A game-time decision last week because of a back injury, Phil Mickelson made it through all four rounds at the Phoenix Open without incident.
That would seem to be an encouraging sign – maybe Mickelson’s tweaked back was just a one-week injury, an indication that, at age 43, he simply needs to spend more time stretching.
Or perhaps not.
Mickelson’s back specialist, Tom Boers, told Global Golf Post for its Monday issue that the fact that Lefty remained upright in the Arizona desert “means absolutely nothing.”
“I’m worried about how his back will feel two weeks from now,” Boers said, according to the report. “There are no tricks to the healing trade. I restore function, and he needs to rest and let it heal. That’s a two-week process for Phil Mickelson and everybody else.”
Rest is coming, though perhaps not soon enough.
Mickelson is in the field for this week’s AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, where he will make his fourth start in a row to begin 2014. Throw in the fact that he traveled all the way to Abu Dhabi and then another 3,000-plus miles to Georgia to see Boers, and it’s been a taxing stretch for a player who still is managing his psoriatic arthritis.
After Pebble, Mickelson will shut it down for two weeks before playing two in a row on the Florida swing, beginning at the Honda Classic. For his part, he said after tying for 42nd Sunday that the “back feels great”
“There is a likelihood that he might tweak it again,” Boers told Global Golf Post. “Only then the injury will be compounded because the new injury will layer on top of the old one. If that happens, more drastic measures will be necessary to work this thing out.”
An ominous note, especially with Mickelson at the early stages of arguably his most important year ever.