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Pacific Palisades, CA (Dec. 19, 2017) – It’s a rare thing to watch Phil Mickelson play dull round on the PGA Tour. He makes “Did you see that?” birdies and “What the heck happened there?” bogeys, more of the later than the former of course, but both happen.

At the Genesis Open last week at Riviera Country Club, as is often the case, Phil Mickelson led field in prompting fans to wonder what Phil would do next. As usual, the answer was, “Gee, hadn’t thought of that.”

Early in the week the Phil and Amy Mickelson Foundation received a generous gift from the Los Angeles-based Don Levin Foundation to help the Mickelsons’ long-standing support of the PGA Tour’s Birdies for the Brave program, one he helped bring to fruition more than a decade ago.

“We’re thankful and humbled by the Levin Foundation’s generous gift,” said Phil, who pledged to continue “to develop initiatives that are consistent with our past efforts to improve the lives of those in need.

It was also announced that Phil Mickelson Design has volunteered its services to design a new practice facility for Phil’s alma mater, Arizona State University, in a public-private partnership to upgrade nearby Papago Park Golf Club.

“This is going to be the best practice facility in the nation,” said Mickelson, ASU ’92, and a three-time NCAA champion. “Our design goal is to provide the foundation for the collegiate player to improve in every area of his or her game.”

The third highlight of the week, for Phil anyway, was having daughter Amanda score a buzzer-beating three-point shot to send her high school team into the San Diego Section CIF basketball playoffs.

The water-logged Genesis Open was Phil’s sixth consecutive event, his longest run since opening the 2013 season with five straight. And that pre-season didn’t include weeks away from the game due to two sports hernia operations as was the case late in 2016. In the first and last rounds Phil dropped a total of nine shots on his closing nines and ultimately finished joint 34th. Huh?

Asked Sunday for his assessment of the week, Phil said, “It was OK. It’s encouraging in some areas, discouraging in others so I’ll have some things to build on and to work on in the coming weeks. I knew that in the first couple of weeks I wasn’t quite ready, but I expected a little more out of my game the last couple of weeks.

“The areas that I usually excel in, lag putting, basic chips, I’m throwing away a lot of shots that I shouldn’t be throwing away.  I’m doing the hard things well but the easy things I’m not doing so well, so I’ll have to work on that.”

Nobody saw that coming either, or should expect to see more of it.

PEBBLE BEACH, CA (Feb. 13, 2017) – Maybe it would have been easier to talk about if the nine-hole scores were reversed Sunday at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Ams. Maybe. No, probably not.

Phil Mickelson got through a tough round that was called after 16 holes Thursday at Monterey Peninsula Golf Club due to virtually day-long rain and sometimes stiff wind. The next morning he signed for a 70.

He caught some wet, windy weather again Friday afternoon at Spyglass Hill, and his even par 72 dropped him 30 places to 43rd. Saturday at Pebble Beach Phil had six birdies and a 69 moved him up 15 spots to 28th. Better, but still well back.

Sunday he was off in one of the first groups with his pal, Pat Perez, who years before had followed Phil from their native San Diego to Arizona State. There was no wind, the greens were as smooth as they were going to be all day, and Phil got going.

Birdies on the first two holes, a three-putt bogey on the third and two more birdies on 6 and 7 briefly had Phil in ninth place and he was 10th when he hit the 10th tee. That took a turn for the worse when he took a penalty stroke after his drive, and again when he bogeyed 13. The dream died when he lost two tee shots left on 15 and limped into 65th place with a 33-44— 77.

“I don’t know what to say about that back nine,” said the three-time winner of the event. “But I always look forward to playing the ATT and the same with the Genesis Open this week in Los Angeles,” where he’s had two wins and two seconds in his last seven visits.

This will be Phil’s first trip back to Riviera Country Club in three years because in that time the event coincided with his children’s winter break week.

“I’m going to rest up and be ready to focus for all 72 holes,” said Phil.

SCOTTSDALE, AZ (Feb. 5, 2017) – He was in 17th place, four shots off the lead after the first round of the Waste Management Phoenix Open, in 28th six back after two rounds, in 12th six back after three rounds and optimistic about his chances in the final after narrowly missing a birdie on 18.

“I’m far enough back that nobody’s really paying attention,” Phil Mickelson said Saturday. “If I can get off to a good start, three, four, five under on the front nine, that back nine has so much opportunity that I would love to play those final six holes with a chance because there are a lot of birdies and eagles out there.”

It didn’t quite work out that way.

Phil did make four birdies on the outward loop to draw within three of the lead.

“I played 63 holes really well,” said Phil afterward. “I was excited, going to the back nine and having an opportunity to win the tournament with a good back nine.”

But collectively the top 10 finishers were a modest 36 under on the back nine Sunday. And when Phil made the turn, opportunity turned to challenge for him, also.

He hit good drives on 10 and 11 and made bogey on both. A birdie on the reachable par-5 13th helped but he followed that with bogeys on the next two holes and after a double on 17, a final birdie was small solace. His par 71 score dropped him into a tie for 16th after Hideki Matsuyama defended his title in a four-hole playoff with Webb Simpson.

This week Phil moves to the Monterey Peninsula for his 20th consecutive playing of the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am, where he’s looking for his fifth victory after losing a playoff last season.

SAN DIEGO (JAN. 30, 2016) –He’s not out there trying to tie for 14th place as he did at the Farmers Insurance Open, but despite his brief off-season being disrupted by two surgeries, which virtually eliminated any serious preparation for the season to come, Phil Mickelson liked what he saw last week at Torrey Pines.

“I am really pleased with the way that I’m swinging the club and I feel really good,” Phil said after a Sunday 70.  “This is the best I’ve swung in a while, and I’m excited about these upcoming events and hopefully I’ll put it all together.”

Those upcoming events start this week with the Waste Management Phoenix Open, before the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am and Genesis Open at Riviera Country Club, events where he’s won a combined eight titles. Overall he’s won 19 of his 42 trophies in the first two months of the year on the West Coast swing.

“It’s always been really my favorite part of the season,” said Phil. “A lot of it has to do with me growing up around here, and even at 46, every time I come out here and look and walk the fairways here, I think about when I was with my dad from the outside looking in and how much it meant to me to ultimately play golf for a living and play inside the ropes.”

“Now I’ve competed here well over 25 times I would guess, 28, and it still feels fresh and new and exciting every time I get here, I just love it.  To have this kind of weather, too, is spectacular.  More than that, my game is starting to feel like it used to.”

He led the Farmers field with 20 birdies, five a day, and after nine bogeys in the first 36 holes he made only four on the weekend.

This week is a busy one for Phil. Half of Monday was filled with Callaway promotion shoots. The afternoon was scheduled for a long session with David Feherty, the product of which will serve as a two-part season-opener for the Irishman’s show on Golf Channel in early March. The Waste Management follows that. And Sunday’s Super Bowl always is must-see TV for Phil.

I hope to be 100 percent by next week, based on what I’m able to do in the gym,” he said. “Currently I’m probably 75, 80 percent of where I was before and it’s slowly coming back.  I’m now six weeks removed (from his second surgery), so I should be pretty much 100 percent here fairly quickly.”