Tag Archives: phil mickelson

Pinehurst No.2 Will Present Entirely New Challenge At 2014 U.S. Open

2014 U.S. OpenEach Major Championship has something unique to offer players and fans. The Masters has the tradition, the British Open has the links-style test, and the PGA Championship is exclusive to professionals in addition to the course layout being notoriously long.

And then there is the U.S. Open.

The second Major Championship of the year is upon us this week, as the United States Golf Association gets set to put on the 2014 U.S. Open from Pinehurst No.2. The U.S. Open is widely perceived to be the toughest test that players face all season long. The goal for the USGA is to have the winner set at even par. Compared to other events (even Major Championships) on the PGA Tour, having a winner finish at or above even par is quite the task these days. But the USGA has become the forefront authority for course layouts and pin locations designed to test every fiber of a player’s nerves and skill.

Pinehurst No.2 is hosting the U.S. Open for the third time in 15 years, but looks nothing like any of the previous two. The course will also host the U.S. Women’s Open next week on the LPGA Schedule, marking the first time the same venue will hold the championships in the same year.

A complete overhaul to the course layout means that players will be playing a different U.S. Open at Pinehurst than before. For one, there is no rough. That has been replaced by sand-like conditions outside of the fairways. They aren’t quite bunkers, but it isn’t quite rough. Whatever it is, players will most certainly be penalized if they stray from the fairway.

The problem is that there are a lot of Par 4 with the yardage starting with a ‘5’, and a par 5 starting with a ‘6’. That means that the golf course will be playing extremely long and players might be forced to hit driver on some of the holes if they hope to hit the greens in regulation.

While that might tend to favor the long hitters, it won’t if they can’t put it in the fairway. U.S. Opens place a premium on hitting fairways, and this might be the epitome of that sentiment.

But Pinehurst No.2 doesn’t let up after the tee shot. In fact, the course is most well-known for the turtleback greens that make it very difficult to hold. The greens have faded to the background because of the new look, but make no mistake this is where the tournament will be won.

Phil Mickelson said earlier this week that he believes he has a great chance based on his short game alone. With the greens difficult to hold, it will place an emphasis on creativity around the greens and saving pars.

Don’t be surprised if the winning score this week is above par. Players might have a tough time adjusting to the new layout with weird lies sure to happen in the sand.

Tiger Woods Missed Secondary Cut At Farmers Insurance Open; Cause For Concern?

Tiger WoodsMany thought that Tiger Woods would come out and win the 2014 Farmers Insurance Open this past week. After all, he had won the event seven times before + Torrey Pines is a golf course that he loves to play.

After the first couple of rounds Woods was right around the cut line, needing a low third round to shoot back up into the conversation.

The opposite happened.

Woods needed an eight-foot putt on the 18th hole Saturday to stay-off an 80. That’s right, Woods carded a 79 during the third round. What’s more, is that Woods missed the secondary cut on the PGA Tour. A secondary cut is a cut made at the 54-hole mark when there are more than 78 players playing on the weekend. Those players still get paid for making a 36-hole cut, but do not get the chance to compete on Sunday.

Now of course the questions center on Tiger and his upcoming events. Woods was rather positive on his performance though. Rather than categorizing it as catastrophic with the big number 79, he merely said he was a fraction off. On a golf course like Torrey Pines’ South layout that can easily turn a 69 into a 79. But it is rather concerning considering the success the No.1 ranked player in the world has had.

I say let’s cut him some slack for this one. It’s one event. And not just that, it’s the first event he’s played in 2014.

If Woods puts up some more mid-70s rounds through February and March on into the Bay Hill, then around that time we can begin to seriously question what in the world is going on. But until that point comes, let’s just sit back and watch him get his year underway.

We probably won’t see Woods until the Accenture Match Play Championship, so that is not even a stroke play round. His next stroke play event will likely come at the Honda Classic near his home in Florida to open up the Florida Swing.

Another player who had difficulties this week was Phil Mickelson. Lefty admitted he had back pain during the tournament and had to get several treatments. This is the first time in his career that Mickelson has undergone back treatments. However, he is no stranger to playing in pain with the arthritis in his joints.

Woods and Mickelson aren’t getting any younger that’s for sure. But still I think we can expect these two to have some good years in 2014.

Tiger Woods And Phil Mickelson Ready To Take On Torrey Pines For 2014 Farmers Insurance Open

Tiger Woods And Phil MickelsonTiger Woods and Phil Mickelson are set to renew their rivalry with each other this week at Torrey Pines for the Farmers Insurance Open. Ok, maybe it’s not a one-on-one situation in their minds, but fans sure like to make it that way. There’s no question that these two players are the most-popular in the sport. While the 2013-14 PGA Tour season has been underway since the fall, this is the first appearance for both in 2014. Continue reading

Phil Mickelson 2014 PGA Tour Player Preview

Phil MickelsonPhil Mickelson won the tournament that no one (even himself) thought he could win, in 2013. Lefty’s victory at the British Open was huge on several levels. First, it took away the pain of losing the U.S. Open and recording a sixth runner-up finish at the event. Second, it brought Mickelson back to the forefront of the conversation as a champion rather than bridesmaid in Majors.

The 2013 PGA Tour season was a strong one for Mickelson. He won just two times (three less than Tiger), but the victories were significant. Heading into 2014 Mickelson appears ready to contend for Majors once again. Continue reading

2013 HSBC Champions Field As Strong As Ever; FedEx Cup Points Now On The Line

2013 HSBC ChampionsIf we go by the calendar year, it’s the last World Golf Championships event for the PGA Tour. But with the PGA Tour adopting the wraparound schedule for the 2013-14 season, it’s actually the first WGC event of the new season.

The addition of the added value to the FedEx Cup points for the first time is also bringing out some of the top players in the world, which will make for a fantastic field this week in China.

There will be 78 players teeing it up at the 2014 HSBC Champions event, represented by 21 total countries for a very international affair. Continue reading

2013 CIMB Classic Has Best Field Yet Thanks To FedEx Cup Points On The Line

CIMB ClassicThere are a bunch of firsts this year at the 2013 CIMB Classic. It’s the first time that the tournament is being played at Kuala Lumpur Golf Club, it’s the first time that a Masters invitation will be awarded to the winner, and it’s the first time that it will be an official FedEx Cup points event.

The end result is that the field from top-to-bottom is bringing out many more notable names overall than in years past. Sure, Tiger Woods played in the 2012 CIMB Classic, but on the whole the field is every bit as strong, and likely stronger even without Woods in the field for the 2013 edition. Continue reading

PGA Tour Adopts Wraparound Schedule For 2013-14 Season

PGA TourPlayers and fans of the PGA Tour will be in for a much different type of season over the coming calendar year. It starts with the fact that there really isn’t an offseason like there has been in the past. That’s because the PGA Tour made the move to label the six events in the fall and winter as official FedEx Cup events.

Rather than having the new season start in January in Hawaii, the PGA Tour season will actually cover two calendar years going forward in a wraparound set up. In fact, the 2013-14 season already got underway last week with the Frys.com Open. Continue reading

PGABettingOdds.com’s 2013 PGA Tour Player Of The Year: Phil Mickelson

Phil MickelsonWe’re a little bit late on the Player Of The Year voting on the PGA Tour, and are aware that Tiger Woods was named the winner. It’s hard to argue with that, as Woods won five times on the season, including the PLAYERS Championship and two World Golf Championship events.

But we want to argue the case for another player. That would be Phil Mickelson, who very surprisingly has never won the Player of the Year on the PGA Tour before. That’s thanks in large part to the man who won it against in 2013. Continue reading

2013 Presidents Cup Preview; United States Picked To Win

2013 Presidents CupThe 10th Presidents Cup gets underway on Thursday, as the best players from the United States take on the best International players that excludes Europe. No, it’s not a boycott against Europe, the U.S. and Europe have their own biennial¬†event that you might have heard of called the Ryder Cup.

But the Presidents Cup and Ryder Cup take on very similar format, as team play is at the heart of the competition before getting going with singles matches on the final day. Continue reading

A Look Back At the 2013 PGA Tour Season

Henrik StensonThe 2013 PGA Tour season is in the books, capped off by the FedEx Cup championship won by Henrik Stenson, thanks to a win the Tour Championship. It was a great season for golf, which saw many of the game’s best rise to the occasion.

Let’s take a look at some of the highlights of the Season. Continue reading