Mickelson ‘at peace’ if he doesn’t play PGA, Ryder Cup again
Phil Mickelson says he will be “at peace” if he never plays in a PGA Tour or Ryder Cup event again, nearly a year after his explosive comments about the Saudi-funded LIV golf series provoked an uproar.
In an interview with Sports Illustrated published Monday, the six-time major winner said he wasn’t worried that he might be frozen out of PGA Tour events for good.
Mickelson was suspended by the PGA Tour last year after becoming one of the earliest big names to defect to the controversial LIV Tour.
The 52-year-old accepted LIV despite telling a US journalist that the tour’s Saudi sponsors were “scary” with a “terrible” human rights record.
Mickelson said last June that he hoped to play on the PGA Tour again.
But in his comments to Sports Illustrated, the veteran said that he was now not indifferent about playing on the tour again.
“If I wasn’t going to play another PGA Tour event, I’m totally at peace with it,” Mickelson said.
The American said that while he believed a lawsuit against the PGA tour could allow him to legally return to the tour, he planned to “reduce” his number of events while prioritizing majors .
“I’m motivated, but I don’t see the benefit of playing more,” said the 45-time PGA Tour winner.
“The majors are where you leave your mark. That creates a lifetime memory. If I win another Tour event, who cares? It’s not like it’s going to do anything for how it looks me on my career.
“Another major would be a special, special moment. That’s really where I want to succeed. And definitely, it would mean winning a lot of some LIV events because of the role I played in the way it was created .”
Mickelson, who was once seen as a virtual guarantee to captain the US Ryder Cup at some point, also said he would be fine not being part of the biennial team tournament again.
“I’ve had the pleasure of being a part of the Ryder Cup as a player 12 times and as vice-captain once,” Mickelson said.
“I’ve had more good experiences than probably anyone. If I’m not a part of it, I’m at peace with that too.”
Mickelson, meanwhile, agreed there could be an uneasy atmosphere at the Champions Dinner at the Masters in April, where staunch critics of LIV Golf including Tiger Woods will be dining with some the biggest names on the upstart circuit.
Asked if he expected discomfort or unhappiness at the dinner, Mickelson said: “There could be, but not for me. I’m very comfortable with where I’m at .”