Phil Mickelson makes Hideki Matsuyama offer to join his LIV Golf team

Phil Mickelson encourages Hideki Matsuyama to join LIV Golf after seeing him fly home standby from PGA Tour event. 

Andy Roberts's picture
Mon, 5 Jun 2023
Phil Mickelson makes Hideki Matsuyama offer to join his LIV Golf team

LIV Golf's Phil Mickelson has encouraged PGA Tour star Hideki Matsuyama to come join his HyFlyers GC after seeing him fly home standby at the airport on Sunday. 

Matsuyama, 31, had raced into the lead early Saturday at Jack Nicklaus' annual Memorial Tournament but he soon fell back into the pack when closing with rounds of 75 and 76. 

That saw Matsuyama finish the week T16. 

A photo then emerged on social media of Matsuyama checking out of the PGA Tour stop while standing in a queue to fly home standby with Spirit Airlines. 

LIV Golf fan page @LIVGolfEnth first picked it up, and then Mickelson replied to the tweet. 

LIV Golf Enthusiast tweeted: 

"Hideki Matsuyama was swayed by the PGA Tour to turn down 9 figures from LIV Golf, Captaincy of his own team & a yearly tournament in Japan. Now he's flying standby at Spirit Airlines. Cue Frank Sinatra:  Regrets, I've had a few..."

Mickelson then replied: 

"This isn’t how the HYFLYERS FLY. Hideki should come fly with us."

Rumours circulated heavily last season that Matsuyama was offered a huge $400m - twice as much as Mickelson - to join the Saudi-bankrolled LIV Golf League. 

But Matsuyama refused. For now. 


LIV Golf CEO Greg Norman is said to not only want Matsuyama for his major talent as a Masters champion, but also the fact he wants to host a number of tournaments across Asia and especially in Japan. 

Mickelson not only targeted Matsuyama on Sunday as he also posted a congratulatory tweet to Memorial Tournament champion Viktor Hovland, who edged out Denny McCarthy with a par on the first extra hole. 

Hovland, like Matsuyama, was also heavily linked with a move away from the PGA Tour to join LIV Golf last season. 

Perhaps Mickelson is also trying to butter up the Norwegian to join his HyFlyers. 

Mickelson tweeted: 

"When Viktor Hovland turned pro he was a solid player. He has since worked hard on his game,increased his club head speed a lot,improved his putting and chipping immensely and is now one of the best in the game.After this win and his play in PGA,he’s a/the favorite to win US open."

A number of LIV Golf players will be competing at the US Open next week.

Check them out in full here

LIV Golf returns to action at the end of the month at former DP World Tour and Ryder Cup venue, Valderrama, Spain.

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Which PGA Tour star do you think will be the next to join the LIV Golf League? Or will the PGA Tour keep hold of their star boys? Share your thoughts and comments over on the GolfMagic social media channels.