Both Phil Mickelson and Brooks Koepka, who’ve been under fire since they ditched the PGA Tour last year for hundreds of millions from a government rife with human-rights violations, shared their feelings on Twitter.
While reposting a news story about the merger, Mickelson wrote, “Awesome day today 😊.”
Koepka was more enigmatic in his statement. He called out Golf Channel analyst Brandel Chamblee, who’d relentlessly criticized him and other LIV golfers for accepting money from a “murderous dictator.”
The always-snarky Koepka tweeted simply, “Welfare Check on Chamblee.”
Welfare Check on Chamblee
— Brooks Koepka (@BKoepka) June 6, 2023
Tuesday’s merger means Koepka, Mickelson and the scores of others who moved to LIV will keep their massive sign-on bonuses while playing in the same tournaments as those who turned down money to stay loyal to the PGA Tour, like Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy.
Some star golfers who rejected Saudi money appeared to have been blindsided by Tuesday’s news.
Collin Morikawa, the 18th-ranked golfer in the world, insinuated that he found about the merger on Twitter along with everyone else. When delivered the merger news by an ESPN reporter, an unnamed PGA golfer reportedly told ESPN, “No fucking way.”
I love finding out morning news on Twitter
— Collin Morikawa (@collin_morikawa) June 6, 2023
PGA Tour officials and American pundits had praised golfers who refused to jump ship and characterized those who signed with LIV as traitors. The PGA Tour took on a different tone Tuesday as it announced a merger with its biggest rival.
“After two years of disruption and distraction, this is a historic day for the game we all know and love,” PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan said in a statement.
Among those taking a victory lap for predicting the merger was Donald Trump, who posted publicly last summer that an “inevitable merger” would come soon from the “very disloyal PGA.” He also praised LIV repeatedly as he hosted tournaments for the tour at his golf courses.
Posting to Truth Social on Tuesday, Trump called the merger “a big, beautiful, and glamorous deal” that’s “great news” for the world of golf.