"Who cares?" Phil Mickelson "at peace" with uncertain Ryder Cup, PGA Tour future

Phil Mickelson says he's "at peace" if he never players on the PGA Tour again or gets the chance to become the U.S. Ryder Cup captain.

Ben Smith's picture
Mon, 30 Jan 2023
"Who cares?" Phil Mickelson "at peace" with uncertain Ryder Cup, PGA Tour future

Phil Mickelson says he's "at peace" if he never plays on the PGA Tour again or gets the opportunity to be involved in the Ryder Cup.

Mickelson has given an exclusive interview to SI's Bob Harig, where he has approached a number of difficult topics. 

The six-time-major champion is scheduled to kick off his 2023 at the Saudi International ahead of the second season of the LIV Golf League

Related: Mickelson's latest social media activity is wild

Mickelson told Harig he has dropped 20lbs and is back down to his college weight. He said he is ready to put last year behind him.

He told the publication he believes he can replicate Sam Snead by winning tournaments well into the twilight of his career. 

Elsewhere, Mickelson, 52, expressed the confidence that he can win another major before he hangs it up. 

Some of his claims included: 

  • He wasn't contractually obligated to play in the Saudi International, as other LIV players are
  • Mickelson said he "hasn't dwelled" on the firestorm of 2022
  • Mickelson said he's had many players personally thank him for creating a huge change within the PGA Tour
  • No player has said anything negative to his face
  • He is looking forward to returning to Augusta National 
  • He believes there may well be some awkwardness at the Masters Champions Dinner, but it won't be coming from him 
  • Mickelson believes there will probably be another world ranking system put in place as the current one "isn't credible" 
  • He will look back at this period of his life as "short-term disruption" for a "long-term gain" 
  • Mickelson believes he will have the opportunity to play on the PGA Tour again (hinting at LIV being successful in their litigation). 
  • That being said, Mickelson doesn't care if he wins again on the North American circuit because it won't change how he views his career
  • One more major is the top priority

"I don't know if anybody is going to really come up to me and lay into me. The only people who have said anything are those who have been supportive and kind." - Phil Mickelson

What did Mickelson say about not playing in the Ryder Cup again? 

"I'm totally comfortable. … I've loved being part of the Ryder Cup as a player 12 times and as a vice captain once. I've had more great experiences than probably anybody.
"If I'm not a part of it, I'm at peace with that as well. And I'm proud of the role I've played in that. And the role in creating change and integrating player input and involvement.
"Having more continuity from year to year. I like seeing us play our best golf in the Ryder Cup, even if I'm not ever part of it again."

Related: Mickelson on OWGR future

What did Mickelson say about not playing a PGA Tour event ever again? 

"If I were never to play another PGA Tour event, I'm totally at peace with it. But I believe by next year I'll have the opportunity if I want [due to the pending litigation].
"I don't know if I'll have the time. I'm playing 19 events and don’t know how much more. I'd actually rather scale down the number of tournaments, because I'm also in the four majors. That's a lot of golf.
"But I'm motivated and excited to get started. All of these things create new energy. Having teammates to push each other. I'm motivated, but I don't see the benefit to playing more.
"The tournaments where you are going to leave a mark are the majors. That creates a life memory. If I win another Tour event, who cares?
"It's not like it's going to do anything for how I look at my career. Another major would be a unique, special moment. That's really where I want to thrive.
"And sure, it would mean a lot to win some LIV events because of the role I've played as it's been created."

Next page: Nine players who changed their mind about LIV Golf