Everyone knows Phil Mickelson. He’s the veteran on Tour that makes sure everyone know that he still has it, even if he hasn’t won a Major since 2013.
That Major win just happened to be The Open Championship, where he took home the Claret Jug by carding a 66 on Sunday. Along with the title, Mickelson won other pleasantries, like getting access to the champions section of the locker room and exemption into the event until age 60.
These perks can make anyone cocky, but Mickelson felt the need to poke fun at Jordan Spieth this year, regarding those perks that the 23-year-old didn’t have at the time.
According to the Telegraph, Lefty was preparing for a practice round when he interjected as Spieth headed to the locker room:
“The 47-year-old was in his normal playful demeanor, spotting Jordan Spieth walking into the wrong section of the locker room and telling his young countryman: ‘This right here is for past champions.'”
This small quip may have ignited a fire within Spieth, because he ended up taking the win after an exciting back and forth with Matt Kuchar. Mickelson on the other hand, didn’t even make the cut. Now these two will have to share a locker room at The Open in 2018, where Spieth will have full access this time around.
Mickelson credits his Open Championship win as his favorite win because the type of courses this Major is played on don’t lend themselves well to his type of game.
“The 2004 Masters will always be my most important, as it’s my first major, and winning the Masters, as an American, puts you in history,” Mickelson said. “But the greatest accomplishment in my career is winning the Open, because my game was never suited to that.
Jordan Spieth joins Jack Nicklaus as the only ones to ever have a third leg of the career Grand Slam accomplished before the age of 24. Will he consider this win his greatest accomplishment too? He definitely could, unless he wins the PGA Championship to complete the Grand Slam. That would be unbelievable.
The Best Pros Without A Major Win:
While he plays primarily on the European Tour, Lee Westwood, at age 43, is still the No. 52-ranked golfer in the world. He’s won 42 times around the world. With 76 majors under his belt and a top-20 finish at the Masters, Westy is the historically greatest player on this list. (Photo source/Wikimedia)
Seven times a winner on the PGA Tour, Matt Kuchar is the embodiment of cut-making steadiness and back-door top-10 finishes. It’s easy to forget, though, that with a bevy of major experience (45 starts), Kuchar has finished top 10 his four of the last six Masters. At 38, he looks poised to, at the very least, win a green jacket before his time on the PGA Tour is done. (Photo source/Wikimedia)
Paul Casey is one of those players you feel like won a major in the mid-2000s but actually didn’t. A pro for the last 17 years and a 16-time winner on Tour, Casey has nine top-10 finishes in 52 major starts. This includes three top-10s in the last five majors. In other words, he’s very close. (Photo source/Wikimedia)
There’s no doubt Patrick Reed has a competitive fire bar none and wants a major as badly as anyone on this list. Unfortunately, his ball flight, a sweeping draw, doesn’t work well at Augusta National, U.S. Open venues, or British Open venues. Simply, when Reed finds the right venue (likely at a PGA Championship), he could put the pedal down and run away with a major title. (Photo source/Twitter)
Rahm has burst onto the PGA Tour scene with a combination of power, touch, and confidence unseen since, perhaps, Tiger Woods in the late 90s. Already a winner on the PGA Tour, Rahm’s rocketing up the Official World Golf Rankings shows how this fearless player compares to his peers (quite favorably). Expect him to be among the top five in the OWGR in short order. (Photo source/Twitter)
Once deemed the most overrated golfer on Tour by his peers, Rickie Fowler has silenced critics with three wins in the last couple of seasons. And of course, he finished inside the top five at all four majors in 2014. That fact alone suggests Fowler is well-positioned to break through in a major. Certainly, his steely finish at the “fifth major” (The Players Championship) in 2015 suggests Fowler has the “extra gear” major winning requires. (Photo source/Twitter)