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Lifelong friend of Phil Mickelson provides update on Lefty

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As golf continues to react to the news of Dustin Johnson’s participation at the first LIV golf event in London in a week’s time, many will enquire as to the whereabouts of previous ‘poster boy’ Phil Mickelson.

Lefty was, of course, the name that was to promote all that was good in the previous Saudi-backed golf league, but after his infamous comments regarding the regime and the benefits of leveraging against the PGA Tour in February, he has been in golf exile.

The six-time Major champion has been a regular on The Match since in inception, playing in the first four, before joining the analyst team for Brooks Koepka versus Bryson DeChambeau in November last year.

However, despite his affinity with the made-for-tv series, American producer and friend of Lefty, Bryan Zuriff confirmed we would not hear from Mickelson on the broadcast of the most recent match between four quarterbacks -Tom Brady, Josh Allen, Patrick Mahomes, and Aaron Rodgers.

Speaking on the Hot Mic podcast, Zuriff also spoke about the current welfare of the 51-year-old, a player that became the oldest major champion when winning the 2021 PGA Championship. And the news was very upbeat.

On the pod, host James Colgan asked if the fans would see Mickelson during the broadcast of the exhibition match, to which Zuriff replied,

“No. I swear to God, people think I’m making this up — Phil is enjoying his time off the hamster wheel. He’s enjoying it. He has gone balls to the walls for 30-plus years — doing every interview shaking every hand being an incredible ambassador.”

He added,

“He’s taking a break and he actually is enjoying it. So we will eventually see him, but he’s enjoying his time off. And he’s really happy about that. But I consider him a lifelong friend and a partner. And when he wants to come back, he’s welcome to come back.”

After hearing from only agents and those with ‘interest’ in the rebel league, this is a welcome essence of reality from one of Mickelson’s good friends.

As it is, we still don’t know when we will see him on the golf course again.

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6 Comments

6 Comments

  1. Thomas

    Jun 3, 2022 at 4:07 pm

    Phil has probably the signed more autographs for kids after his rounds than any golfer. The guy has done more for golf than the PGA ever has. My only beef is Phil should knock of the gambling. His last major at 51 years old was one of the most amazing golf achievements ever. Meanwhile, the PGA lauds serial adulterers.

  2. David W Howell

    Jun 3, 2022 at 3:41 pm

    Who Cares? Seasons. His is over. Self Inflicted.

  3. Joe Duffer

    Jun 3, 2022 at 11:53 am

    CLICK BAIT!!!

  4. Thomas Woodward

    Jun 2, 2022 at 10:01 pm

    If I was Phil, I’d be playing the course in Brookline for this years US Open as much as I could and get PREPARED to win this last slam event and then tell the tyrannical PGA Gestapo Agent Jay Monahan to suck my asshole…

  5. Bob

    Jun 2, 2022 at 7:31 pm

    When you have to say no, I swear to God, people think I’m making this up, you’re making it up.

  6. Rich

    Jun 2, 2022 at 2:31 pm

    Damage control. Not feeling it.

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19th Hole

The likely reason why some LIV players are resigning their PGA Tour membership and Mickelson has not

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Despite CEO of LIV Golf Greg Norman saying that it was unnecessary, most of the golfers who have decided to join LIV have resigned their PGA Tour membership.

Kevin Na was the first to publicly announce his resignation from the PGA Tour, to which Norman told the Associated Press:

“I’m a bit surprised, actually. The players don’t have to resign from the Tour. That was Kevin’s decision for whatever reason he wanted to make it. I respect the man for making a bold decision. I respect the person for wanting to come on board with us, because he knows he has a great opportunity with LIV.”

“I’ll applaud him for it, but he didn’t have to, from our behalf, because LIV would be there (for him). Like I’ve always said, we’re going to back up the players. I’ll back up the players as much as I need to, to give them their rights to be able to do whatever they want to do as independent contractors.”

Na’s reasoning for resigning is seemingly to avoid any disciplinary action from the PGA Tour.

In the statement he made on Saturday, the 38-year-old used the words “rather than face potential discipline and/or legal action.” He also stated that he “wanted the ‘freedom to play wherever I want and exercising my right as a free agent gives me that opportunity.’”

In regard to Na’s resignation, Golf Digest’s Dan Rapaport said: “Word on the street is Kevin Na will keep his PGA Tour pension despite leaving for LIV. By “resigning” he takes away the possibility of punishment; basically a retirement from the tour, so normal that he’s still entitled to his post-career benefits. Strategic decision.”

Yesterday, more players resigned from the PGA Tour including Sergio Garcia, Louis Oosthuizen, Branden Grace, Charl Schwartzel and Graeme McDowell.

It’s likely that these players have the same reason for resigning from the PGA Tour as Na does, with the best way to avoid punishment from the PGA Tour seemingly to be by no longer being a member of the PGA Tour.

In another bombshell today, former world number one Dustin Johnson also resigned from the PGA Tour.

“It’s hard to speak on what the consequences might be but I’ve resigned my membership of the Tour and that’s the plan for now,'” Johnson said at his pre-tournament press conference at the Centurion Club, while outlining his intention to compete at golf’s four majors, which could be the primary motivator for DJ’s resignation.

Golfweek’s Eamon Lynch speculated that players giving up their Tour card was likely the best way to ensure that they can compete in the majors “That in turn removes the most likely basis on which the USGA might have prevented them playing the U.S. Open this month.”

While the majority of the golfers making the switch to LIV are resigning their Tour cards, there’s one who is adamant about keeping his: Phil Mickelson, who outlined his reason why to Sports Illustrated’s Bob Harig:

“I have not resigned my membership. I worked really hard to earn that lifetime membership. And I’m hopeful that I’ll have the ability to play wherever I want, where it’s the PGA Tour, LIV or wherever else I want.’’

Eamon Lynch also laid out the case for why Mickelson may be attempting to hold on to his Tour card, telling Golf Channel:

“This relationship with the USGA has always been combative, it’s a hostile relationship, and I probably think that he knows that the USGA would not necessarily be that keen on seeing Phil here. They don’t want the circus of what’s going to go on around it, and I think Phil would probably enjoy bringing that circus, and he’s also putting himself out there as the potential plaintiff in chief for the Saudis here. As to settle the question of what the status of LIV players will be in the majors.”

Should the PGA Tour discipline Mickelson the situation may well end up as a court case that could determine plenty.

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19th Hole

‘Eager to cash his conscience for a check’ – Leading analyst savages Mickelson’s LIV statement

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After a wild day which saw Phil Mickelson finally commit to join LIV Golf, Golfweek columnist and Golf Channel leading analyst Eamon Lynch has slammed Lefty in an explosive putdown.

Never afraid of making his views known on social media, most recently his cynicism surrounding the LIV golf series and its associates, Lynch while speaking on Golf Channel claims that the 51-year-old’s “competitive career on the PGA Tour is essentially over.”

Following the report on Mickelson’s gambling issues, Lynch puts the boot in:

“This is his new reality, that he has a gambling issue, that his competitive career on the PGA Tour is essentially over. That he’s beholden to the Saudis and that he’s not only willing but eager to cash his conscience for a check.”

Referring to comments made in Alan Shipnuck’s now-famed unauthorized biography, Lynch says,

“And let’s not forget here, Phil Mickelson was explicit on the record talking about how the Saudis were murderers and human rights abusers.

And he’s put out a statement saying how he’s worked on becoming a better person and a better man. And if his idea of becoming a better man is to become a willing stooge for Saudi sportswashing for murderers and human rights abusers, then it doesn’t say much about the man he was beforehand.”

Lynch has been openly critical of Dustin Johnson’s move to the rebel league, tweeting a report headlined, “Dustin Johnson was presented a test of character by the Saudis. Unsurprisingly, he failed it.”

Speaking of yet another headline act in the Saudi/PGA/USGA battle of morals and money, Lynch says,

“This relationship with the USGA has always been combative, it’s a hostile relationship, and I probably think that he knows that the USGA would not necessarily be that keen on seeing Phil here. They don’t want the circus of what’s going to go on around it, and I think Phil would probably enjoy bringing that circus, and he’s also putting himself out there as the potential plaintiff in chief for the Saudis here. As to settle the question of what the status of LIV players will be in the majors.”

Hinting that Mickelson is the key to the future of golf as we know it, Lynch suggests, Phil has status to play all four major championships right now, and if he’s the guy to be kicked out, then he becomes their plaintiff.”

“The bodies that run the majors are very much in lockstep with what they believe to be the best for the future of the game, and there is no daylight between them and the PGA Tour on that. But how quickly they can align behind the PGA Tour is really the unknown question here. I don’t think they’re in a hurry to do that until they see how the legal aspects of this are going to play out because whatever action the PGA Tour takes, you’re almost certain that’s going to trigger litigation by players, by LIV and we’ll see where the chips fall then.”

After months of Mickelson insisting the players are making a choice, that he was using the Saudi league as leverage against the PGA Tour, it appears that, according to the much-respected reporter, he may in fact be the stooge for his paymasters.

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19th Hole

Dustin Johnson RESIGNS from PGA Tour making him ineligible for future Ryder Cups

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On Tuesday morning, Dustin Johnson confirmed that he had resigned his PGA Tour membership.

In a press conference in the UK ahead of the opening LIV Golf Series, the former World Number One broke the news, admitting that he was unsure of what the consequences of his decision would entail.

Johnson also revealed that he planned on playing the four majors unless he hears otherwise, but the 37-year-old will now be ineligible to compete in future Ryder Cups.

Asked if the decision was a big one for him, DJ told media:

“It was. But hopefully, all things are subject to change, and we’ll be able to participate. If it doesn’t, then it was another thing that I’ve really had to think long and hard about, and ultimately I decided to come do this and play out here and like I said I’m excited about it.

Obviously, the Ryder Cup is unbelievable, and it’s definitely meant a lot to me, and I’m proud to say that I’ve played and represented my country. and hopefully, I get a chance to do that again, but I don’t make the rules.”

One reporter suggested that people will say that Johnson ultimately chose money over his country, to which the multiple major champ said: “I’ve chosen what’s best for me and my family.”

The news comes off the back of an interview published Monday, where Mickelson explained to Sports Illustrated’s Bob Harig why he had not resigned his PGA Tour membership:

“I have not resigned my membership. I worked really hard to earn that lifetime membership. And I’m hopeful that I’ll have the ability to play wherever I want, where it’s the PGA Tour, LIV or wherever else I want.’’

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