Brooks Koepka, Dustin Johnson and Bryson DeChambeau believe that the atmosphere between players from other tours and LIV Golf was very respectful at the Masters earlier this month and that it was an eye opener for fans who have been caught on one side of the divide.
Eighteen players from the Saudi backed tour teed it up at Augusta National with both Brooks Koepka and Phil Mickelson sharing second as three LIV Golfers finished inside the top-4.
This was one of the most highly anticipated Masters tournaments ever with speculation rife over any potential tensions particularly at the Champions Dinner, but that went off without a hitch and the cordial atmosphere transferred itself to the golf course it seems.
“Yeah, I think it was the best thing for the fans to see what happened at the Masters,” said Koepka who jumped back into the top-50 in the world (39). “We kind of experience it all behind closed doors, and I know when I’m home, I can’t speak for Bryson, but when me and DJ are home, we see Rory there at Grove.
“Keegan, Matt Fitzpatrick. Patrick Cantlay lives on the same street; Fowler does, as well. I could run into 15 Tour guys if I wanted to in a day, and nobody has really had any negative feedback, any negative thing to say, and that would be the time to say it.
“But I think it was good just for the fans to see that we still communicate, we still play together, we still practice together, do everything the exact same. We’re still the same people.”
2020 Masters winner Dustin Johnson felt that it was important for players on the LIV and PGA Tours to diffuse any potential tensions out of respect for the Masters.
“Yeah, I’m the same. Obviously where we live, I think half the golf world lives in South Florida. I see all the guys all the time. It was nice to see at Augusta, see a few of the guys that you don’t see in Jupiter or out here on LIV, a couple buddies I got to see and hang out with. But yeah, the fans were great, heard a lot of “go Aces,” and I think they were really good at Augusta. Obviously that is one place where fans are always very respectful. They don’t really have a choice, either, but yeah, it is the Masters, and I think everyone just respects Augusta and the Masters. It’s more about the golf than what Tour you play on. I think that’s how it should be all the time.
“Yeah, I’d second that,” added DeChambeau who missed the halfway cut at Augusta. “At the Masters it was awesome. Everybody that I had previously had relationships with, nothing changed from my perspective. Like I play out of Dallas National, and I see Spieth every once in a while, and we don’t have any issues. There’s no problems. Will Zalatoris, same thing, there’s no issues. I think a lot of it’s the media sometimes, not necessarily you guys. Australia has been fantastic.
“But sometimes that’s just what it is. I understand it. I think we all do. But at a certain point in time we’re all golfers. We still play great golf, and as you can see at the Masters you had three of the four up at the top were LIV players.”
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