Gretzky on DJ absence: 'There are bumps in the road'

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Dustin Johnson is No. 30 in the FedEx Cup standings, but he’s not in the field at this week’s Tour Championship, the continuation of a self-imposed leave of absence.

Speaking Wednesday on Canada’s Sportsnet 590 The Fan, Wayne Gretzky, Johnson’s future father-in-law, expressed support for Johnson, who stepped away from the game in July because of “personal challenges.”

“Obviously life isn’t perfect, and he went through a tough time,” Gretzky said on the radio show. “As he said to me, ‘It’s going to make me a better person and more importantly, a more responsible person. Through that it’s going to make me a better athlete and a better golfer.' 

“In life, unfortunately, sometimes we forget that even athletes are human. There are bumps in the road. Most importantly, he’s a wonderful person with a good heart, and we care about him. He’s our future son-in-law, and we love him dearly.

“So yeah, it’s been a tough time, but when you go through tough times as a family that’s when you’ve got to stick together the most.”

Johnson and Paulina Gretzky got engaged last August.