a long time. Not since Tin Cup has there been such a melt down.