During his US Open press conference, the defending champion played down his rivalry with Brooks Koepka

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Bryson DeChambeau: Brooks Koepka Rivalry “Great Banter”

Wearing a thinly veiled smile, Bryson DeChambeau brushed off talk of his rivalry with Brooks Koepka, labelling it as nothing more than “great banter” during his US Open press conference.

The pair’s ongoing feud, if it can even be called that, has continued to gather momentum in the wake of Koepka’s leaked PGA Championship interview clip, in which he made no attempt to hide his disdain for this week’s defending champ.

And that led to a number of fans yelling “Brooksy” while Bryson played in the PGA Tour’s Memorial Tournament, something that reportedly resulted in some being escorted off property. 

But, if we are to take DeChambeau at his word, he is loving the back-and-forth with Koepka and the spectators, so long as it doesn’t cross the line.

“I think it’s fun. There’s a point where it’s great banter,” the ‘Golfing Scientist’ told reporters. “I personally love it.

“For me, I’m always going to be trying to play my game and not really worry too much about what other people are doing, but I think there are just times where, if it gets outside the scope of just integrity and honour, yeah, that can get a little interesting.

“At the same point in time, all of it’s been good fun. Shoot, to be honest, people saying Brooksy’s name out there, I love it. I think it’s hilarious.”

Even before addressing members of the media at Torrey Pines, things took another turn as talk swirled that the defending champion had “declined” an opportunity to break with tradition and play alongside Koepka for the opening two rounds. 

However, that is something DeChambeau denied and instead suggested he hopes the pair cross paths this weekend at Torrey Pines as it would be “great for the game.”

Related: US Open tee times

“I would be okay with that [playing with Brooks in rounds one and two], but there was never really anything that went through me,” DeChambeau half-heartedly clarified.

“I hope on the weekend we can play against each other and compete. I think it would be fun and would be great for the game.”

Whether or not it would be either of those things is seriously up for debate, but we’re going to find out sooner or later. 

It’s certainly got people talking and one person who is not enjoying all the attention it has been receiving is the American Ryder Cup captain Steve Stricker. 

Speaking recently, the 54-year-old urged the two to “put their differences aside” in time for the showdown at Whistling Straits.

However, due to the “different atmosphere” of team golf, DeChambeau doesn’t foresee there being any problems come September.

“I personally think, when we’re on a team, we’re going to be on a team, and it’s going to be a different atmosphere.

“We’re players competing individually on an individual basis out here, and I think we banter back and forth in good fun, but when it comes time to play on a team, it will be different.”

Related: Brooks – “I don’t care who I’m paired with”