Phil Mickelson among 11 LIV Golf players to file lawsuit over PGA Tour suspension

(Getty Pictures)

Phil Mickelson and Ian Poulter are among the 11 LIV Golf players who have filed an antitrust complaint against the PGA Tour to challenge their suspensions.

The group includes three players – Talor Gooch, Hudson Swafford and Matt Jones – who are seeking a temporary restraining order to allow them to compete in the FedEx Cup play-offs, which begin next week.

The complaint and request for a temporary restraining order were filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.

Bryson De ChambeauAbraham Ancer, Carlos Ortiz, Pat Perez, Jason Kokrak and Peter Uihlein are the other players who put their names to the suit, arguing that the PGA Tour is trying to damage their careers.

“The Tour’s conduct serves no purpose other than to cause harm to players and prevent the entry of the first significant competitive threat the Tour has faced in decades,” the lawsuit states.

“The purpose of this action is to overturn anti-competitive PGA Tour rules and practices that prevent these independent golfers from playing when and where they choose.”

The PA news agency has contacted the PGA Tour for comment.

    (PA wire)

(PA wire)

Poulter was one of three members of the DP World Tour who managed to obtain a temporary reprieve from their suspensions from the Scottish Open in July, pending the decision of their substantive appeals.

The players had also been fined £100,000 for taking part in the first LIV Golf event in June after being turned down for the required releases.

Speaking on Tuesday, former Ryder Cup captain Davis Love said PGA Tour players could choose the “nuclear option” of boycotting the events if the LIV rebels successfully challenge their suspensions.

“If the LIV guys go after and get allowed to play on the PGA Tour, the players are pretty sick of it,” Love said at a press conference ahead of the Wyndham Championship.

“We understand that we make the rules for the PGA Tour and the commissioner enforces our rules and we don’t want these guys playing and coming and picking our tournaments.

“We have all the cards in hand. We say to the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) and Washington, “No, we support the rules. We don’t want these guys playing. We don’t care what the courts say.”

The nuclear option is to say “Well, if they have to play in our events, we just won’t play”

Davis love

“The nuclear option is to say ‘Okay, if they have to play in our events, we just won’t play’.”

Being suspended by the PGA Tour means players such as Dustin Johnson, Brooks Koepka and Patrick Roseau cannot represent the United States in September’s Presidents Cup, when Love will captain the team.

“I’ve told the players I’ve spoken to who have left or are considering leaving, it’s your decision and you do what’s right for you, but understand (the) consequences,” Love added.

“I tried to talk like my dad and I probably wasn’t very good at it. I did not discuss. I said you can be Tiger Woods or you can be banned from the game, take your pick.

“But understanding the consequences, you signed up to these rules. I had to sign up before last Friday or I won’t be playing this week. I have to play 15 tournaments or I don’t have the right to vote and I don’t get my retirement money. You have rules you must follow.

“I said you are about to break a rule which is an important rule and you are going to be penalized for it.

“And Jay (Monahan, PGA Tour commissioner) has been saying this for a year and some of them got it, some of them said it wasn’t going to happen, and some of them just lied, (saying) ‘I’m not doing this, I’m not doing that’.

Love admits he was ‘completely wrong’ to say six months ago that LIV wasn’t going to happen and that Phil Mickelson would be the only player to jump ship, but added: ‘I don’t know what’s going to happen. happen from now on. but I know it’s going to be a fight and the players are more and more united against it.

Michael C. Ford