Phil Mickelson got his game back in order with a rousing Pebble Beach victory.
Robert Beck / SI
By Alan Shipnuck
Thursday, March 08, 2007

HOT

1. Phil Mickelson
After a month of playing his way into shape, he was in complete control of his game -- physical and mental -- during a dominant win at Pebble Beach. He and Tiger Woods obviously have different ways of preparing, but the destination is the same. I can't wait to see them get it on at Augusta.

2. Karrie Webb
While Annika is busy building her brand and Lorena is off climbing mountains, Webb has already rung up two wins in '07, the latest at the ANZ Ladies Masters. Augusta is swell, but the major I'm really looking forward to is the Dinah Shore.

3. High def
The Golf Channel unveiled its HD for the first two rounds at Pebble and CBS kept it going on the weekend, a taste of what's to come in golf's new world order. With golf's vast scale and stunning scenery, no sport will look as good in high definition, and Pebble was the ideal place to prove it.

4. Into the Bear Pit
Possibly the lamest, bitchiest golf book ever written, in which Mark James spends a couple of hundred pages bashing the Yanks without ever taking responsibility for his pathetic strategy as captain -- the real reason Europe lost the '99 Ryder Cup. Of course, the book is relevant again only because of James's win last week on the senior tour, a reminder that this guy is a player, not a writer.

5. Tom Watson
It was a blast watching the 57-year-old legend tour his way around Pebble one final time as he guided his son Michael to a spirited run at the pro-am championship. They oughtta erect a statue of ol' Tom long and left of the 17th green.

NOT

1. Michelle Wie's wrists
Golf's brittle leading lady is on the shelf for at least a month after tweaking her left wrist in a jogging accident, just as her strained right wrist is healing. She must be weakening the ligaments by lifting her wallet.

2. Jim Furyk
He was well positioned for a weekend shootout with Mickelson but then got blown away in the Crosby weather. One tournament is not definitive, but now who looks like the second-best player in the world?

3. Grooves
The USGA has been so ineffectual slowing down the atomic ball it is now on the verge of waging jihad on your irons' grooves. Didn't the blue coats already lose this battle 20 years ago?

4. Danny Gans His Pebble schtick was so tiresome I was actually pining for Ray Romano. You know you're desperate when ...

5. L.A. Open Great course, great field, but the biggest story this week is who's not playing. Jack Vickers feels your pain.

Senior writer Alan Shipnuck has covered golf for Sports Illustrated since 1994 and frequently contributes to SI.com.

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