Phil Mickelson admits to repeated Augusta National theft in story you won’t believe
@PhilMickelson on X
Following repeated controversies over the past two years, Phil Mickelson has ended up on the bad side of many people and organizations in the world of golf. Now we might have to add Augusta National Golf Club to the list.
The reason? A video surfaced on social media Thursday night making serious allegations against the three-time Masters champion involving repeated theft at the storied club in Georgia.
And there’s a good chance the allegations are true, because the man who made the claims is none other than Phil Mickelson himself.
Late Thursday night, Mickelson dropped a video of himself on X (formerly known as Twitter) sitting in a golf cart and spilling the details on his crime.
Mickelson begins by explaining that back in 2004 he and Dave Pelz started working on a towel drill in which they would lay towels down on a range from specific distances up to 175 yards and hit to them.
The drill seemed to turn Phil’s game around, leading to multiple wins including his first major title at the 2004 Masters, where he practiced the drill daily.
But when Mickelson showed up in 2005, as he claims in the video, a new sign had appeared on Augusta’s East driving range, his preferred spot to practice the drill, that read: “EAST PRACTICE TEE FOR SHORT GAME PRACTICE ONLY.”
This presented a problem for Phil, who would no longer be able to perform the drill he depended on for his title defense. That is, until he came up with an innovative solution: steal the sign.
“After the Champions Dinner, I let all the champions leave first, and I go down Magnolia Lane and I park the car, and I kind of crawl under the magnolias, and I take that sign and I wiggle and I wiggle and I lift and I yank it out and I throw it in the back of my SUV and off I go,” Phil reveals in the video. “So I show up the next morning and there’s no sign there, I start hitting my shots, I do my towel drill and I do it all week long.”
But when Mickelson returned in 2006 for another Masters start, the sign had reappeared. Not to be dissuaded, Phil reenacted his theft from the previous year, and once again stole the offending range sign. This time, though, the plan didn’t work.
“I show up the next day and I’m going to go do my towel drill and there’s another sign there,” Phil explained. “It never dawned on me there are cameras everywhere and there’s some video of me crawling under these magnolias with the guys saying, ‘Look at this idiot, what’s he doing?'”
The story sounds far-fetched, especially considering Augusta National’s reputation for being very strict about rules and regulations during Masters week, for both fans and players.
But Mickelson provided some proof. At the very end of the video, Phil pulls out the very sign he stole from Augusta and displays it for the camera along with one line: “It’s a true story.”
Check it out for yourself below.
Fortunately for Phil, he wasn’t banned from the club (at least not yet), and being denied his preferred drill didn’t seem to affect him in 2006 either, as he went on to capture his second Masters title and third career major that week.