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« "According to Williams" ** | Main | Haney Eliminates At Least Three Of Barkley's Backswing Belches »

Stevie On Phil: "I hate the prick"

Murray Hills buries the lede reports that Stevie Williams' rebranding effort (from Tiger Woods' lowly luggage looping lunatic to nature-loving porter for Tiger) may take a hit after being asked about Phil Mickelson.

It's also a well-known fact that Woods and American Phil "Mr Nice Guy" Mickelson are not the best of buddies. Williams told a story of Woods and Mickelson paired together during the US Open. The pair were duelling for the lead in the third round. Tiger waved to a packed grandstand seating 5000 people that bordered the 17th fairway. The crowd responded.

As a hush fell back over the crowd, a fan yelled out "Phil." No response from Mickelson. Again the fan yelled out "Phil." Again no response. The fan changed tack. "Hey, Mr Mickelson."

When Mickelson turned and waved, the fan yelled out "Nice tits." The crowd erupted in laughter; Mickelson went double bogey, bogey and his tournament was over.

And Williams on Mickelson?

"I wouldn't call Mickelson a great player ... 'cause I hate the prick."

And thanks Stevie for the wonderful timing: on the eve of Tiger's annual press conference at Sherwood. Maybe it won't be just a bunch of questions about the knee after all! And who says you are not media friendly?

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Reader Comments (16)

If Stevie is doing all these interviews and stuff, he must be looking for a job. Remember what happened when Fluff started doing commercials and stuff?
12.12.2008 | Unregistered CommenterSteven T.
I think Stevie has more job security than Fluff.

This puts Tiger in a tough spot, although the media won't take him to task at all if he never addresses it.

I know everyone hates Phil, but Williams is classless.
12.12.2008 | Unregistered CommenterTighthead
Well I don't think everyone hates Phil. He is a bit soft in the physique department. As far as sinking Steve...his record for wins is beyond compare...but how many wins does he have outside the best players of there era?
A few to be sure, though that massive total is mainly with three or so players. One always has to factor in those caddie lads with multiple wins with numerous players to ascertain who really is king of the pro loppers!
12.13.2008 | Unregistered CommenterSir Real
Maybe Phil deserves it, maybe he doesn't. Maybe Williams was half kidding or his statement is somewhat out of context, maybe not. Regardless, calling him a prick in the media is both stupid and tasteless.

Rivalries are only great for the game if they are friendly, and in the spirit of good sportsmanship.
12.13.2008 | Unregistered Commenterjohncommoner
See above. Stupid, tasteless, classless say it all.
12.13.2008 | Unregistered CommenterPapa Bing
Picture it: Sawgrass, 2006.

A lonely corner of the range, hidden from the galleries, is being used by a few professionals who really want to get some work done - or, in Sergio Garcia's case, are hiding from the pack of co-eds who had been screaming his name everywhere he went. (Not the back deck, for those of you who know the range - the piece blocked by the range tent.)

A few feet away from Sergio, a haggard looking Rocco Mediate is grimacing after every swing. I can't remember specifically which injury this was, but I think this was shortly after he came back from the big mess with his back. I could hear the clank his irons were making as he was hitting short iron after short iron thin. That said, he was trying - you could tell he was just struggling to make a cut, and whatever work he was trying to do, it just would not come together.

Phil walks by, stops next to him, and talks for the next twenty minutes straight about hedge funds...uninterrupted by any sort of noise that could be construed as interest on Rocco's part. Poor Rocco is completely and utterly deserving of his title as one of the nicest guys on tour - because instead of telling Phil to hit the bricks, he continues to try to work. Finally, as Phil's winding down, Rocco tries something different in his swing and flat shanks one.

Phil's response: "Geez, Roc, you gotta spend some more time out here."

Stevie was tasteless, classless and ignorant when he said what he said. From what I saw over four days, he also told the truth.

Or, as Sergio put it (and one of the nice guys from the Navy translated for me): "Fuckin' idiot."
12.13.2008 | Unregistered CommenterReverendTMac
This story is quite the head-scratcher. Geoff's blurb says it was the third round of the US Open but doesn't say the year. The actual linked article says that it was this year at Torrey but doesn't mention the round. Tiger and Phil only played the first two rounds together. It also says the heckling happened on the 17th hole. Mickelson did not go double-bogey, bogey once during the tournament. He did make a nine on 13 Saturday, but Woods was playing with Karlsson that day.

Are Donegan and his editors too lazy to spend 30 seconds on Google to fact check the details of such an inflammatory story? This is like the first 50 pages of Johnny Miller's book!
12.13.2008 | Unregistered CommenterNRH
Here we go again. Someone speaks an honest opinion, and gets blasted for being classless. Would you guys be happier if he'd said, "Phil's a wonderful person and a credit to the game"?

Considering all the shit people get when they say what they really think, it's a miracle anybody says anything on the record that's worth reading.
12.13.2008 | Unregistered Commenterjneu
The story seems a little hinky. Phil is normally pretty fan friendly, be it phony or not. Tiger and Stevie do their best to ignore the gallery, and Stevie is quick to take action with an out of line spectator. Here he seems to be implying that Tiger is the warm one, and Phil is aloof with the gallery. The story just seems off to me.

Jneu, I get what you are saying, but I think it is classless for Williams to embarass his employer in this way.

Will this be as big a deal as Phil talking crap about Tiger's equipment?
12.13.2008 | Unregistered CommenterZeb
Once again William's is an embarassment. I am a New Zealander and I have not time for the man. The reverence he gets in NZ borders on the pathetic. As if he is the key ingredient in Tigers success.

No style, no grace, just a pain inthe arse.
12.13.2008 | Unregistered CommenterStephen
I take it the silly season has arrived. Ugh
12.13.2008 | Unregistered Commentercrosby's pipe
I said it more than a year ago, here on this blog: Williams is a sociopath.

I let this story sink in for about 24 hours, to first gauge whether it would get any traction. Silly me. Tiger+Phil+Stevie+"prick" = Media Goldmine. Rod Blagojevich (that's ROD BLAGOJEVICH, Governor of Illinois) just called me to tell me it's a "f---ing goldmine."

All that is left, now, is to establish the over/under on which hole, of Tiger's first practice round of his first return event, will some erstwhile golf enthusiast call out from beyond the galleyr ropes to Tiger to ask him whether he knew what sort of "prick" he had as a caddy. Thereby insuring a downward spiral of fan behavior for another year.

Thank you, Stevie. For being the gift to golf that you have always been.
12.13.2008 | Unregistered CommenterChuck
I believe thet Steve would not have said this without Tiger's tacit approval. Just checking: no one here thinks Steve is wrong about Phil do thay?
12.13.2008 | Unregistered CommenterPonte Green
"Maybe it won't be just a bunch of questions about the knee after all!"

I wouldn't count on it from the golf media. They don't dare risk angering Oba-, er, Tiger.
12.13.2008 | Unregistered CommenterScott
re NRH

nowhere in my piece do i say that the "joke" was made during the third round. because (surprise!) i was at torrey pines and remembered they didn't play together in the third round.

the "mistake" was made by murray hills, who wrote the original story in NZ.

being a lazy journalist, I then spend the best part of four hours trying to track down Mr Hills in NZ. when i finally found him he confirmed that yes indeed Williams had told the "joke" (and called mickelson various names, as well)..

we then reached the conclusion that williams must have been talking about the second round.

subsequently, after the story appeared, I managed to speak to someone in a position to know who informed me that incident "joked" about actually never took place. in short, williams made it up.

read my story again and you will see the phrase "according to williams"

I specifically used that phrase because I was slightly suspicion of the story's veracity (it has been aimed at monty through the years). however, if williams says it in public forum in front of 250 people I think it is fair to use it with the qualification "according to"

As for your general criticism about "lazy journalism" - it is lazy in itself, lacking any serious thought or indeed originality. whenever i came across it on websites i always conclude that person throwing it around is - to use the word of the day - a prick.


12.13.2008 | Unregistered Commenterlawrence donegan
Stevie may think Phil's a prick, and maybe he's right. Still, I'm of the opinion that if I walked up to Phil on the street, he'd give me the time of day. I don't get the same feeling from Tiger.

True story, in the early 1990s (1992 maybe?) I played a corporate event at Riviera as a guest of someone who invited my dad and me to play. It was three weeks before Tiger's first LA Open, and he was playing a practice round that day as a guest of the tournament sponsors. At the buffet dinner, there were empty seats next to me and my dad, and Tiger and his dad took those seats. Everyone in LA golf knew who he was, and I tried to engage him in small talk. He was (I think) a junior in high school, and he was kind of a jerk to me back then (I was a freshman in college). I realize he was a kid, and that was a long time ago, but you could just tell something about his personality.

Now, I'm a big Tiger fan. I have absolutely nothing against him personally. I love watching him play. But phony or not, I get the impression that Phil would be a much nicer guy in person than Tiger.
12.13.2008 | Unregistered CommenterSeitz

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