Phil Mickelson has a “stock” driver and a “NASTY” driver, because of course


Phil Mickelson with a driver in his hands can mean so, so much.

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We’ve learned a lot over the years from Phil Mickelson with a pilot in hand, and this week is no different.

We have learned that sometimes two pilots are better than one. Phil did it at the 2006 Masters, which he won. We have learned that you can have a mini pilot and a normal pilot. Phil did this at the 2021 PGA Championship, which he won. He’s been fuming for years that nothing is more important than – say it with him – hitting bombs. Well, there’s a new Lefty-ism that we can add to the long and ever-growing list this week, thanks to Harry Higgs and the Fore Play podcast.

Higgs has become well known as an engaging storyteller on the PGA Tour, and he has lived up to it on the podcast. He detailed the infamous match where he teamed up with Keith Mitchell to face Mickelson and Joel Dahmen at Liberty National this year.

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Phil Mickelson says he needs to focus more on this as he gets older

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Playing with Phil, as Higgs notes, is quite an experience. You learn certain things just by keeping your ears engaged. Like when Phil asked his younger brother, Tim Mickelson, if he should hit a “stock” driver or if he should dive into his bag and take out the “bad” driver.

What is a “bad” driver? We can only really guess that the implication is something fierce.

“No one has ever said that on a golf course in a professional golf tournament in their life,” Higgs said. “But it’s just Phil. And Tim – Tim says, ‘The stock is good here, Phil. We can do this with a good stock.

“Phil says, ‘Okay, yeah’. He goes through his routine, balances and growls. It’s not Stock. He groaned audibly as he hit the golf ball. He’s one of the bad guys. And look, to Phil’s credit, he went nine miles, he flipped a long iron on the green, and he birdie. I will never, ever forget it.

I don’t think we will either. Mickelson later confirmed on Twitter what Higgs and we all thought: it was more than a stock change.

Is Mickelson totally serious with this caddy discussion? Only he would be able to answer this question. Mickelson has one of the longest swings on the PGA Tour – which means he can chase it when he really wants to – and over the years he has maintained his ball speed as he ages to keep up with the length of young players on the Tour. It’s actually quite impressive. His 2011 average ball speed: 175.37 mph. His ball speed in 2021: 175.22 mph.

Sean zak

Publisher of Golf.com

Editor-in-chief of GOLF.com, Zak joined the GOLF team three weeks after graduating from college. It is the brand’s utility infielder, covering digital, print and video. Its main task is to host various GOLF.com video properties and its award-winning podcasts. When the Masters arrives, be sure to tune in to hear him and his colleagues tell about the most memorable tournaments in Augusta National history on A Pod like no other.