Golf reporter rips into Justin Thomas: "We've always had this edgy relationship"

Alan Shipnuck goes in on Justin Thomas following criticism of the golf reporter's new book. 

Golf reporter rips into Justin Thomas: "We've always had this edgy relationship"
Golf reporter rips into Justin Thomas: "We've always had this edgy…

Golf biographer Alan Shipnuck has hit back at Justin Thomas' recent criticism of his new LIV and Let Die book by claiming he has always had an "edgy relationship" with the two-time US PGA champion. 

Shipnuck then added Thomas barely even features in his new book because he doesn't "find anything about his life or career worth telling" from his perspective. 

Earlier this month, Thomas challenged the accuracy of Shipnuck's reporting in his book when taking aim at an extract about an anonymous Ryder Cup player allegedly ripping into Rory McIlroy over his public stance in the PGA Tour - LIV Golf battle. 

The player told Firepit Collective reporter Shipnuck: "F*** Rory. I'm so sick of hearing how he's some kind of hero who is saving golf. He's bought and paid for like everybody else. It's just his money is coming from the other side."

Thomas then tweeted:

"I’d like to speak on behalf of a lot of Tour players and say we’re sick of @AlanShipnuck doing what he does. Bring positivity and good stories to help grow the game of golf, not try and make money bashing guys, earning zero trust, with a lot of incorrect information. Ridiculous."

Brooks Koepka also chimed in: 

"And LIV players."

Shipnuck has since responded to those tweets, first in an interview with The Times and now in greater detail on the Fore Play Pod with Riggs at Barstool Sports. 

It was there where Shipnuck went in on Thomas, who he considers will now "make more money finishing dead last in a no cut, elevated event than anyone on the golf beat is going to make."


Shipnuck told Barstool Sports: 

"Yeah, it's a little disorienting and it's obviously not, you know on a human element, it doesn't feel great. But the Thomas tweet was so revealing because when he says 'all sides' what he means is his side. The Tour, we all know, coddles the players and protects them. In the context of the LIV story, they have been spoon fed all this stuff by Jay Monahan and Jimmy Dunne. 'We won the battle, we control the board seats, we control the future of golf.' Well, I've talked to a few businessmen, and I don't know any company where one guy puts in all the money and has no influence. I love that he put in his tweet, 'I'm sick of Alan Shipnuck trying to make money'. Justin, you are going to make more money finishing dead last in a no cut, elevated event than anyone on the golf beat is going to make, and especially from books where there is really not the money that people think there is, but these players become so greedy and so voracious. It's like I write a book, I'm trying to put my kids through college, but I'm the bad guy?! It just didn't really track with reality. I'm not here to do the players bidding, I never have been and so there's been hard feelings for 30 years because I feel like more important to me than the relationship with the players is the relationship I have with the readers. They count on me to give it to them straight and to tell them what's really happening, and that's just always been my role in the game. Sometimes it affects your relationship with the players because they don't always want to hear the truth. A lot of guys on Tour put their trust in me to tell this story so Justin's not one of them. We've always had this edgy relationship, like he's not even a figure in this book. He can't say I've ever burned him because I've never dealt with him really. I just give him a wide berth because I don't find anything about his life or career worth telling from my perspective. Whatever his objections are second or third hand. I don't know exactly what he's even referring to there. We all do the job differently, and there's other guys on the beat who are a little more gentle and they're more willing to nurture those relationships with the players at the expense of maybe sitting on some really good information. If I have something good, I never sit on it. My job is to disseminate information. If players are upset about it then I feel that's really on them and not me. I'm not a publicist, I'm not here to do their bidding. The relationship I really value is with the reader and so that's the one I'm always going to honour and uphold."

What do you make of Shipnuck's new book which goes into greater detail about the current PGA Tour - LIV Golf divide? Share your thoughts and comments over on the GolfMagic social media channels. 

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