PGA Tour Notebook: Mickelson to take new weapon to Congressional

phil mickelson
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Phil Mickelson has tweaked a six-year-old 2-iron with the goal of using it at Congressional during the U.S. Open.
Doug Ferguson
Associated Press


Published: Sunday, June 05, 2011 | 7:19 p.m.

Phil Mickelson is working on a new 2-iron to take to the U.S. Open at Congressional in two weeks.

It’s really not new -- he’s had it for about six years. But he thinks he has it just about right.

“It hadn’t quite worked right until I bent it, tweaked it a little bit. Now it feels pretty dialed in,” Mickelson said. “I’ve been experimenting the last few weeks trying to get the right 2-iron that flies about 255 or so off the tee, which is kind of what I’m gunning for. I think this one is dialed in just right.”

In a slight change, Mickelson has decided not to play the St. Jude Classic the week before the U.S. Open. Instead, he will go to Congressional next week to get in his practice.

CADDIE CHANGE: In what appears to be a game of musical chairs with caddies and players, the biggest change is Joe LaCava no longer on the bag for Fred Couples. Instead, LaCava is working for Dustin Johnson.

Couples had encouraged him to find another bag, mainly because Couples was on the less lucrative Champions Tour and not playing much this year because of a bad back. So when Johnson’s bag became open, LaCava took it.

“He’s been a great caddie. He’s caddied for a lot of great players,” Couples said.

Couples said it might be difficult early on for LaCava to get the right club for Johnson, mostly because Johnson is one of the longest hitters in golf. He also thinks LaCava will be good at knowing when to tell Johnson to scale back, and not hit driver.

“Other than that, I have a lot of respect for Joe,” Couples said. “I think he’s done a phenomenal job, and I hope he stays with him a while, because I’m not taking him back.”

They weren’t separated very long. Couples and Johnson played together the first two rounds.

GREEN JACKET AND BLACK TIE: Masters champions are allowed to take their green jacket home with them while they hold the title, and Charl Schwartzel is taking it with him wherever he goes.

“If you get to keep it only for a year and then leave it, you’ve got to pretty much enjoy it,” Schwartzel said. “No point leaving it if you’re only going to see it every two months.”

He brought it with him to the Memorial, even if just to look at it in the closet.

The last time he wore it in public was at Wentworth last week at the BMW PGA Championship, when the European Tour had an awards dinner and asked him to wear his prize.

One problem: It was a black-tie dinner.

“And I’m dressed up in a green jacket,” Schwartzel said. “Most people thought I was a waiter.”