SAN DIEGO — The newest episode of the Brooks Koepka-Bryson DeChambeau feud didn’t stray from its amusing course on Tuesday, persevering with to be golf’s most entertaining sideshow in years.
Koepka, together with his regular grumpiness, stated of his relationship with DeChambeau: “We don’t like each other.” He added, “I don’t know if I’d call it a conflict,” then instructed that a number of the reporters standing subsequent to him in all probability didn’t like one another both.
About an hour later, a cheerful, virtually giddy, DeChambeau was all smiles speaking concerning the matter of Koepka at Torrey Pines Golf Course, the place the 2021 U.S. Open will start Thursday. It was a stark distinction to 2 weeks in the past when DeChambeau appeared perturbed with Koepka and somberly stated the PGA Tour ought to think about whether or not Koepka’s snarky movies and tweets trolling DeChambeau have been, “how a tour player should behave.”
On Tuesday, DeChambeau as an alternative referred to as the general public back-and-forth “fun” and “great for the game of golf.”
“There’s a point where it’s great banter,” he stated, with a joyful grin. “I personally love it.”
So, nothing has modified. The quarrel between two, brawny, 20-something skilled golfers paid to put on natty golf apparel and completely buffed footwear continued with no script — a pillow combat that stands out in a world dominated by means of courtly pleasantries.
There was, nevertheless, one bona fide disappointment revealed Tuesday: This yr’s U.S. Open, the place DeChambeau is the defending champion, is not going to give golf followers what they wished most, which was Koepka and DeChambeau going head-to-head in the identical taking part in group within the first and second rounds on Thursday and Friday.
The duo will as an alternative tee off many hours aside with different taking part in companions, which suggests they won’t even see one another at Torrey Pines except they occur to card related scores early and are paired within the remaining rounds on the weekend. Golf followers ought to pray for that end result.
Shortly after the tee occasions for the opening rounds have been introduced on Tuesday morning, a report surfaced that DeChambeau, or his representatives, had contacted the United States Golf Association, which conducts the occasion, and requested that Koepka not be a part of DeChambeau’s group.
Within an hour, representatives for DeChambeau and the united statesG.A. denied that DeChambeau had made such an enchantment, one thing DeChambeau later confirmed.
“I would be OK with that,” he stated of taking part in with Koepka, “but there was never really anything that went through me.”
Koepka stated nobody approached him about taking part in with DeChambeau, nor did he care who his companions have been. With a straight face, he then dropped this heavy thought: “I’m not concerned about what other people think. If I was concerned about what everybody else thought, I’d have been in a world of pain.”
On a lighter be aware, there was a lot dialogue about whether or not the spat between Koepka and DeChambeau is sweet for golf. DeChambeau and Koepka, curiously with the identical thought, insisted that it was, and Koepka supplied proof.
“It’s bringing new eyeballs,” Koepka stated. “It’s pretty much been on every news channel. Pretty much everything you look at online, it’s got this in the headline or it’s up there as a big news story. To me, that’s growing the game.
“You’re putting it in front of eyeballs, you’re putting it in front of people who probably don’t normally look at golf, don’t play it, and it might get them involved.”
Not lengthy afterward, Webb Simpson, the 2012 U.S. Open champion who has some of the sunny personalities in golf, agreed wholeheartedly, though he additionally dropped a bomb of a sort-of accusation.
“I think they’ve got a rivalry now, and I think it’s good,” Simpson stated. “There used to be more golf rivalries that became well-known.”
Simpson then lobbed this notion: What if the entire so-called Koepka-DeChambeau grudge was a ruse, a conspiracy between the 2 to boost their social media profiles to enhance their possibilities of getting a number of the moolah within the PGA Tour’s new $40 million Player Impact Program?
The initiative pays end-of-season bonus cash to 10 gamers based mostly on an amalgam of metrics, with a prime measure being a golfer’s Google search reputation.
“I don’t know if they texted each other on the side and possibly went in agreement,” Simpson stated, with a smile. “You know, let’s play this thing up for the Player Impact Program. That was kind of one of my thoughts.”
Wow. No surprise DeChambeau was smiling Tuesday. We already know Koepka has the practiced poker face.