While Phil Mickelson was one of the major stories of the week heading into the U.S. Open, the weekend will be a different story.

Mickelson shot a three-over par round of 73 in his second round on Friday. While that was markedly better than his opening round 78, it was nowhere near good enough to make the cut. In fact, it was one of the worst majors of his career.

At the 2021 U.S. Open, Mickelson was coming off of an improbable win at the PGA Championship. While he wasn’t the favorite in the tournament, he was certainly the favorite of the galleries. But a lot has changed over the last year.

There was one obvious joke to make.

Indeed, Mickelson’s decision to join the Saudi-backed LIV Golf League has earned him a lot of criticism. And because of that, Lefty’s rough 36 holes at Brookline garnered essentially no sympathy.

Unless the governing bodies over the majors take some action against LIV League golfers, this is something that may persist for a while.

Some of the other LIV golfers may have obstacles in qualifying for majors, depending on how those events are factored into the World Golf Rankings. But as a past champion Mickelson has lifelong exemptions to both the Masters and PGA Championship. He’s qualified at the British Open through 2030, as all Open Champions 60 or younger are eligible. Meanwhile, his 2021 PGA Championship victory earned Mickelson a five-year exemption at the U.S. Open.

But while Mickelson may not be going anywhere in majors, the bad feelings against him aren’t going away any time soon, either. So, we can expect more of the same if he continues to struggle at future major championships.

[ESPN Stats & Info]

About Michael Dixon

Michael has a background in sports writing both online (Bleacher Report, Sportsnaut, Fantasy Baseball Crackerjacks) and in print (Sedona Red Rock News, Brentwood Press). Sports have been a lifeline passion for Michael and he continues to enjoy writing and talking about them.