A recent article published on golf.com reported about how Dr. Tom Bucholz left the gallery at the Shell Houston Open to caddy for Phil Mickelson on holes 14-16. In the past year, Dr. Bucholz has been treating both Phil's mother and wife for breast cancer. The Doc didn't do too bad either. Lefty went birdie-birdie-birdie on those three holes Dr. Tom was jocking for him. It can't go without saying that besides being a Professional Physician, Dr. Bucholz has also done time, on the tour that is. Roughly 25 years ago, the Doc was a caddy on the PGA tour.
This left me thinking. With all the criticism Mickelson has had to endure in the past, why is something so extraordinary looked beyond? I would need ten hands to count the stories I read of his alleged "cheating" simply by using a 20 year-old wedge. Mickelson was just exercising a loop-hole that was found in the PGA's rule book. I would not consider that cheating. If Phil provided a tank job while using that 20 year-old club then would you have all these other players coming out claiming that Lefty was in fact a cheater? I think not. I recall when I was a teenager caddying at Lakewood Country Club in Cleveland, OH, the member I was caddying blamed a poorly hit shot on his driver. I tried with every ounce of discipline I had not to respond with "Hey slappy, I doubt it was the club that made you shank that one into the woods.". The point here is, someone is always left to blame for other people's failures. I bet if Lefty played terribly with that ancient wedge, you would not see the hundreds of stories published about his alleged cheating.
What really gets me is the comparison he receives to Tiger. I love how when Tiger was viewed as a "family man" and "role model", Mickelson was viewed as a whiny, under-achieving player who trembled when Tiger stepped onto the tee. Now Tiger's infidelities have been surfaced and he is seen as a bigger sexual deviant than Ron Jeremy, but still is in the spotlight. Phillip on the other hand has been by his wife's side during her battle with cancer and even allowed her doctor to tote his sticks for three holes. Oh yeah, and did I mention he went birdie-birdie-birdie on those three holes?
Tiger was never the role model to begin with. Tiger threw clubs, bitched and moaned at the gallery, and wouldn't give the media the time of day all while sleeping around with porn stars and Perkins waitresses. Just because he drove the ball a mile and became the first billionaire athlete, America loved him. Phil on the other, has kept his mouth shut, his butt at the driving range, and his loyalty with this wife. If Phil's Doctor is as good at his day job as he is caddying, I would say I like Amy Mickelson's chances of beating cancer. And as for Lefty, I wish all the luck to you in the Masters but like the old saying says, Nice guys finish last.