Phil Mickelson: Is it necessary that there is a merger? Probably not

Mickelson, known for his interesting views, surprised many this time as well.

by Sead Dedovic
Phil Mickelson: Is it necessary that there is a merger? Probably not
© Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images Sport

The negotiations between the PGA Tour and LIV Golf are still ongoing, and it's still uncertain when this story might come to an end. Both Tours are open to negotiations and agreements, but it's clear that there are obstacles in the way of both Tours reaching a common agreement. 

Although a framework agreement was reached last June, things haven't progressed since then. 

Phil Mickelson, a golf legend and former member of the PGA Tour, commented on the PGA Tour and LIV Golf. Mickelson, who hasn't been a favorite person for golf fans since joining LIV Golf, spoke to Bloomberg, emphasizing that he's not sure if a merger is necessary at this time. The primary concern for him is that both sides don't hold animosity towards each other, which doesn't seem like a realistic option if a merger doesn't happen

 "Is it necessary that there is a merger? Probably not," he told Bloomberg.

"But it would be a good thing if there was not any hostility." Mickelson said.

Phil Mickelson
Phil Mickelson© Asanka Ratnayake / Getty Images Sport

The 54-year-old American doesn't want to be negatively focused, as he intends to let go of everything that has happened so far. Despite frequent criticism and media pressure, Phil is ready to open a new chapter, forget disagreements, and wish the PGA Tour well. He believes the same approach should be taken on the other Tour if they truly want golf to move in the right direction. If a merger becomes a reality, it's another reason why golfers from both sides, leaders, and fans must forget past events.

"I need to let that stuff go. I need to let go of all of those experiences I have had in the past that were less than positive. I need to let go of my hostilities, and we all do for the better of the game." - Mickelson continued.

His statements since the creation of LIV Golf and certain tournaments haven't exactly produced positive reactions. Mickelson, who was part of the PGA Tour for years and made a name for himself playing on this Tour, has become one of the biggest critics of this competition. 

As early as November 2022, ahead of the LIV tournament, he emphasized the need to find the right side and choose what's best for himself. Phil believed even then that he was on the right side, and the evolution of the golf scene is likely one of the reasons why Mickelson chose LIV Golf.

“I think going forward you have to pick a side. You have to pick what side do you think is going to be successful,” Mickelson said.

“I firmly believe that I’m on the winning side of how things are going to evolve and shape in the coming years for professional golf.”

The golfer noticed that LIV Golf was progressing day by day and even back then emphasized that the PGA Tour was declining, expressing satisfaction with his position. He also confirmed happiness because LIV Golf leaders listen to advice, suggestions, and recommendations, and the inclusion of every individual in Tour activities is a major reason why Mickelson has developed sympathies towards LIV Golf. 

The situation in the world of golf then and now

After two years, much has changed. It's difficult to give a definitive answer on whether LIV Golf has advanced so much, but a trend of progress was felt. On the other hand, the PGA Tour continues to attract attention, with big names playing there, and young talents emerging year after year who are yet to make their mark on this Tour. 

Mickelson's predictions are still not absolute truth, but the future may reveal their potential accuracy. 

Looking at the current situation, the PGA Tour remains dominant, boasting many quality names. Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy are certainly irreplaceable figures whose voices and perspectives play a crucial role in the golf world. Mickelson is evolving his views in hopes that golf can return to what it once was. The question remains whether the situation will revert to how it used to be.
Most golf fans are still on the side of the PGA Tour, especially the older ones, who started following this sport a long time ago when the PGA Tour was the main Tour and was the only Tour. It was expected over the years that there could be changes and innovations in the golf scene, but these changes were not what the fans wanted.

Although LIV leaders often emphasize that their goal is to bring changes to the golf scene, to innovate and present something new, golf fans are not open to that, considering that golf is a traditional game that should not be based on such trends.

Of course, opinions are different, but judging by social media and fans' reactions, it seems that such opinions are predominant.

Phil Mickelson