One of the most famous player-caddie duos ever in the sport of golf is no longer.

In dual statements released on Twitter, Phil Mickelson and Jim “Bones” Mackay have mutually and officially split after 25 years together. Bones started looping for Mickelson in 1992, the same year Mickelson turned pro. Mickelson, now 47-years old, has since amassed five major championship victories and 49 professional victories and has competed in 11 Ryder Cup events.

According to Mickelson, there was not a “single incident” that has caused the split, but rather is simply “the right time for a change.” His brother Tim Mickelson will be on the bag throughout the remainder of the year, according to Mickelson’s statement.

Phil’s Statement

After 25 very rewarding and memorable years, Bones and I have mutually decided to end our player-caddie relationship. Our decision is not based on a single incident. We just feel it’s the right time for a change.
Bones is one of the most knowledgable and dedicated caddies in the world. He is always prepared and has the ability to make decisions in pressure packed situations. Bones is without a doubt one of the most thoughtful people that I have ever known. The next player to work with him will obviously be very lucky.
My relationship and history with Bones far exceeds golf. He has been one of the most important and special people in my life since the day we met and I will always be grateful for everything he has done for me. Amy and I, and our children, will always think of Bones, Jen, Oliver, and Emma as family.
We are looking forward to sharing life and friendship with them forever. My brother Tim will be on my bag for the rest of the year. Bones has not used his veto this year andI heard a rumor that he is trying to pass his veto to Tim. For the record, vetoes are non-transferable.

Sincerely,
Phil

Bones’ Statement

After an amazing 25-year run, Phil and I have mutually decided to go our separate ways. Player-caddie relationships don’t often last that long. I will always be grateful that I was around to witness so much of Phil’s career. When Phil hired me in 1992, I had one dream: to caddie in a Ryder Cup. Last year, at Hazeltine, Phil played in his 11th straight Ryder Cup. It was so cool to have a front row seat.
I wish Phil nothing but the best. His game is still at an elite level, and when he wins in the future (definitely the Masters), I will be among the first to congratulate him.
I do want to say for the record that I did not use my “veto” this year. I would like to pass it along to Tim, in all its glory.

Thank you Phil.
Sincerely,
Jim Bones Mackay

Twitter’s Reactions

Phil and Bones were as beloved as they were successful, so it’s natural that Twitter has reacted with nostalgia and disappointment.

Your Reaction?
  • 49
  • LEGIT8
  • WOW85
  • LOL3
  • IDHT3
  • FLOP2
  • OB0
  • SHANK21

21 COMMENTS

Not seeing your comment? Read our rules and regulations. Click "Report comment" to alert GolfWRX moderators to offensive or inappropriate comments.
  1. There is always a reason for a split. It’s to bad but probably best for [bones] he can start a new place in his life . Man 25 years with the same guy packin that bag it has to take a toll.

  2. Caddies are such an archaic part of the pro game and it bears no comparison to the rest of us peons.
    We’ll never know how good/bad these multi-millionaire pro golfers would be if they had no caddie …. just a push cart… or maybe a motorized push cart. I would accept no caddies and only a motor cart to carry the bag and player from green to green …. but we know that will never happen.

    • Man….I can;t really put my finger on it, but it’s slightly sad seeing these 2 split. Again I can’t put my finger on why, but I guess just cuz if you think one, you think of the other.

      Regardless wish them both well.

      Side note, I loved the Phil/Feherity episode where Phil broke down all small dewhat he/they thought for per shot.

    • Which young pro did you have in mind? Phil makes $50 million per year and flies the largest Gulfstream everywhere he (and Bones) goes — you really think your young pro has the buying power to overcome that?

  3. A great combo over the years. Who knows the reasoning but I felt for Bones lugging the bag mere months after double knee replacement. Could have been he put in more steps chasing Phils ball ;) and would like to change things up, maybe even some rest to get his legs under him. Heard a possibility is Maverick Maneely. In the end doubtful you’ll see a caddied golfer relationship Go that long.

  4. Rory needs to hire this man ASAP! He needs someone who’s assertive and can help him on the greens. I’m so sick of watching Rory hit a shot or putt and then look up at JP with complete bewilderment.

  5. My guess is something may have come out of Phil skipping this years us open. Hard to believe this late in his career he would make a change. Oh well best of luck to both of them.

    • That’s my lasting memory of Phil and Bones. After Phil dunked one in the water and they walk to the drop zone, Bones is saying something about the wind or whatever and Phil goes “I NEED NUMBERS!!!” in such an angry tone. It was classic.

    • Yeah, it _is_ like he plays in the big events. It’s also like he has priorities straight. Also like he knows what kinds of events in his life will be repeated, and which ones won’t.

LEAVE A REPLY