Phil Mickelson Explains Why He's Considering Backing Out Of LIV Lawsuit

The six-time Major winner stated that he is considering dropping out of the antitrust lawsuit

Mickelson walks on the putting green, in front of an LIV Golf banner
(Image credit: Getty Images)

LIV Golf's fifth event gets underway in Chicago this week and, in the run-up to the tournament, one of its biggest and recognized names has revealed some news in the form of the series' antitrust lawsuit against the PGA Tour.

Phil Mickelson, who only two weeks ago told Sports Illustrated that he has "moved on" from the PGA Tour, has now announced that he is considering dropping out of the antitrust lawsuit "now that LIV is involved."

Greg Norman during the Boston LIV Golf Invitational Series tournament

LIV Golf CEO, Greg Norman, at LIV Golf Boston back in late August

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Speaking at LIV Golf Invitational Series Chicago, the 52-year-old told “Now that LIV is involved, it’s not necessary for me to be involved. I currently still am. I don’t know what I’m going to do, really.

“The only reason for me to stay in is (monetary) damages, which I don’t really want or need anything. I do think it’s important that the players have the right to play when and where they want, when and where they qualify for. And now that LIV is a part of it, that will be accomplished if and when they win.’’

Back in early August, 11 PGA Tour defectors filed the lawsuit - including Mickelson and Bryson DeChambeau. That number has since dropped after Carlos Ortiz, Pat Perez, Abraham Ancer and Jason Kokrak withdrew from proceedings, with LIV Golf themselves joining the lawsuit over a fortnight ago.

Pat Perez and Jason Kokrak walk down the fairway in purple shirts

Perez and Kokrak are amongst the names who have withdrawn from the antitrust lawsuit

(Image credit: Getty Images)

The former members are challenging their suspension from the PGA Tour in light of their playing in the Saudi-backed series. The motion states: "The Tour's conduct serves no purpose other than to cause harm to players and foreclose the entry of the first meaningful competitive threat the Tour has faced in decades."

So far, there have been a number of cases that have gone to court. Before the Scottish Open, LIV players were set to be banned, but Branden Grace, Ian Poulter, Justin Harding and Adrian Otaegui had their bans "temporarily stayed," resulting in them featuring at The Renaissance Club. 

However, the same result did not occur for PGA Tour players Talor Gooch, Matt Jones and Hudson Swafford surrounding the FedEx Cup. The three LIV Golf players had filed a temporary restraining order (TRO) to allow them to play in the FedEx Cup Playoffs.

Judge Beth Labson Freeman though, ruled that the trio felt "no irreparable harm" and were consequently denied a temporary restraining order. As a result, they were not permitted to play in the lucrative Playoffs that was eventually won by Rory McIlroy.

Matt Cradock
Staff Writer

Matt joined Golf Monthly in February 2021 covering weekend news, before also transitioning to equipment and testing. After freelancing for Golf Monthly and The PGA for 18 months, he was offered a full-time position at the company in October 2022 and continues to cover weekend news and social media, as well as help look after Golf Monthly’s many buyers’ guides and equipment reviews.

Taking up the game when he was just seven years of age, Matt made it into his county squad just a year later and continues to play the game at a high standard, with a handicap of around 2-4. To date, his best round came in 2016, where he shot a six-under-par 66 having been seven-under through nine holes. He currently plays at Witney Lakes in Oxfordshire and his favourite player is Rory McIlroy, despite nearly being struck by his second shot at the 17th during the 2015 BMW PGA Championship.

Matt’s current What’s In The Bag?

Driver: Honma TW747, 8.75°

Fairway Wood: TaylorMade Rocketballz Stage 2, 15°, 19°

Hybrid: Adams Super Hybrid, 22°

Irons: Mizuno MP54, 5-PW

Wedges: Cleveland 588 RTX 2.0 Tour Satin, 50°, 56°, 60°

Putter: Cleveland TFI 2135 Satin Cero

Ball: Titleist Pro V1x