Sergio Garcia says he’s disappointed in fellow Masters champion Fred Couples, who last week launched a few barbs at Garcia and other members of LIV Golf.
Couples, speaking prior to the PGA Tour Champions’ Hoag Classic in Newport Beach, California, included Garcia in reference to being annoyed by “all these other clowns” while also calling Phil Mickelson a “nutbag.”
“It's what it is,” Garcia told Sports Illustrated on Friday at the LIV event in Tucson, Arizona. “It's disappointing because I don't know where he's going with this. But it's Freddy so he can say whatever he wants and then we can say whatever we want. I think at the end of the day his life is his life and my life in this case is my life. So, I don't think he should comment on what me or any of these other guys should have done because we didn't tell him what he had to do.”
Mickelson was also given a chance by SI to respond to Couples, who also said of the six-time major champ, “If you’re willing to give Phil Mickelson $200 million at age 53 to shoot 74 and 75, God bless you.”
“We've been friends for a lot of years,” Mickelson said. “That's all I’ll really say.”
Mickelson, who skipped last year’s Masters festivities, is expected to be back in a few weeks at Augusta National, where he, Sergio Garcia and a handful of other past green-jacket winners who have since joined LIV will join Couples in attending the Champions Dinner, hosted by Scottie Scheffler on the Tuesday night prior to the tournament.
Though Scheffler joked to Bubba Watson, whom he ran into while on vacation late last year, that he’d put Watson at a separate table, the current world No. 1 isn’t expecting any drama.
“Gathering all those guys together in a room, I mean, it should be a lot of fun,” Scheffler said. “It’s an historic group of people, Masters champions, and I’m sure that we’ll all put our personal opinions aside and just have a good night and just kind of enjoy what the night really is.”
Garcia was asked about potential awkwardness.
“I don't know,” Garcia said. “You'll have to ask whoever is going to feel awkward. I'm going to feel fine. I don't have any problems with anyone, and I try not to make a big deal out of it. I'm going to be there because I earned it, because I deserve it, and I'm going to enjoy it. I hope the rest of the guys do the same.”