No Mulligans for Mickelson

Mulligan — a “do over” in golf.

Today’s story is about British Open winner Phil Mickelson.

Phil Mickelson just won the British Open. Some say it’s his most important win to date. But as a father, “Lefty” might disagree.

Reflect back 14 years…

It was the morning of June 17, 1999. Mickelson teed off in his first U.S. Open. If that’s not pressure enough…

His wife, Amy, back home in Arizona, was ready to deliver their first child. They had a deal — Amy would page Phil if she went into labor. He would walk off the course and fly home. Phil understood there would be other tournaments, but there would be no do over, no mulligan on the birth of their child.

Phil Mickelson

Phil Mickelson

On the last day of the tournament, on the 18th green, Payne Stewart drained a fifteen footer for par, beating Mickelson by one stroke. In a memorable moment, Stewart promptly walked over to Mickelson, grabbed him by the cheeks and said, “You’re going to love being a father.”

Phil’s wife did go into labor during the Open, but she didn’t alert the soon to be dad! Fortunately, it was a slow labor, and Phil made it back in time.

His daughter, Amanda, was born the next day.

This year, father Mickelson nearly missed his tee-time at the U.S. Open. He was flying cross-country after watching his daughter’s 8th grade graduation and commencement speech back home in San Diego.

“I told her I want to be there,” he said. “I don’t want to miss that. I don’t want to miss her speech. I don’t want to miss her graduation.”

Today we salute Phil Mickelson — a man who clearly understands that there are no mulligans, no do overs, no second chances on those special moments with our kids.

“Phil Mickelson puts daughter first,” by Hank Gola, Daily News, June 14, 2013 (

“Family still comes first to Phil Mickelson,” by Bill Dwyre, Los Angeles Times, June 13, 2013.

“Lateral Hazard: Phil Mickelson’s legacy grows with stunning British Open victory,” by Brian Murphy, Yahoo! Sports, July 22, 2013. (–lateral-hazard–phil-mickelson-s-legacy-grows-with-british-open-victory-030723530.html)

“Mickelson Proves Father Knows Best,” by Gene Wojciechowski ,, June 14, 2013.

Your Comments

  1. Jeannie

    Phil Mickelson is nothing but a class act. Not only is he a great golfer, but he is a perfect example of a wonderful father and husband. Some others should take note.

  2. David

    For most, golf and being a committed father are incompatible. There is always an exception to the rule. Congrats to Phil Mickelson on his victories on and off the golf course.


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