Phil Mickelson Can't Close Out At The Majors And It Is Killing His Legacy

Phil Mickelson

For better or worse, Phil Mickelson’s career will always be measured against Tiger Woods. With yet another second-place finish at a major, it’s clear that Mickelson’s career will always be defined by what could have been.

Mickelson’s second-place finish at the U.S. Open was the sixth of his career, and it was his 19th top-3 finish at a major. And yet, only four of those top-3 finishes (21.1%) were wins.

For comparison, Woods has won 58.3% (14 of 24) of his top-3 finishes at a major.

If Mickelson could close out a major as well as Tiger and converted the same rate of top-3 finishes into wins, Mickelson would have won 11 majors by now instead of four.

Even if Mickelson converted top-3s into wins at the same rate as Jack Nicklaus (39.1%) or Arnold Palmer (36.8%), he would have seven majors.

Instead, Mickelson has four wins in a major, the same number as Ernie Els and Raymond Floyd. That is still very good company. But it is not the elite, and that is exactly what Mickelson’s career is.

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