Phil Mickelson opened up to Parade Magazine about his difficult 2010 in a pre-Masters profile of the defending champion.
“It was an emotional high, and we had been through so many emotional lows over the previous 11 months,” Mickelson says. “It came at a perfect time.”
In fact, the lows had been devastating. A year earlier, in May of 2009, Amy, then 36, was told she had breast cancer. Less than two months later, Mickelson’s mom, Mary, got the same diagnosis. Mickelson returned to golf early on, but the family’s world had been turned upside down.
“A good friend of ours said the hardest thing to accept is that your old life is in the past and there’s a new normal,” Mickelson says. “When we looked at it that way, it was like a little bit of the pressure was off because it would have been almost impossible to get it back the way it was before.”
Amy and Mary now have good long-term prognoses, but last April’s collective sigh of relief didn’t last long. In June, just before the U.S. Open and six days before his 40th birthday, Mickelson woke up with excruciating pain in his right ankle, hips, and left index finger.
“It happened three days after I told Amy that my body had never felt this good—strong, loose, and limber,” he says. Mickelson played through the pain and stiffness for weeks (“If I stopped [moving] for 5 or 10 minutes, everything would lock up. And every morning I would just crawl out of bed, it hurt so bad”) before he got a definitive diagnosis: psoriatic arthritis, an immune disease that attacks the joints and has no cure.
Parade also talks to David Feherty, who explains why Mickelson and Augusta National is such a felicitous meeting of player and course:
“Phil is like the human equivalent of that golf course: You have to watch every single shot,” Feherty says. “You never know what’s going to happen.”
Sherrie Daly says pro golfers live like rock stars (groupies included)
In her new book "Teed Off," Sherrie Daly, Long John’s fourth ex-wife, takes readers on a tour of the wild side of professional golf. In an interview with The New York Post to promote her tell-all, Sherrie Daly says Tiger Woods wasn’t the only golfer misbehaving on the PGA Tour.
“It's not just Tiger. It’s John and others, believe me,” she tells The Post. “Professional golfers behave as dirty as any other professional athlete or rock star.”
Sherrie also reveals that the game is riddled with prostitution, drug use and overall misbehavior more generally associated with football and basketball.
“Golf sluts may dress in golf outfits, with those nerdy visors and argyle socks and sweater vests and pretend they’re interested in the game. But they’re just whores in preppy clothes,” she writes.
Justin Rose closes his eyes and starts making putts at Bay Hill
Stephanie Wei at WeiUnderPar.com found the secret to Justin Rose’s back-nine 31 at difficult Bay Hill on Sunday: he closed his eyes on putts under 10 feet.
Justin Rose fired a mighty impressive four-under 68 on Sunday at the Arnold Palmer Invitational. After posting a one-over on the front nine at Bay Hill, Rose got hot on the back and came in with a 31. He felt like he was rolling some great putts all week, but he wasn’t getting results. Until he made a change after the turn — he closed his eyes over putts inside ten feet.
“Nothing was going in the hole on the front nine, so he putted with his eyes shut on the back nine,” said Rose’s caddie Mark Fulcher.
I laughed and said, “Wait, I can’t tell if you’re kidding or not.”
“I’m serious,” said Fulcher. “It’s a drill we use during practice with the Zenio system. Nothing was going in on the front and the pins were quite difficult. There was nothing to lose.”
It worked out pretty well. Rose figured he wasn’t making anything, so why not give it a try? After all, he makes more than he misses during practice, anyway. On the first hole he tried it, the 10th, he drained an eight-footer for birdie.
“Mentally, it was a challenge to do that coming down the stretch when you’re trying to be that carefree, and just let it go,” said Rose. “The more I kind of got up the leaderboard, the more I was trying to use it as a real test and a drill, and it worked.”
Rose also rolled in a few longer putts, where he left his eyes open.
If you’re thinking of trying it yourself, Australian golfer Peter O’Malley has had some success with closing his eyes on putts from less than six feet. Golf Magazine Top 100 Teacher Jon Tattersall of the Terminus Club in Atlanta, Ga., says it could be the fix you need if you struggle on short ones.
“It takes a lot of trust in your stroke, but I like the concept,” Tattersall said. “If your stroke is good, but your eyes aren’t seeing a good result, then this might help.”
However, closing your eyes will only work if your distance control is excellent, Tattersall said.
“If you’re usually online, but always hit your putts three feet past the hole or short, then keep your eyes open but try looking at the hole when you hit the ball,” Tattersall said.
Rory McIlroy makes Time Magazine’s 140 best Twitter feeds list
Stewart Cink might have the most followers (1,207,293) and Tiger Woods is certainly more famous, but, according to Time Magazine, Rory McIlroy has the best Twitter feed in golf. (He’s actually tied for No. 8 on Time’s list with “Lord Voldermort,” although probably only PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem sees McIlroy as a villain.)
Sample Tweet: "A lot of abuse from @WestwoodLee about my top! Unjustified! He's dressed like a farmer at a beach party"
Tweet of the Day:
WestwoodLee: Raining cats n dawgs in Augusta! Noisy clouds not good for masters practice !