Billy Horschel: Some LIV players are ‘brainwashed’; Judge’s ruling was ‘small vindication’
Several players, from Rory McIlroy to Justin Thomas, offered their reactions to Tuesday’s court ruling that denied temporary restraining orders for three LIV Golf players – Talor Gooch, Hudson Swafford and Matt Jones – wishing to compete in the FedExCup Playoffs.
The district judge’s decision upheld the Tour’s suspension of Gooch, Swafford and Jones, which prohibits the trio, and other former members who have signed with LIV or teed it up in a LIV event, from playing Tour-sanctioned events, including the three-event postseason that begins this week in Memphis.
Said McIlroy on Wednesday from TPC Southwind: “From my vantage point, common sense prevailed, and I thought it was the right decision.”
And Thomas: “I wasn’t super one way or the other, I just was worried about myself. Obviously, as a player on the PGA Tour and the ruling going in favor of the PGA Tour, I’m in favor of that.”
And Will Zalatoris: “Once the judge denied the TRO, we were all pretty relieved. … One thing that I really liked that Mr. Elliott, who’s representing us, said is part of the TRO is [the LIV players] wanted to recoup some of their financial losses, and Mr. Elliott said, well, they made their decision and they’ve made more money in the past three months than they’ve made in their entire careers.”
No response, though, stood out more than Billy Horschel’s.
“I said to some of the guys personally, I think they’ve been brainwashed by the way they feel so adamant that they’re going to be back out on the PGA Tour,” Horschel told Golf Channel’s Todd Lewis. “I’ve had some of them tell me … ‘I’ll see you Tour again,’ and I say, ‘No, you won’t.’ A couple of them are pretty brainwashed in the way they’re thinking and what they’ve been told.”
Horschel continued: “I just feel, as do a lot of members of the PGA Tour and a lot of employees of the PGA Tour, a small vindication at this point because it’s not over, but everything that’s been done is correct, and we [the Tour] are within our own right to do what they’ve done.”