Mickelson: Game still needs 'fine-tuning'


LA QUINTA, Calif. – Phil Mickelson hasn’t seriously contended at the Humana Challenge in nearly a decade, but on Sunday he didn’t seem the least bit concerned.

After shooting 15-under 273 (a total doomed by an opening 71), Mickelson said that he had accomplished his goal – to set a foundation for the season.

“We had great weather – that allows you to work on the fundamentals and get the swing basics down without having to fight the elements, without getting into bad habits,” he said.

“It was a good week to get the year started. Now we’ll see the next two weeks if I can get that fine-tuning done and shoot the low scores I need.”

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With the leaders still on the course, Mickelson will likely finish the tournament outside the top 20.That follows recent performances here in which he placed T-49 in 2012 and T-37 in ’13. He didn’t play here from 2008-2011.

This was Mickelson’s first PGA Tour start since he withdrew midway through the BMW Championship, and his first appearance since the Ryder Cup.

“I’m really excited for the upcoming year,” he said. “I feel like I’m ready to go, ready to get started. It was a good week this week, but some of the fine-tuning needs to get just a little bit sharper.”