Phoenix Open 2013: Why Phil Mickelson Will Continue Dominant Run in Arizona

Pete Schauer@@Pete_SchauerCorrespondent IFebruary 1, 2013

SCOTTSDALE, AZ - JANUARY 31: Phil Mickelson reacts after missing his birdie putt on the ninth hole that would have given him a round of 59 during the first round of the Waste Management Phoenix Open at TPC Scottsdale on January 31, 2013 in Scottsdale, Arizona. (Photo by Hunter Martin/Getty Images)
Hunter Martin/Getty Images

After a dominant opening round at the Waste Management Phoenix Open that saw Phil Mickelson shoot a 60 and just miss out on making history, Mickelson sits atop the leaderboard at -11.

After the hot start, is it possible the 42-year-old will relinquish the lead?

While it's always a possibility, I don't see it happening.

If you had the opportunity to watch Mickelson run through the first 18 holes on Thursday like Adrian Peterson runs through opposing defenses, I think you'll agree that Mickelson looks like he won't be stopped.

Mickelson birdied 11 holes in the first round, including four consecutive to start the back nine, highlighted by a beautiful 164-yard approach shot on the 13th hole to make birdie on a par five.

Just watch lefty place this ball on the green on the par-three seventh hole:

You could tell it was just one of those days the lefty was feeling it, as he birdied three of the first four holes and made it look like he was playing at a pitch and putt course.

After watching him run up and down the TPC Scottsdale in the first round, it's hard to argue that Mickelson shouldn't be the favorite to win the tournament.

It's not just about looking at his scorecard and seeing all of the green squares around each hole.

It's about his perfect tee shots landing in the fairway, his approach shots being put within a few feet from the hole and his poise from the first hole all the way to 18.

I don't know if it's because it's a homecoming for Mickelson (he was born and raised in Scottsdale, Az.) or if he's just poised for a breakthrough season, but he looks locked in.

While players like Robert Garrigus, Angel Cabrera and Ryan Moore also find themselves near the top of the leaderboard, no one is playing better in Arizona right now than Mickelson.

Following a dominant performance on Thursday, look for Mickelson to carry that effort through the weekend and into a title at the Phoenix Open.