Woods and Mickelson, along with Rickie Fowler, begin their Thursday round at 1:52 p.m. ET. Thomas Pieters is the one I'm surprised about because he's down to number 54 in the world but I really like the way this kid plays.
Woods, now 42, has not won a tournament since 2013, but he's been competitive on the tour for the first time in years.
"I love it", said Mickelson on Sunday.
Matt Kuchar once told a story about how Mickelson would be dishing out his best material in the team room at the Ryder Cup, and if he ever didn't have a comeback, he would simply reveal how many majors he has won to shut up the room - but not without surveying his audience.
Mickelson couldn't keep up with Woods in the early 2000s, but emerged as one of his biggest rivals by winning the Masters in 2004, 2006 and 2010.
The trio has four Players Championship titles between them. "His mom and dad are fantastic, and just to have dinner with him to celebrate, that's very special when you're able to do that, and for him to share with mom and dad like that I think was probably even more special". That was one of the very few times, if not the first time, we played together the first two rounds. Following that campaign, Woods suffered a number of major injuries and underwent multiple back surgeries, keeping him from competing in all but a relative handful of events and prompting widespread speculation that he might never again contend for a tournament title. His final-round 74 was his first score over par in 12 weekend rounds this year.
Perhaps more than any other player, Mickelson can appreciate what Woods accomplished during his prime. I would never say Tiger isn't going to do anything, he's proven people wrong his whole career, but I think it's a lot more hard than it has been in the past. "You've got to give time to people and sometimes you don't get a lot of time to yourself", he stated. "And it goes to show you that they weren't there to witness it". I think that it was great to move it to May.
"Then, on top of that, when you guys all saw how I was chipping so poorly, my nerve and my back was not doing very good, and I was flinching a lot".