Phil Mickelson makes fresh claim about PGA Tour in frank LIV Golf discussion

Phil Mickelson opened up on his life, career, PGA Tour issues and the future of LIV Golf in the latest edition of the Fairway to Heaven podcast.

Phil Mickelson
Phil Mickelson

Phil Mickelson says he hopes the success of LIV Golf will be the flowers at his funeral. 

Mickelson made the claim in the most recent edition of the Fairway to Heaven podcast. 

Over the course of 49 minutes, Mickelson spoke on a number of topics. 

He talked about Bryson DeChambeau's US Open triumph, the future of LIV, the tumultuous early days of his career on the breakaway tour and what he wants his legacy in the game to be. 

Mickelson was involved in an all-time awkward news conference at Centurion Club in June 2022 after spending a few months in self-imposed exile. 

The six-time major champion sparked widespread outrage when his comments about the Saudis and human rights abuses were published by Alan Shipnuck. 

It was later revealed that Lefty's unflinching thoughts really almost brought down the whole show before it began. 

Yet here we are in July 2024 and talks between the PGA Tour and LIV Golf's backers, the PIF of Saudi Arabia, are ongoing in an attempt to unify the men's game once again. 

Recalling standing on the first tee at Centurion Club, Mickelson said: "I was all-in, I believed fully this is the right thing to do but we were all taking so much heat initially. 

"And we knew that was going to be the case. We were told exactly what the response was going to be and yet we did it anyways because we believed that it was the right thing to do. 

"And that's why I think so many of the characters in the game are on LIV because they have the guts to either play the game differently, like Bryson, or they have the guts to just go down the road that they believe no matter what other people say.

"We were taking so much heat that I wasn't as outgoing, let's say, but I was really excited and happy because I knew over time -- I knew the first two years were going to be rough -- and here we are, two years in now, and it's totally different."

He added: "We're having a blast here. We're having so much fun."

Phil Mickelson
Phil Mickelson

Mickelson was also asked what he believes his legacy be. 

"Hopefully LIV Golf," he said. "And helping get the game to a younger crowd. 

"And getting the game to younger players and giving them infrastructure to become great. 

"Helping to grow the game on a global basis [which are] the things that all LIV golfers are doing."

Phil Mickelson
Phil Mickelson

Mickelson then turned his thoughts to the PGA Tour. 

"Elevated events and equity in the [PGA] Tour wasn't an option when they came to LIV," he said.  

"And so the fact that we are invested and involved and integrated into the success of LIV -- and I'm happy for all the guys on the Tour that they now have all that stuff and they should -- but where we're at we're attracting a different crowd and we're attracting a global crowd.

"That's critical to the long-term success of the game, and it's something that the old model of the Tour would never transcend into because you couldn't get all the guys to travel the world and attract players that don't play the game to watch."

He added: "Hopefully the success of LIV is what I'm known for."

Watch the full interview here

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