Made-for-TV pairings a hit with Mickelson

February 03, 2011

When the course thawed out sufficiently, the principals from San Diego were reunited in frigid Scottsdale and the heat was on again. Phil Mickelson was four under despite hitting it out of bounds right off the bat. Bill Haas tied for the lead with a 65 and the man of last week's moment, Bubba Watson, finished under par, too, with a 70.

"I did not play like I'd like Sunday last week," Haas said of his final round of 75 at Torrey Pines. "Maybe a little bit, I wanted to come out and prove that I can play in this kind of group -- at least better than I did on Sunday. I was pretty disappointed with that."

Mickelson loves the Tour's made-for-TV pairings and Haas, in particular, has caught his attention. "Bill sure played a heckuva round today," Mickelson said. "He's been playing like that the last month, in the playoff at the Hope, very close last week and he's right up there again this week."

Darkness finally halted the first round and the forecast was for a potential delay for frozen ground again Friday morning.

-- Jim Moriarty