Brooks Koepka explains the beginning of beef with Bryson DeChambeau forward of the 2021 2021 British Open
Another big tournament, another coming to terms with the feud between Brooks Koepka and Bryson DeChambeau.
The two golfers, who are sixth (DeChambeau) and eighth (Koepka) worldwide, were embroiled in a feud that dates back to 2019. The feud famously began with problems Koepka had with DeChambeau’s slow game, however, before the 2021 British Open, Koepka explained why the public argument has continued for so long.
Koepka said it all came down to a deal they struck at the 2019 Northern Trust tournament at Liberty National in Jersey City, NJ
“We had a conversation at Liberty and he broke his end of the deal and I didn’t like that, so I’m going to do my recordings,” Koepka said, according to ESPN’s Bob Harig.
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And what was the conversation about?
“He didn’t like that I mentioned his name on slow play, so we talked in the locker room,” said Koepka. “And then we probably said something else in the press conference, but didn’t mention his name in it, and he went to … [Koepka’s caddie] Ricky [Elliott]said something. It was, ‘You tell your husband if he has something to say, tell me.’ I found that ironic because he went straight to Ricky. Ricky told me that when I came out, hit a couple of putts and then went straight to him, we had a chat.
“We both agreed that we should be mutually exclusive and not mention each other, just let it die off, not mention each other’s names, just move on. So he decided that I think it was him that little whatever, play video games online? [on Twitch, in which he made light of Koepka appearing in ESPN’s The Body Issue] or whatever and brought up my name and said a few things so it’s fair game now. “
Koepka has certainly gotten some shots lately. He shot DeChambeau in front of “The Match 4” and made fun of him even after his breakup with longtime caddy Tim Tucker.
DeChambeau has also got under the skin of Koepka, notably interrupting a Koepka interview at the PGA Championship. He insists he doesn’t know what deal he broke with Koepka, however, and he’s a bit confused as to why their chirping and banter didn’t start until a few years after the original feud began.
“He can say what he wants,” said DeChambeau. “I think he said something at Liberty National that he didn’t support. I don’t know what he’s talking about in that regard. Maybe that’s me. Maybe I didn’t. I really don’t remember anything about that. We just had a conversation that I really don’t know what happened because we haven’t really chatted back and forth until now, so it’s like this is happening now.
“Besides, I’m only here to play golf and focus on it. If we want to keep joking back and forth, of course being respectful and keeping boundaries where they are not exceeded, yes, I think it’s fun and a good environment for golfers. ”
The DeChambeau-Koepka feud has definitely piqued the interest of golf fans, and many are hoping to get them together at some major tournament at some point. We didn’t see that at the US Open – the possibility was reportedly being considered by the USGA but discarded – but if both play well at The Open Championship they might play together at Royal St George’s over the weekend.
DeChambeau wants to win his second major at the British Open, while Koepka wants to win his fifth place and complete a third stage of the career grand slam.