Consider this the end of an era. For the first time since 1992, neither Tiger Woods nor Phil Mickelson will have a winner on the PGA Tour.
Mickelson made that a certainty on Saturday morning when he withdrew from the BMW Championship, ensuring he would miss next week’s season and playoff finale at the Tour Championship in Atlanta. It’ll be first time in the FedEx Cup that Mickelson failed to reach East Lake.
It’s been an odd season for both players, with Woods sidelined much of the season by a back injury that required microdiscectomy surgery on March 31, forcing him to miss the first two majors of the year. Woods then returned for political reasons at the Quicken Loans National, which benefits his foundation, and missed the cut. He made the weekend at the Open Championship, but was never a factor after Round 1. Woods then withdrew from the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational in the final round after a back injury flare-up when he hit an awkward shot on the second hole at Firestone C.C. The 14-time major winner made a last-ditch effort to play the PGA Championship the following week but missed the cut.
Woods season in summary: Seven events, two withdrawals, two missed cuts, one top-25 finish.
Mickelson played 20 times this year with better results than Woods, but his worst season since 2003. Lefty posted 10 top-25 finishes, though only one of those ended in a medal-stand finish with a runner-up effort at the PGA Championship. A couple of strokes’ difference at Valhalla could have made for a season-saving week, but instead left Mickelson in precarious position for the FedEx Cup playoffs.
Over the course of their overlapping pro careers, Woods and Mickelson have both posted a PGA Tour win in 14 seasons.