Paul Casey and the hidden reasons why he joined LIV Golf: Casey reveals the truth

"This is something I have not talked about but people know it on LIV and the DP World Tour, PGA Tour as well,"

by Sead Dedovic
Paul Casey and the hidden reasons why he joined LIV Golf: Casey reveals the truth
© Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images Sport

Paul Casey surprised many when he joined the LIV Golf in 2022, despite previously criticizing this Tour. During an appearance on the 'Are You Not Entertained' podcast, Casey revealed the true reasons behind his decision. Namely, his caddy, Johnny McLaren, had a brain tumor that was removed in April 2023. Casey confirmed that they have a great relationship, and it is hard to imagine one without the other. His caddie was going through stressful and difficult moments then, considering he was battling a serious illness. He had to take care of his health.

"This is something I have not talked about but people know it on LIV and the DP World Tour, PGA Tour as well," -Casey said, as quoted by Express.

"You know my dear caddie, Johnny McLaren? Johnny 'Long Socks' McLaren as he's affectionately known. Anybody who wonders what that means just has to look up a picture of Johnny and they'll see a 50-year-old guy wearing his Jordan 1s and his big long socks lolloping around the golf course.

Johnny and I have been best mates and a team for the last eight years. Well, Johnny had a brain tumour removed last April, so when you're never quite sure what is going on in peoples' lives, there's a lot. That is something Johnny and I spoke about and that is another reason why we went to LIV because we couldn't keep doing what we were doing."

COVID protocols were a cause for concern and they could no longer tolerate such protocols, especially Johnny due to his health condition. Being confined to a hotel for a long period is not conducive to someone with such an illness. These were crucial moments that led Casey to make his decision.

"We were throwing out false positives on our way to Japan where you were going to get locked in your hotel room for 10 days. We both hit a breaking point and said we can't do this anymore. Knowing Johnny's health issues at the time and what we were dealing with, that's a little bit more insight into why I'm doing what I'm doing."- he continued.

Casey was generally dissatisfied with the situation in the golf scene. The PGA Tour couldn't offer players the same conditions as before. Additionally, many golfers decided to sign with LIV Golf and take the 'unpopular' path. Jay Monahan, the PGA Tour commissioner, sparked anger among many, including Casey, who believes that Monahan should have been better balanced in those moments. If Monahan had a different stance and approach, he could have likely retained several stars on the Tour. 

Casey emphasizes that while the players are responsible, there must also be responsibility on the PGA Tour leaders who did not handle the arrival of LIV Golf in an ideal manner. Fans and golfers expressed common dissatisfaction, especially after the merger about which they were not previously informed.

"We take the blame for this, as players, but I'm not sure the blame rests squarely on our shoulders. For the longest time, we've just wanted to play golf. That's it."- he concluded.

Paul Casey talks about LIV Golf and his decision

Casey explains that he was experiencing burnout and exhaustion after playing golf professionally for a long time, especially considering the challenges brought by COVID-19 and his various roles on different tours. COVID-19 was a huge challenge for everyone, not just for golf. It was a period that required adaptation, which wasn't easy for sports organizations' leaders and athletes either.

Paul Casey
Paul Casey© Lintao Zhang/Getty Images Sport

The arrival of LIV Golf has changed many things in the golf scene. Conflicts have become increasingly frequent, and along with that, a lot of information has emerged. PGA Tour leaders promised that the situation would improve and that they would address it adequately, but the financial power of LIV Golf is so strong that they couldn't withstand this Tour supported by PIF. Casey carefully analyzed the situation and it seems that he has lost a sense of belonging to the PGA Tour.

Casey felt disheartened and generally wasn't happy with the state of the game. He expressed a desire to explore something new, which led him to join LIV Golf. Despite the lengthy explanation, he emphasizes that he is now extremely satisfied playing on the LIV Golf tour.

Casey got used to playing in this competition. After his departure, a trend emerged where many other golfers followed the same path. The latest departure in the series, that of Jon Rahm, has caused the most reactions and surprises. The Spaniard decided to join LIV Golf despite previously stating that he had no such intentions.

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