News & ToursFebruary 3, 2015

Phil Mickelson abandons claw putting grip . . . for now

Phil Mickelson has gone back-and-forth on the claw grip before, and he has again going into the Farmers Insurance Open.


Mickelson opened 2015 putting inside 10 feet with the claw, but after two tournaments he's going back to his conventional grip. Asked on Monday if he was sticking with the claw, Mickelson texted back a one-word response: "No." The idea of going claw was sold to him by short-game coach Dave Pelz during off-season work on the greens at Mickelson's home in Southern California. Statistically, Pelz showed Mickelson how he was better inside 10 feet with the claw. His results in the Humana Challenge and the Waste Management Phoenix Open proved otherwise. From inside 10 feet, Mickelson ranks 146th on tour. Inside 5 feet, he is ranked 120th. With gloves on both hands, he lipped out a 3-footer for one of his six bogeys in a Friday round of 76 that contributed to a missed cut. None of this should raise a red flag. Mickelson gave an indication after leading the field in birdies at the Humana,  "I'll switch back and forth probably throughout the year."

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