This superstar trio is easily the most exciting thing in the opening rounds at the Olympic Club in San Francisco.
And, of all three players involved, Tiger is the least likely to be fazed by the pressure of performing.
Woods has plenty to worry about on his own without bothering himself over who he's playing with. If anything, the prospect of playing with two of the better players should calm him down some.
This course is long, narrow and offers little margin for error. Tiger can deal with that better than anyone else and when he reaches the final three holes (three very birdie-friendly holes), he should be able to pick up some ground, or possibly even distance himself.
Forget about his win at the Memorial two weeks ago. Forget that he won the tournament prior to the Masters where he ultimately finished 40th. The U.S. Open at the Olympic Club is something entirely different, a course foreign to most everyone on tour.
The last time this course hosted the U.S. Open was in 1998, when Lee Janzen won with a score of even par.
Tiger finished tied for 18th that year and Mickelson finished tied for 10th—Bubba was 19 years old at the time and not playing professionally.
With so much at stake, and so little familiarity with the course, Tiger is one of the few who could certainly charge like no other.
He's currently the betting line favorite at 13-2, according to Bovada, and he's actually a good bet to win this entire thing.
Don't be surprised if he's the one that emerges from this early trio with the best score of the three scores.