Phil Mickelson's former gambling partner Billy Walters says Lefty 'probably got carried away in the moment' over his alleged desire to bet $400,000 on the Ryder Cup and it was the only time they discussed betting on golf.
Mickelson's gambling stories are the stuff of legend.
On 11 August an extract of Walters' forthcoming book Gambler: Secrets from a Life at Risk dropped on The Firepit Collective.
Walters claims he essentially has all of the receipts from Mickelson's bets over three decades.
The convicted felon claimed Mickelson wagered up to $1bn, with more than $100m in losses.
So the story goes, Mickelson was so confident of a U.S. victory that he wanted to bet $400,000 on Team USA to emerge victorious at Medinah in 2012.
Walters reportedly suggested to Mickelson that he had 'lost his mind' and implored him to think of Pete Rose, the former Cincinatti Reds coach who admitted he bet on baseball and was subsequently banned.
Walters claims he refused that bet and Mickelson later released a statement about the allegation.
Some columnists have claimed that Mickelson should be further investigated.
"The reputation of golf, and the integrity of its competitions, must be of concern to all stewards of the game," Eamon Lynch wrote for Golfweek.
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Walters has now given an interview to ESPN where he outlined his side of the story.
He told Outside the Lines:
"I said 'Don't you know what happened to Pete Rose? ... You betting on the Ryder Cup, that would destroy your career.'"— Outside the Lines (@OTLonESPN) August 17, 2023
Renowned sports bettor Billy Walters recounts when Phil Mickelson allegedly asked to wager on the 2012 Ryder Cup. pic.twitter.com/PMgwqItHyX
Team Europe, led by Jose Maria Olazabal, overcame a 10-6 deficit to win the trophy 14 1/2 points to 13 1/2.
Walters was jailed for five years in 2017 for insider trading, but his sentence was commuted in 2021 by former US president Donald Trump.
His latest allegation is the Mickelson laundered money to pay off his gambling debts but escaped punishment after a trick by his lawyer Harry Houdini would've been proud of.
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