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19th Hole

Phil Mickelson once challenged writer to ‘throw the first punch’ at him during PGA Championship

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The biography of Phil Mickelson, titled “Phil: The Rip-Roaring (and Unauthorized) Biography of Golf’s Most Colorful Superstar”, by Alan Shipnuck continues to provide fascinating stories about the mercurial golfer.

One part of the book reveals that Mickelson told Shipnuck to “throw the first punch” in an exchange.

The comments took place at the 1999 PGA Championship. The event was most famous for producing Sergio Garcia’s scissor kick and for a Tiger Woods victory. Phil struggled that week finishing in a tie for 57th place.

At the time, Shipnuck was writing “a weekly reader mailbag” for CNNSI.com. The mailbag featured a discussion online about Mickelson’s physique.

A reader had referred to him as “Full Mickelson”. Another one had discussed who was pregnant, Mickelson or his wife Amy. “Lefty” was understandably offended by the comments.

At his post tournament press conference, Shipnuck asked Phil an unrelated question.

“I’m not sure if he conflated readers’ words and made them mine or if he was miffed that I was giving a platform to such sophomoric discourse (in retrospect, a valid objection); either way, Phil was spoiling for a fight when, back at Medinah, I asked him a benign question for a Ryder Cup preview story.”

“I’m not going to answer that because I don’t respect you as a writer,” Shipnuck claims Mickelson said.

Then there was silence. Shipnuck claims the two went and to speak in a private tunnel near the grandstand.

He claims Mickelson told him what he wrote in his “little web column” was “bull****”.

Mickelson is said to have told him: “If you have a problem with me, just throw the first punch.”

Shipnuck claimed that Mickelson stepped in closer and said: “Just throw the first punch”.

Lefty then, when faced with stunned silence, said: “That’s what I thought”.

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17 Comments

17 Comments

  1. Pingback: This hilarious tale suggests Phil Mickelson may not be the wine expert everyone thinks he is – GolfWRX

  2. Thomas Woodward

    Jun 2, 2022 at 9:43 pm

    Writers, journalists, Congressional members, CEO’s etc. etc. The majority of them are 100% oxygen wasters and should be put-down like rabid animals…

  3. Pingback: Lifelong friend of Phil Mickelson provides update on Lefty – GolfWRX

  4. Get Real

    Jun 2, 2022 at 10:00 am

    These comments are really cracking me up. Look, Shipnuck has been doing this for a long time and he’s well respected by his peers. Much like the golfers they cover, golf writers don’t take kindly to other writers lying or cheating. Now he’s written a book about Full Phil and folks are mad. Phil has always thought he was the smartest guy in the room and could get away with anything. Now the real stuff is coming out and he’s nowhere to be found. If this stuff weren’t true then Phil wouldn’t be on his self-imposed hiatus. Instead he would’ve just come out and said it wasn’t true and he would’ve played the Players, the Masters, and defended his PGA Championship. You can still love Phil but actions have consequences. It’s also interesting to note that few, if any, Of Phil’s peers have even tried to defend him or his actions.

  5. Ed Bobich

    Jun 1, 2022 at 1:37 pm

    I am not sure who looks worse, Shipnuck or Mickelson. I will say that nothing I have read about Mickelson surprises me. I have never liked him and I still cannot believe that he did not serve time for insider trading. On the other hand, Shipnuck comes across as someone with an axe to grind. If Shipnuck had any guts, he would have never written the book and instead confronted Phil face-to-face.

  6. PhilLacksIntegrity

    Jun 1, 2022 at 1:14 pm

    All the Phil fanboys coming out to protect the face of sports washing, looks like they lack integrity just like Phil. Phil is a gambaholic chasing the money, nothing more than that.

  7. DREW TAYLOR

    Jun 1, 2022 at 10:58 am

    Shipnuck is a jerk who is just out to cause trouble and make money for it. Someday I hope someone does a bio on him and expose all the dirt this guy ever did in his life..

  8. Vas

    Jun 1, 2022 at 10:44 am

    Please stop! I already like Phil enough, I don’t need yet another reason to… like trying to bait some self-important gasbag into getting knocked out.

  9. cb

    Jun 1, 2022 at 10:36 am

    Thats actually pretty damn funny. Throw the first punch, whos pregnant you or Amy. LMFASOOOOOOO

  10. Pingback: Amateur golfer has reportedly received an unbelievable sum to play in LIV Golf series – GolfWRX

  11. Dave

    May 31, 2022 at 11:27 pm

    Way to go Phil!! Writers a bunch of p#&&!&$ that want no repercussions to their actions. Chalk one up for Phil.

  12. Andrew Smith

    May 31, 2022 at 11:23 pm

    I’m halfway through reading the book – its of a pathetically amateur standard. Gross sensationalising for 15 minutes of fame and to make a quick buck.

  13. Brandon

    May 31, 2022 at 8:41 pm

    Probably should have beat that dude’s ass 23 years ago.

  14. Johnny Penso

    May 31, 2022 at 6:19 pm

    Just when I didn’t think I could like Phil any more than I already do, Shipnuck comes through with a good one!

  15. Pingback: How many pro golfers use a 3-iron? The answer might surprise you – GolfWRX

  16. Joey5Picks

    May 31, 2022 at 1:30 pm

    FIGJAM quickly moving to the top of the leaderboard for least liked player. The more we hear, the more unlikable he becomes. Go to the Bonesaw Golf League, please.

    • Holden Tudiks

      May 31, 2022 at 10:01 pm

      I still like Phil, and you’ll do nothing about it.

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19th Hole

Charlie Woods gives first interview after firing 68 at Notah Begay qualifying event

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Over the weekend, Charlie Woods participated in the Notah Begay III Junior National Golf Championship at Mission Inn Resort in Howey-in-the-Hills, Florida.

With his dad on his bag, Charlie did not disappoint.

Charlie finished tied for fourth in the Boys 12-13 division thanks to a career low four-under 68.

After his round, Charlie gave an interview and in the process gave a lot of credit to the fifteen-time major champion helping him out throughout the event.

“Dad told me to stay patient. I just played steady golf,” Charlie said.

I’m sure we will hear a lot more of the name “Charlie Woods” in the coming years.

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19th Hole

‘He didn’t look right’ – Tiger’s mobility issues reportedly continue as he caddies for son Charlie

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Over the weekend, 13-year-old Charlie Woods played in a junior golf tournament and shot a career low 68 on his way to a second-place finish.

As great as the performance was for Charlie, a big part of the story was who he had on his bag. That’s right, his dad.

Tiger Woods caddied for Charlie during the event, and according to those in attendance, he “didn’t look right.”

According to @TWLegion on Twitter, the man who took a picture of Tiger Woods said he was in a cart all day and didn’t look completely healthy.

This adds further speculation to the health concerns of Tiger Woods. Many speculated that his lack of presence at the Presidents Cup was odd, considering he could have used a cart like the other captains of the American team. He was on the phone with Davis Love III during the match, but it was reported that he wasn’t in attendance due to “physical limitations.”

The last time we saw Tiger on the golf course — a missed cut at The Open in July — he didn’t look like he was ready to play professional golf competitively. Although his caddie Joe LaCava has speculated that we could see Woods tee it up a few times prior to the Masters in 2023, the recent developments don’t seem promising.

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19th Hole

‘I was pretty p****d off’ – Justin Thomas on Si-Woo Kim’s shush celebration during feisty Sunday clash

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With the Internationals down four points heading into Sunday singles in the Presidents Cup, The United States threw out their de-facto leader Justin Thomas in the first match of the day. In a match where it was crucial to set the tone, International Team captain Trevor Immelmann surprisingly chose Si Woo Kim to counter Thomas.

The South Korean did not disappoint, and although the United States went on to win pretty comfortably, Kim did his job in defeating Thomas by 1-up.

Tensions ran high throughout the day, with Thomas seemingly upset over Kim’s unwillingness to concede a few short putts early in the match.

It was a bit surprising to see Thomas take exception with Kim’s insistence that he finish out some short putts, considering that the Internationals needed to make up quite a large deficit. Additionally, Thomas had been a stickler all week about giving his opponents anything that bordered on “a gimme”.

After a big par putt on the 15th, a clearly emotional “JT” gave a big fist pump in celebration. Usually quite reserved, Si Woo Kim took notice and quieted the crowd after a big par save to match Thomas.

Once again, Thomas took exception to Si Woo, admitting after the match that he was “p***** off “at Kim’s theatrics.

“Honestly, at the time, I was pretty p***** off,” said Thomas afterwards. “I think when you’re in the moment, when you’re on the other side of it, it’s something that gets you motivated, gets you pumped up a little bit.”

When asked about his reaction to the made putt, Kim said he saw Patrick Reed do the celebration at the 2014 Ryder Cup and wanted to do something to match Thomas’ energy.

“I saw that Patrick [Reed] did it before, and yeah, JT give me fist pump, and then I had to do it. And I had to make it, and I made it. Then, like, yeah, I had to do something. I think that give me more energy.”

After all was said and done, Thomas admitted that Kim had the right to celebrate his victory.

“He hit the shots and made the putts better than I did the last three holes or, really, the last nine holes when he needed to,” said Thomas. “So, I can say whatever I want about it, but he beat me. So he has the upper hand on me. But we won the Cup so that’s all that matters.”

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