Bryson DeChambeau, the 2020 U.S. Open champion who was one of the first big names to sign up for LIV Golf, says he feels bad for the players who stayed loyal to the PGA Tour.
The PGA Tour, DP World Tour and LIV Golf League ended their bitter two-year dispute and announced an agreement Tuesday to form one unified commercial entity.
“I do feel bad for the PGA Tour players because they were told one thing and something else happened, and our side, we were told one thing and it’s come to fruition,” DeChambeau told CNN. “It does stink a little bit from my perspective that the PGA Tour players are not necessarily winning. I hope they can find a way to make sure that they are valued in the same way that we are over at LIV. I think that’ll happen. It’s just going to take some time.”
The shockwaves from the deal are set to reverberate for a while. PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan faced calls to resign at a meeting with players at the Canadian Open in Toronto.
The most aggrieved players are likely to be those such as Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy and Hideki Matsuyama who turned down eye-popping sums from LIV Golf to remain loyal to the PGA Tour, only to see the tours agree to work together.
DeChambeau defended the backers of LIV Golf and in particular Yasir Al-Rumayyan, the governor of Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund who will chair the board of the new entity.
“What I can tell you is that … Yasir has always been a staunch supporter of golf globally and wanting to grow the game,” DeChambeau said. “That’s been his vision from the start, when we first started talking a few years ago. As it’s come to fruition now, I think this is the best thing that could ever happen to the game of golf.”
DeChambeau deflected a question about Saudi Arabia’s human rights record. Several advocacy groups, including 9/11 Families United, a group of nearly 2,500 survivors of family members killed or injured in the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, released statements criticizing the new agreement Tuesday.
“I mean, look, it’s unfortunate what has happened, but that is not something I can speak on because I’m a golfer,” DeChambeau said.