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19th Hole

‘It was like he was showing off’ – Golf writer details epic Phil Mickelson gambling spree



The potentially biggest selling golf biography of all time has yet to be published.

On May 17, Alan Shipnuck releases “Phil: The Rip-Roaring (and Unauthorized!) Biography of Golf’s Most Colorful Superstar,” a recollection of the public and private lives of Phil Mickelson, who is currently in exile away from the PGA Tour and most of the world’s media.

On the 5th of May, The FirePit Collective published an excerpt from the book, a tome that, of course, reveals all about the defending PGA champion and his thoughts around the Saudi-backed golf league and much more.

There can’t be many golf fans that remain unaware of what he said about the backers of the now-LIV golf series, but, as Shipnuck admits, “I watched all of this unfold in a state of dismay. I knew his blunt comments about the Saudis and the Tour would provoke controversy, but never imagined they would send a beloved Hall of Famer into exile for months.”

The book also delves into the deeper, some might say darker, side of the now 51-year-old.

According to the author, “It is important to note that Mickelson never opens his mouth without an agenda,” who reveals an incident where the Californian once went into a gambling frenzy in front of golf writer.

“John Hawkins was one of the most high-profile scribes on the golf beat, often breaking news for Golf World and Golf Digest. During a period when there was tremendous scrutiny about Mickelson’s gambling, Hawkins was alone in the locker room at the Tour Championship with Phil, who pulled out his phone and began placing bets on early-season college basketball games. ‘Over 20 minutes he must’ve made 50 bets,’” says the book. “’It was like he was showing off…’”

This put Hawkins in an especially awkward position because his then-wife worked for Hugo Boss, assisting Mickelson with his clothing deal. “’I’ve wondered about Phil’s motivation in being so brazen in front of me,’” Hawkins says. “’Was he trying to co-opt me? Was he testing my loyalty?’”

Hawkins never wrote about the gambling spree.

Ahead of the upcoming release, Shipnuck has revealed that the book isn’t an all-out attack on Mickelson, saying:

“Because of the heat surrounding the excerpt, plenty of folks have asked if this book is some kind of takedown. Far from it. I have always enjoyed Mickelson and devote a lot of the book to celebrating his virtues. It is undeniably fun to be in his orbit.”

Love it or loathe it, there has never been so much interest in a golf biography.

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  1. MrHogan

    May 12, 2022 at 9:41 pm

    The fact that it’s an “unauthorized “ biography should tell you everything about the person that wrote it. If you can’t find a story or any controversy, create it.

  2. Sandy Jones

    May 11, 2022 at 10:42 pm

    Shipsmuck needs to get kicked in his Shipnuts. Trying to gain some sort of name from Phil because he’s a no name journalist. I don’t care what Phil does in his spare time, I’m here for his golf.

  3. Eugene Gamblin

    May 11, 2022 at 1:50 pm

    What’s the big deal it’s his money and his opinion your just a leach trying to make a buck off a guy who his done nothing but give his whole life to the PGA. I think you really should get a life and leave these people alone

  4. Brandon

    May 10, 2022 at 10:48 pm

    This guy Shipnuck needs a good ass beating. Hopefully Phil can get the Saudis to do what they do best to “journalists”.

  5. Pingback: It was like he was showing off Golf writer details epic Phil Mickelson gambling spree - PostoLink

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19th Hole

‘Bullsh*t of an excuse’ – Tennis legend blasts ‘pathetic’ LIV Golf players



On the eve of the RBC Canadian Open and the Scandinavian Mixed events on either side of the water, the LIV Golf International Series continues to hog the headlines.

Impossible to ignore, it seems everyone has a view on the moral rights, or wrongs, of taking part in the Saudi-backed series, and current and former sports legends are of no exception.

Martina Navratilova, 18-time Grand Slam champion, was prompted to make her views known after Graeme McDowell’s response to one reporter’s question this week.

Under intense scrutiny at the press conference, G-Mac was asked about the controversial Saudi funding and admitted that the “Khashoggi situation was reprehensible,” before saying that “we are proud to help Saudi if they want to use golf to get to where they want to be.”

The nine-time Wimbledon ladies champion didn’t hide her feelings and called the comments, “pathetic”, adding, in frustration, “How exactly is golf going to help women in Saudi?!”

Explaining further her view on political morals over cash, the nine-time Wimbledon champ made clear her own experiences when invited to play at a controversial event.

“In the 80’s, Chris (Evert) and I were offered a lot of money to play an exhibition in South Africa and we refused. Something called #principle made that an easy decision,” she wrote, before saying “I am so disappointed with my fellow athletes for doing this… seems everybody has a price.”


And so it goes on…..

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19th Hole

‘Hypocrite!’ – Lee Westwood slammed by golf fans over not-so-old social media post



Lee Westwood is one of a number of big names that have signed up for the controversial Saudi-backed LIV Golf series that kicks off this week.

The Englishman has been unapologetic about his desire to compete in the series, saying last month that “change and competition are good in any walk of life” and that “sports and politics shouldn’t mix”, while at this week’s LIV press conference, Westy stated:

“But you know, like you, if there’s a pay increase, then at my age, I’d have to be stupid not to take it, or certainly have a good look at it and then not take it.”

The 54 hole, shotgun start, no-cut event guarantees large checks for anyone that competes regardless of performance, and with large sign-up fees involved, the 49-year-old is no doubt in for a lucrative summer.

Westwood is also a big football fan, and a tweet from last year has got many golf fans branding the Englishman as a hypocrite.

The tweet in question involved Westwood essentially taking a shot at the movers and shakers involved in the ill-fated European Super League that proposed to guarantee big money while removing meritocracy.

As you would expect, Twitter users had a field day with the re-emerged post, with the vast majority accusing Lee of hypocrisy, while fans of the hit show Succession will get a kick out of this response:

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19th Hole

Did Rory McIlroy just take a shot at his own equipment move?



Rory McIlroy just isn’t having it.

The defending RBC Canadian Open champion continues to refuse to have anything to do with the LIV Golf series, seemingly surprised and upset that many of his on-course rivals have jumped ship.

On Wednesday, the four-time Major champion re-iterated his desire to stick with the status quo, giving tradition and history of the game amongst his reasons.

“I’m a self-confessed golf nerd, historian, traditionalist. Most of the oldest events in our game are national opens,” said McIlroy, who mentioned his five national opens, six if you include Hong Kong’s. “One of the great things about our game is you can in some way compare yourself to historical figures, figures that I’ve never met before.

“I look at a trophy that my name’s on and Walter Hagen’s name is on there or Gene Sarazen or Byron Nelson or Ben Hogan or Jack Nicklaus or Arnold Palmer or whoever it is, and I think that’s one of the coolest things about our sport that not a lot of other sports can sort of tap into.”

“You look at the Canadian Open trophy and you look at the names that are on that. You’re putting your name in history by winning these national championships,” said McIlroy, ranked No. 8 in the world.

He seemingly then had a little jibe at the likes of Dustin Johnson and Ryder Cup team-mates Lee Westwood, Sergio Garcia, Greame McDowell and Ian Poulter by confirming, “Honestly, it’s something that money can’t buy or it’s something that money can’t give you.”

McIlroy has also told reporters this week that,”any decision you make in your life purely for money usually doesn’t end up going the right way.”

Whilst this was a phrase among a host of paragraphs discussing the you-know-what tour, was he talking from experience?

In 2013, a young McIlroy joined Tiger Woods as brand ambassador for Nike Golf, explaining this was for “a number of reasons.”

At the time, he explained, “”It’s a company and a brand that resonates with me. It’s young, it’s athletic and it’s innovative. They are committed to being the best, as am I. Signing with Nike is another step towards living out my dream.”

His initial struggles with the new clubs were widely reported although he did win two majors with the set – the 2014 PGA and Open Championships – before Nike decided to stop producing clubs and concentrate on apparel, the famous ‘swoosh’ appearing proud on McIlroy’s cap at press conferences this week.

Whatever the outcome with that lucrative deal, he is adamant that he isn’t going anywhere, let alone the LIV tour, at the moment.

“I can spend a lot of time at home with my family if I want to, prioritize the majors and there is nothing about my schedule or my life or my earnings or anything that I would change.”

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