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HomeSportBrooks Koepka: ‘Everybody’ but Phil Mickelson happy with PGA Tour

Brooks Koepka: ‘Everybody’ but Phil Mickelson happy with PGA Tour

As the golf world sorts through the wreckage caused by Phil Mickelson’s comments on the Saudi Golf League, Brooks Koepka doesn’t think the PGA Tour is out of the woods just yet.

“I think it’s going to still keep going,” Koepka told reporters at the Honda Classic of the league, which is funded by the Saudi regime. “I think there will still be talk. I think … everyone talks about money. They’ve got enough of it. I don’t see it backing down; they can just double up and they’ll figure it out. They’ll get their guys. Somebody will sell out and go to it.”

Koepka believes Mickelson is on an island when it comes to his issues with the tour.

“I’m happy with the PGA Tour,” Koepka said, according to Sports Illustrated. “I think everybody out here is happy. [Mickelson] can think whatever he wants to think, man. He can do whatever he wants to do. I think everybody out here is happy. I think a lot of people out here have the same opinion.”

Bryson DeChambeau and Dustin Johnson both announced they would remain on the PGA Tour earlier this week, leading Rory McIlroy to declare the Saudi proposal “dead in the water.” McIlroy also called Mickelson’s comments to Alan Shipnuck “naive, selfish, egotistical, ignorant.”

Phil Mickelson comments
Brooks Koepka (l.) and Phil Mickelson (r.)

Mickelson has come under fire for saying he got involved with the Saudi Golf League despite the government’s atrocious human rights record as a way of putting pressure on the PGA Tour. He’s since lost two sponsors, KPMG and Amstel Light, and has given other sponsors the opportunity to pause relationships with him.

“They’re scary motherf–kers to get involved with,” he told Shipnuck of the regime. “We know they killed [Washington Post reporter and US resident Jamal] Khashoggi and have a horrible record on human rights. They execute people over there for being gay. Knowing all of this, why would I even consider it? Because this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to reshape how the PGA Tour operates. They’ve been able to get by with manipulative, coercive, strong-arm tactics because we, as players, had no recourse. As nice a guy as [PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan] comes across as, unless you have leverage, he won’t do what’s right. And the Saudi money has finally given us that leverage. I’m not sure I even want [the SGL] to succeed, but just the idea of it is allowing us to get things done with the [PGA] Tour.”

In a long-winded statement on Tuesday, Mickelson apologized for the comments, but claimed they were off the record and praised LIV Golf Investments, the Saudi-backed fund behind the league. Shipnuck said on Twitter that it’s “completely false” that their conversation was off the record.

Phil Mickelson comments
Phil Mickelson has lost sponsorship deals with KPMG and Amstel Light.

Mickelson indicated he would be taking a break from golf. His last Tour event was last month’s Farmers Insurance Open, though he played at the Asian Tour’s Saudi International more recently. It’s not clear as of now whether he’ll face a suspension from the PGA.

“The past 10 years I have felt the pressure and stress slowly affecting me at a deeper level,” Mickelson wrote. “I know I have not been my best and desperately need some time away to prioritize the ones I love most and work on being the man I want to be.”

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