Breaking down one of the most bizarre press conferences in golf history
LIV Golf’s new boys Brooks Koepka, Patrick Reed and Bryson DeChambeau were among those thrown in front of the cameras in Portland. And we couldn’t take our eyes off it
Every once in a while, golf – like any other sport – gives rise to a press conference that you just can’t take your eyes off of. It will come as no surprise that all of these cases this year have involved LIV Golf.
Prior to the Portland event – the second of eight in 2022 and the first on American soil – were always going to be fascinating affairs. Brooks Koepka, Bryson DeChambeau, Patrick Reed and Pat Perez – famous introverts who rarely speak their minds – were among those shoved in front of the microphones as they prepared for their first foray into the show escapes.
And yet again those listening were treated to a series of responses so sociopathic and narcissistic they would make Boris Johnson blush.
Before we begin, one last time for those at the back – or, in this case, up front: we know you joined LIV Golf for the money. (Yes, we would all do the same. Blah blah blah.)
The first were Koepka, Perez and Reed…
“It was amazing, way different from the vibe of the PGA Tour where everyone is on their own and everyone stays on their own side. It’s amazing to see guys that I’ve seen for a long time, on the Tour for a long time, but to be able to hang out. The three of us were together the other night and had a drink and a laugh, and we’d never done that before, so it was kind of cool. It’s just a whole different vibe. is amazing, though. Everyone’s happy to see each other. You know, you have music on the lineup. It’s just a different chord. I couldn’t be more excited to be a part of it.
The PGA Tour, of course, is famous for not letting players do what they want and hang out with whoever they want before a tournament.
Maybe, Pat, the reason you can go out and sink a few yards early is because, really, you don’t care where you end up in the event because you’ll always take mega dollars.
“I’m really excited. Anytime I can bring that team aspect and play for something other than myself. I not only play for my family and everyone like that, but I also play for my teammates. And for some reason it gives me a bit more of an edge, a bit more motivation to go out and play even harder so to have 14 chances to do that throughout the year is amazing I can’t wait, and honestly, for me, it’s going to be a lot of fun.
Ah, yes, the team aspect of this whole debacle. Patrick, I’ll double the money LIV Golf pays you if you, or someone else, can explain to me how the team aspect works.
“You’ll never believe me, but we didn’t have the conversation until it was all done at the US Open and we understood and just said I was going to go one way or the other. other. I am here.”
Well, part of that sentence isn’t a lie, I guess. For the record, Koepka removed the PGA Tour from his social media profiles the day after the US Open. He was almost confirmed as a LIV Golf player a few hours later.
“For me, what I’ve had to go through for the past two years – my knees, the pain, rehab, all that – you realize you need a little more time off. I’ll be the first to say that. , it hasn’t been easy the last couple of years, and I think I have more breaks, a bit more time at home to make sure I’m 100% before I go play in an event and don’t don’t feel obligated to play right away. It was a big thing for me.
Koepka has played 16 times this season, 20 last season and 14 the season before. He’s chosen to play in it all – a freedom he won’t be given in the LIV series.
“[The 54-hole format] is more appropriate to see who is the best player that week, because everyone starts at exactly the same time. There are no more draws. You are now on the golf course at exactly the same time. Whatever the weather is like that day, that’s what you’re playing.
You just couldn’t resist, could you? If anyone has been following this closely, Reed’s engraver’s Twitter account has regularly accused the PGA Tour of giving the 2018 Masters champion a draw. Some might say having to play afternoon golf then that you want to play in the morning is hardly an excuse for sleeping on a killer diet.
” I am 46 years old. I played 515 tournaments. I’ve been on the road since 1998. I’ve been on the road longer than Matt Wolff is alive. I have a child of almost four years old. I missed the birth of my son last year. On August 18, I received a call from my wife who was going to give birth. I am in Jersey. I’m getting ready to start the FedEx Playoffs. I am 116 on the list. I can’t leave. I can’t miss it. I can’t come back. I can’t get there and back without spending 150,000,000 on a private flight. I do not do it. So I had to suck it and I had to miss the birth of my son. Luckily I made the cut and upped my status by playing well, but it still sucked. I have to tell him one day why I wasn’t there.
Sound reasoning, sure, but thousands of people miss the birth of their children for whatever reason – work or otherwise. But many of them won’t have the opportunity to point to a huge mansion and say, “That. That’s the reason I wasn’t there when you were born.
I like that Perez doesn’t seem to care. He’s like a guy who walked into his local pub bragging that he just sold his house for double what he paid and everyone wants him to shut up and leave, but he just sit there drinking his pint and telling everyone what a genius he is.
“Seeing how miraculously the purses have suddenly skyrocketed on the PGA Tour, it just goes to show that they obviously believe it’s not just a real threat, but also a great tour if they go and copy what we do.”
A moment of reflection on Reed’s use of “we”. Just huge.
“I think 2018 or 2019 when this all came up, so the conversation has been going on for a while. What is three years?
Koepka, here, answering a question about the start of his talks around LIV Golf. Remember when he said nothing was mentioned until after the US Open?
“We actually have an off-season where not only can we be healthy.”
From September 5, 2021 to January 9, 2022, Reed performed in six events. All his choice.
The previous season, he played in the rescheduled US Open and Masters, as well as the Zozo Championship between July and January.
The previous season he had played in the Ryder Cup – he loves team golf, remember? – the WGC and the 18-player Hero World Challenge hitting and laughing in heaven between September and January.
And the season before he played in the Zozo, the WGC, the Hero World Challenge and the Presidents Cup – he loves team golf, remember? – between August and January.
I think that’s probably enough.
“You don’t do a month on the road anymore. I don’t have kids – that I know of – so being home isn’t really a thing for me, but life goes on. There are things we miss at home, being friends, family, lots of birthdays. It would just be nice to be home a bit more.
The rest of this LIV Golf season will see these guys play two events in July, as well as The Open, two in September and three in October. All in different corners of the globe.
Next year there will be 14 close events in – say, given that Reed is talking about an off-season – eight months. Plus the four majors.
You’re going to be on the road a bit, guys.
“We are trying to develop the game.”
The QI buzzer has just sounded. Then how ?
“Well, given the fact that there’s more golf on TV, I mean, yeah, it’s going to grow the game; right? More people are watching. I mean… the more golf on TV, the more golf there is in front of you, I mean, right? It’s technically putting it in front of people, putting golf in front of people if it’s on, what, half the time people are on their phones watching Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, whatever. They’ll pick up clips from here, clips from anywhere. It does not matter.”
Glad you were able to clear that up.
We haven’t even gotten to the other press conference yet. Does anyone still read? OK, we will continue to fight.
Then come Bryson DeChambeau, Abraham Ancer and Matthew Wolff. We will start with BAD on the team aspect…
“It’s different. It’s wild. A lot of strategic decisions have to be made now. I feel like my life has changed in a really unique way, and just being able to have certain players and strategizing who are going to be in certain positions and how we’re going to move forward on this golf course to even have potential coaches coaching the team or managers and how that all fits into the puzzle It’s just this news unique opportunity that I’m excited to put together some kind of puzzle piece and figure it out and make it a Crushers team. My goal is to make Crushers have a unique identity, something different and hopefully that people look forward to watching every week.
Bryson De Chambeau
I mean, that’s pretty much the answer we expected from Bryson, isn’t it? If anyone can explain how the team format works at these events, it’s him. (Spoiler alert: he can’t.)
“In all other sports, you are part of a team.”
You already know it’s going to be okay.
“Unfortunately, I did not participate in any [Ryder or Presidents Cup] teams again, but you see so many guys that show up on occasion, and the best fate comes when they’re on a team, and they really try to play not just for themselves, but for everyone else.
SOMEONE PLEASE ASK HOW THE TEAM FORMAT WORKS.
“It’s going to be incredible for Mexican golf. I can’t wait to see where Mexican golf goes. I’ll have a bit more time to get involved and actually be there to try to grow the game there.
We’re sure you’ll find plenty of time to do that between Thailand and Saudi Arabia for tournaments you absolutely have to play because the boss says so.
“I run and operate my golf as a business and I want to be one of the best players in the world. This will give me more resources and opportunities to reinvest in my local community in Dallas and my home. originally from California where I can do things for the junior golf tours, improve my foundation and also build the multi-sport complex that I am going to build shortly.
Bryson De Chambeau
Bryson, you don’t have a soul, remember? You sold it to the highest bidder.
I have a question for LIV Golf. Why did you decide to hold these press conferences? As entertaining and downright confusing as they were for us, they would still end badly for you, especially if players were to continue behaving in such a hostile manner.
That being said, I’m going to watch it again…