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Phil Mickelson to miss the U.S. Open to attend daughter’s graduation

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If you’re mulling over your U.S. Open punts, remove Phil Mickelson from your consideration. Lefty announced he doesn’t plan on teeing it up at Erin Hills. The reason? His daughter Amanda is graduating from high school—and she’s giving the commencement address.

The Pacific Ridge School’s commencement ceremony is scheduled for the morning of June 15, which is during the first round of the U.S. Open.

He’s yet to withdraw officially, but as Mickelson said, “barring something unforeseen, I won’t be there.” “Something unforeseen,” would be a situation like a washed out first round with the opening round of play beginning on Friday—a remote possibility indeed.

“I wanted to make sure they [the USGA] had enough notice to accommodate it…So that’s why I’m saying something today, but it doesn’t look good for me playing. But I’m really excited about this moment in our family’s life,” Mickelson told reporters.

Mickelson hasn’t missed a major championship since the 2009 Open Championship when his wife was battling cancer. He’ll turn 47 during the tournament at Erin Hills, his long, unfortunate history of runner-up finishes at the U.S. Open is well documented.

Still, even with Father Time starting at Mickelson through the rearview, he seems comfortable with his decision to skip the championship.

Regarding the graduation, Mickelson said: It’s one of those things you just show up. You just need to be there. It wasn’t really something that we discussed, because it really wasn’t much of a decision.”

Like his history of near-misses at the USGA’s major, Mickelson’s series of scheduling conflicts during the tournament is part of “Lefty the family man” lore. He wore a beeper at Pinehurst in 1999, as his wife was on the verge of giving birth. At the 2012 U.S. Open, Mickelson flew home for Amanda’s eighth-grade graduation, catching a flight back just in time for the opening round.

And speaking of Amy, here’s what she told Karen Crouse about her husband’s decision. “Phil desperately wants to win the U.S. Open. “I would have totally understood if he needed to play…We could have done a video or this or that.”

A “video or this or that” isn’t something Phil Mickelson, the father, is comfortable with. Even the left-handers detractors have to respect that.

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40 Comments

40 Comments

  1. Mad-Mex

    Jun 8, 2017 at 9:01 pm

    I bet those who disagree and are bagging on Phil are the same drunk morons who yell “Mash Potato” “Ba-baboey” after a player hit his drive.

  2. Sam

    Jun 6, 2017 at 7:13 pm

    Phil should donate some money and have them move the graduation to Saturday so he can do both

    • Jalan

      Jun 10, 2017 at 3:23 pm

      Yeah, right. Make every other parent and child change their plans, so the celebrity golfer can have his cake and eat it too.

  3. Dave R

    Jun 6, 2017 at 9:22 am

    Family first . You only have one of them. Could not agree more. Good on him.

  4. Taylor

    Jun 5, 2017 at 8:57 pm

    She’s obviously smart enough to realize it’s the US OPEN the only major your father hasn’t won in his life long journey in golf. Remember when you looked back at high school and realized what a joke it was…

    • Juice

      Jun 6, 2017 at 3:57 pm

      So because it was a joke for you his daughter should consider it a joke? You must’ve been the joke. SMH. Good for you Phil!

  5. leo vincent

    Jun 5, 2017 at 4:55 pm

    Not something I would have done considering he only has a few more competitive U.S Opens left but the decision is his and other people’s opinions are meaningless

  6. Bishop

    Jun 5, 2017 at 12:30 pm

    I completely agree with Phil’s decision, even though I’m not personally a father, yet. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for his daughter, and she has obviously worked incredibly diligently for her own accomplishments, even in high school. It seems to me that Phil is cognizant of this accomplishment, and I can’t describe how proud I’d be of being able to see my own child give a commencement speech. Maybe he feels that he could be a competitor in another year at the US Open, or maybe he doesn’t feel it’s important because he doesn’t think he can get the W. Or, maybe he doesn’t care, because family is more important to him than another year at the US Open….

    Kudos to him.

  7. Tom54

    Jun 5, 2017 at 12:08 pm

    Seems to me if the High School scheduled the ceremony on a Thursday and not on the weekend then they certainly can up it to Wednesday. I agree that Phil could make a donation in his daughters honor to the school things would work out fine. If they change the date for you Phil, then you best contend

  8. Brian

    Jun 5, 2017 at 12:02 pm

    I understand him missing the Open given that his daughter is speaking. If she were just walking…I mean…you’re expected to graduate HS.

  9. DaveT

    Jun 5, 2017 at 11:30 am

    I’m not a Phil fan at all, but I have huge respect for this decision. I can’t understand the people who put it down. His daughter is class president and valedictorian! That’s big! It’s not something you get in a box of cereal. I wonder how many of the haters came close to a shot at valedictorian themselves.

  10. Jeff

    Jun 5, 2017 at 9:23 am

    He should just make a sizable donation to the HS to have them move the whole graduation ceremony. Win-win, the HS gets some extra funds and Phil gets to play in the open.

    • Jalan

      Jun 10, 2017 at 3:26 pm

      How does every other family “Win”? What if they have plans they can’t change for some wealthy privileged golfer?

  11. Ronald Montesano

    Jun 5, 2017 at 9:02 am

    If Phil never wins a US Open, he’ll be in pretty solid company with 3-Major Champions. Tom Watson, Arnold Palmer, Nancy Lopez, Lee Trevino, Walter Hagen, Byron Nelson, to list six. Can’t fault the guy, can’t fault the school, bravo for the daughter, onward and upward. Lavaplatos.

  12. High Cut

    Jun 5, 2017 at 1:20 am

    Is there a tonne of dogleg-rights?

  13. setter02

    Jun 4, 2017 at 7:35 pm

    Lol, the haters are strong with this one! And, pathetic…

  14. Mad-Mex

    Jun 4, 2017 at 6:28 pm

    I think those who are against his decision are not or have not been fathers.

    • Jalan

      Jun 10, 2017 at 3:27 pm

      I’m not convinced they’re even adults.

  15. Tyler

    Jun 4, 2017 at 5:20 pm

    Guys come on. His daughter is speaking at her high school graduation. You’re telling me you’d miss that if you were him? That’s a bad life mistake. This should be common sense.

    • Rwj

      Jun 4, 2017 at 6:26 pm

      Then why didn’t he actually withdraw? Bc he hopes all the PR will cause the school to change? An actual good person wouldn’t have needed to tell everyone about it

      • Mad-Mex

        Jun 4, 2017 at 6:40 pm

        Serious?!?! Are YOU out of high school? “Why didn’t he withdraw? Because he hopes the school will change the date with all this media attention. A good person would not have the need to tell everyone about it,,,, notice the difference? Just one of the many examples the sentence structure can be changed.

        Actually, a good person would respect another person’s decision.

  16. Jasian Day

    Jun 4, 2017 at 4:18 pm

    It’s kinda sad when you think about it….
    Phil and Amy have such spoiled bratty kids.
    The “diva” of the family has to have daddy watch her achieve what millions of other people do every single year.
    I pity the future husband. Whole new level of selfishness

    • K Unt

      Jun 5, 2017 at 2:35 am

      Why you so jealous?

    • BB

      Jun 5, 2017 at 5:48 am

      What a sad, pathetic post.

    • Big Richard Cox

      Jun 5, 2017 at 7:18 am

      I liked the post! Hit the nail on the head.

    • birdie

      Jun 5, 2017 at 9:25 am

      his daughter is giving the speech. She is the class president and the valedictorian. so many people with their opinions yet completely ignorant of the facts surrounding the situation.

  17. ooffa

    Jun 4, 2017 at 1:25 pm

    Whoa, Whoa, Whoa, did I read that right. High School? I could understand if it was graduation from the doctorate program at Harvard or M.I.T. But high school! Go play tournament. Do your job!

    • birdie

      Jun 5, 2017 at 9:26 am

      yeah…class president and the valedictorian. giving a speech. i’d want to watch my kid graduate

      • ooffa

        Jun 5, 2017 at 10:12 am

        Sounds like she’s a real smart kid. She more than anyone should therefore understand why her Dad should play in the US Open.

  18. SH

    Jun 4, 2017 at 10:28 am

    He da best

  19. Progolfer

    Jun 4, 2017 at 10:18 am

    Nice gesture by Phil, but an even nicer gesture would be if his daughter forced her father to chase his dream– something I’m sure Phil encourages her and her siblings to do– of winning the US Open. Imagine the spark that would give Phil. He unexpectedly won the Masters when his wife was batting breast cancer. His daughter has a tremendous opportunity to give her father the greatest gift she ever could. If only she did and he went on to win the Grand Slam because of it!! That would complete his career in style.

  20. stephen Harasti

    Jun 4, 2017 at 10:01 am

    The course must not setup well for him

  21. Golferguy

    Jun 4, 2017 at 9:42 am

    He’s a good Dad.

    • Jasian Day

      Jun 4, 2017 at 1:46 pm

      Not to that one kid in Ohio or wherever

  22. Jasian Day

    Jun 4, 2017 at 9:24 am

    It ain’t like he was gonna win or anything

  23. Mad-Mex

    Jun 4, 2017 at 5:10 am

    This should be getting more news coverage than Tiger Woods

    Wonder who is the low life who shanked this?

    Wonder if he will have the backbone to admit it?

  24. Family Guy

    Jun 4, 2017 at 5:07 am

    Incredibly unselfish act!

  25. E

    Jun 4, 2017 at 1:54 am

    Awwwwww…. isn’t that special.

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Tour Photo Galleries

10 interesting photos from Monday at the Zurich Classic

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GolfWRX is live from the 2018 Zurich Classic at TPC Louisiana, were, among other things, a giant three-legged crocodile roams.

Now in it’s second year, the tournament’s unique two-man team format has attracted a wealth of top talent, including 10 of the top 14 golfers in the OWGR. We’re on the scene snapping bag pictures, and have WITB looks at Matt Jones and Roberto Diaz, in addition to a general gallery from the TPC Louisiana range.

Let’s dig in.

Matt Jones doesn’t need his name embroidered on his headcovers: tape and a marker will do just fine, thanks

Last week, Faaaabel the Goat. This week, someone who would eat Faaabel

Roberto Diaz: Brand agnostic

Wesley Bryan’s Taco Bell(t) lives

Homemade putting aid or soon to be seen on a Golf Channel infomercial (or both)?

UDI with a side of lead

Shaft bags: Assemble!

Roberto Diaz Fourteen RM wedge

What more do you need in life?

A bouquet of Circle T putter covers

Check out our photos from Monday below!

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Discussion: See what GolfWRX Members are saying about the photos in our forums

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Monday’s Photos from the 2018 Zurich Classic

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GolfWRX is live from the 2018 Zurich Classic at TPC Louisiana (par 72; 7,425 yards), designed by Pete Dye with consultants Steve Elkington and Kelly Gibson.

The Zurich Classic is a unique event on the PGA Tour because it’s not an individual stroke-play event. Instead, the format consists of two-man teams playing best-ball on Thursday and Saturday, and alternate-shot on Friday and Sunday.

Last year, Cameron Smith and Jonas Blixt won the event after four playoff holes against Kevin Kisner and Scott Brown. The Smith/Blixt duo will be back to defend their title, and the Kisner/Brown pairing will be back avenging their loss.

Other notable pairings in the field include Daniel Berger/Gary Woodland, Wesley Bryan/Jon Rahm, Patrick Reed/Patrick Cantlay, John Daly/Rory Sabbatini, Jason Day/Ryan Ruffels, David Duval/Jim Furyk, Tony Finau/Daniel Summerhays, Sergio Garcia/Rafa Cabrera Bello, J.B. Holmes/Brand Snedeker, Matt Kuchar/Bubba Watson, Louis Oosthuizen/Charl Schwartzel, Sean O’Hair/Jimmy Walker, Pat Perez/Jason Dufner, Justin Rose/Henrik Stenson, Jordan Spieth/Ryan Palmer, Justin Thomas/Bud Cauley and more!

Check out our photos from the event below!

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Discussion: See what GolfWRX Members are saying about the photos in our forums

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Tour Rundown: Moriya Jutanugarn and Andrew Landry win their first titles

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It was a week of firsts on two of the world’s major professional tours. Moriya Jutanugarn claimed her first LPGA title in an impressive manner, while 2016 U.S. Open surprise Andrew Landry seized control in Houston to inscribe his name on the winner’s trophy for an initial time. Elsewhere, a pair of underdogs upset the favorites at the Champions Tour’s Missouri affair, while two veterans added additional titles to their resumes in Europe and on the Web.Com tour. It’s an interesting brew in this week’s cauldron, so let’s give it a stir and see what we taste in this week’s Tour Rundown.

Landry holds off resurgent trio to claim Houston Open

Andrew Landry led that U.S. Open at Oakmont after day one, and hung around the top of the leader board until the fourth day. When his name resurfaced at this week’s Tour stop, few were certain he could hold off a resurgent Zach Johnson, the two-time major winner. Well, few other than Zach Johnson thought Landry might pull it off.

How Landry locked in

From the 10th hole on Friday, through the same hole on Sunday, Landry made zero bogeys. He had 13 birdies in that stretch, on a course that gives a few up, but not in buckets. That 36 hole run of brilliance, including birdies on Sunday’s first three holes, staked Landry to an advantage that he would not relinquish. For the entire week, only four bogeys dotted his scorecards, and two of those came on Thursday. Landry’s putter was hot all week, and his driving game was laser-accurate. The sum total: welcome to the winner’s circle, Mr. Landry.

Click here to see the clubs Landry used to win the 2018 Valero Texas Open

Who made a run?

It wasn’t Johnson. Iowa’s favorite son hasn’t won since the 2015 British Open, although his game has shown its old fire of late. Johnson couldn’t find a groove on day 4, making as many bogeys in that round as Landry did all week. In the end, Johnson had a top-5 finish, amid signs that another victory may not be far in the offing. Sean O’Hair had the low round (66) of the day, and that magic was enough to boost him to a second-place tie with young Trey Mullinax, who followed a Saturday 62 with a notable 69 to rock steady. Jimmy Walker, finally recovered from a bout of illness, had the day’s 2nd-lowest score of 67, and he moved all the way to 4th spot.

Mighty Moriya holds off Korean trio for first tour title

Moriya Jutanugarn of Thailand has been close before. She has seen little sister Ariya hoist victory awards before. On Sunday, it was her turn. Jutanugarn and Marina Alex were two of the leader with no title to their credit, heading into the closing 18 holes. While the key to victory still eludes the young American, it was Jutanugarn’s turn to triumph.

What Moriya discovered on Sunday

Actually, she dug deepest on Saturday. The older sibling opened round three with a double bogey, stood 3-over on the day after six holes, and appeared to be sinking. The ship’s wheel steadied with two birdies and hole-out eagle coming home, and then it began the final day with four birdies and no bogeys in the first 15 holes. A late bogey served only to add faux drama, as Jutanugarn calmly closed the deal for victory the first.

Park, Young and Yeon can’t win this case

Reading a bit like a law firm, Inbee Park, Jin Young Ko and So Yeon Ryu made their runs at Moriya. Inbee had a bogey at the turn, and needed perfection on Sunday. She didn’t get it, so a tie for second was in the offing. Ko might have had the best opportunity at day’s start, but a 2-over outward nine took her too far off pace for a 3-under inward half, to provide recovery. She also came second, at 10-under. Ryu put an opening bogey behind with four birdies through 12 holes, but could not go deeper over the closing stretch. Her fourth-place finish was her best of 2018.

Levy wins for third consecutive year on European Tour

France’s Alexander Levy nearly has a five-year win streak. His first two tour titles came in 2014. He skipped 2015, but hasn’t missed in the subsequent years. His work in Morocco this week added up to a one-shot win over a literal blast from the past, Spain’s Alvaro Quiros. Eight golfers finished within three strokes of the top spot, adding drama to the finish at Royal Dar-Es-Salaam.

Nothing spectacular leads Levy to win

There were no great streaks of brilliance, no runs of multiple birdies, for the 28-year old. All that he did, efficiently, was make enough birdies to stay ahead of his pursuers. After bogey at the antepenultimate hole on Sunday, Levy responded with a dart at the par-three 17th, to re-establish his lead. The win was the fifth of his career.

See the clubs Levy used to win

Oh so close for Oh so many

Let’s begin with Quiros. The Spaniard, compared with Dustin Johnson (for his length off the tee) in his early years, has been adrift. Sunday was his best chance in forever to secure a tour title. His first 16 holes were a tangle of bogeys and a pair of birdies. The Iberian closed admirably, with birdies at the final pair, to claim solo second, one back of Levy. Also close were Mikko Illonen (tied for third with three others at 7-under) and England’s Andy Sullivan, one more back at 6-under, in a tie for seventh.

Two more for the road: Axley wins on Web, while Broadhurst/Triplett claim Legends

Eric Axley would have preferred to win his 3rd professional event in glorious fashion. He’ll take a rain-shortened title at the North Mississippi Classic, his second career Web.Com title and his first title of any sort in 12 years. Waaaay back in 2006, Axley won the very same Houston Open (see above) contested this week on the PGA Tour, and a bit of success was predicted for the left-hander. Success, as we know, doesn’t come to all hands, and Axley was able to birdie his final two holes on Saturday to stake a one-shot advantage. Tied for second were the USA’s Willy Wilcox, Columbia’s Sebastian Munoz, and Korea’s K.H. Lee.

Triplett and Broadhurst birdie 1st playoff hole for victory

The rules for the Bass Pro Shops Legends of Golf are slightly simpler than those of field hockey, which means that they aren’t very simple. Both courses in use boast par-3 holes alone, but each has a different number of holes, so numbers on the scoreboard are meaningless. With the two Spaniards (Olazabal and Jimenez), the defending champs (Franco and Singh) and two major champions (Lehman and Langer) in the mix, the undervalued pairing of Kirk Triplett (he of the hat) and Paul Broadhurst (he of the …) were not anyone’s favorites to emerge. And here we are.

No one seemed bent on making any heroic moves on Sunday, so it came down to which teams would find their way. Lehman/Langer joined the eventual winners at the 9th hole. Triplett played the hole to perfection: tee shot into bunker, bunker shot into hole, thank you very much. No birdie putts were holed, and the title belonged to the unlikely pairing of Kirk and Paul.

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