Truth and Rumors: Do we know the real Phil Mickelson?

Truth and Rumors: Do we know the real Phil Mickelson?

Do we really know Phil?If you're unfamiliar with the style of Fox Sports columnist Jason Whitlock, he makes Glenn Beck look like Mr. Rogers. In his latest diatribe, Whitlock attacks the sports media — and in particular ESPN's Rick Reilly — for rushing to put Phil Mickelson on a pedestal in the wake of Lefty's stirring Masters win.

…All of us, including yours truly, need to be very careful about
casting Mickelson as good and Tiger as evil based on what little we
know about their marriages.
The level of disingenuous naivete
expressed in Reilly's post-Masters column was offensive. In a column
that was supposed to be a celebration of Phil and Amy's devotion,
Reilly took several vicious swipes at Tiger, including quite possibly
the most childish line ever published in a sports column:
"Mickelson, in case you forgot, is the guy who stayed true to his wife."

Whitlock continues…

…I'm going to assume that my sports-writing peers
know as little about Mickelson's personal life as we did about Tiger's
before Thanksgiving.
What we do know is that Mickelson, like Tiger, has/had an appetite for gambling and a friendship with Charles Barkley.

So Lefty must be sleeping with everything that moves, too, right? Listen, it's one thing
to stir the pot and quite another to be contrarian simply for the sake of standing out. Phil's wife has cancer, Phil's mom has cancer, Phil won the Masters. Hell, if we can't feel good about that story, what's the point in covering sports? TMZ misses Quail Hollow deadline Tiger Woods yesterday announced his next stop on his 2010 World Redemption Tour: the Quail Hollow Championship in Charlotte, N.C. Cue Harvey Levin and his merry band of muckrakers, right? Not so fast, according to a report in the Quad-City Times.

Ostensibly, the Charlotte tourney would be the first crack the
TMZ types could have at a heavily cloistered Woods, but Hougham
said that is not going to be the case.
"Our media credentialing was over on April 2, so at this point,
they're not going to get in," he said. "They're not going to get
credentials from us."
Hougham said he did hear Thursday from the CBS Evening News and
from a previously credentialed golf magazine seeking extra seats in
the media center.
"That's all OK," he said, "but if you're not a bona fide golf
publication or a golf writer, you're not going to get in."

Quail Hollow media director Lee Patterson said TMZ, the
scandal-driven Internet site and TV program, inquired about a
potential Woods appearance last month, but did not meet the
deadline to apply.

C'mon, Harvey, that's Journalism 101 — hit your deadlines! Then again, maybe TMZ and Co. have finally started to lose the love for Tigergate. Seems to me that TW's reemergence at Augusta National last week went a long way to quell the public's curiosity about him and his trysts. The tabs will never totally leave the man be and the jokes and air-heckling may never end, but I sense that we may have reached the tipping point. Tiger, the "scalded Calvinist" Finally, a tip of the visor to Wall Street Journal golf writer John Paul Newport, who in his Masters wrap penned this colorful description of Woods's demeanor in the aftermath of the tournament…

…With his retinue in tow like a funeral cortege, darkness descending, he marched slowly across to the putting green. His face said it all: it was stricken, wide-eyed, confused,
seemingly on the verge of panic. He looked more like a scalded
Calvinist than the Buddhist at peace he said he is trying to become. 

Or, for that matter, the disciplined Puritan we all thought he was.