LA QUINTA, Calif. – Phil Mickelson did something he had never done in 2,200 previous rounds on the PGA Tour. He made 18 consecutive pars in the second round of the American Express.
Eighteen pars for golf’s wild thing? Think about how many U.S. Opens he would’ve won if he’d ever done that in a USGA event. But golf in a dome as defending champion Andrew Landry describes it, isn’t about making pars; it’s supposed to be a birdie-fest.
When informed that he’d achieved a first for him, Mickelson responded as only Mickelson can: “Which is surprising,” he said, “because I really try to hit fairways and center of the greens and just make easy pars and for that to be the first time it’s really shocking.”
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Mickelson, a two-time champion of the American Express and tournament host, opened with a 2-over 74 on Thursday at the easier Nicklaus Tournament Course at PGA West, to put himself in a position where he was going to need to make birdies in bunches to make the 36-hole cut, which fell at 4-under 140. Mickelson, who missed the cut for the fifth time in 18 starts in this event, didn’t manage to make a…