This age-defying stat puts Phil Mickelson’s career into perspective

March 8, 2019

Phil Mickelson‘s career is borderline astonishing at this point. He plays golf like he doesn’t know that age is supposed to have a detrimental effect on his game: He’s won six PGA Tour events including the 2013 Open Championship since turning 40.

But 2019 is proving impressive, even by Phil’s own standards.

Just months ago Phil Mickelson’s career was showing signs of decline. He had his statistically worst driving year of his career in 2018, finishing 57th in Driving Distance and 189th in Driving Accuracy en route to a 154th ranking in SG: Driving. It was all a product of his swing speed that had dipped to 116 mph.

But Phil got to work this offseason, focusing on upping his swing speed.

“It’s been a lot of work,” he said. “It’s been a long process.”

The early returns are looking good. They look so good, in fact, that Phil Mickelson’s career is starting to look age-defying. During Thursday’s broadcast at the Arnold Palmer Invitational, Golf Channel shared this chart, comparing Phil Mickelson’s career swing speed to other late-career players. While everybody’s else’s swing speed decreases as their career goes on, Phil Mickelson’s swing speed is actually increasing.

Phil Mickelson's career swing speed keeps getting better

It’ll be interesting to see if this upward trend holds as the season picks up. Phil could be benefiting from a small sample size early in the season. But still, the results thus far speak for themselves.