Brooks Koepka is one of the most honest athletes you’ll ever come across. Sometimes, his honesty can get him in trouble.
Not that Koepka cares.
The Ryder Cup is just around the corner — September 24-26 — after being delayed a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The U.S. roster was finalized last week, with team captain Steve Stricker selecting Tony Finau, Xander Schauffele, Jordan Spieth, Harris English, Daniel Berger, and Scottie Scheffler.
They’ll join Koepka, Collin Morikawa, Patrick Cantlay, Dustin Johnson, Justin Thomas, Bryson DeChambeau, all of which automatically qualified for the Ryder Cup.
Koepka is the only question mark as he recovers from a wrist injury suffered at the Tour Championship three weeks ago, though he says he’s “good to go.” He was the only player not to attend a practice session earlier this week at Whistling Straits.
But that doesn’t mean Brooks has kept his name out of the news.
In an exclusive interview with Golf Digest earlier this week, Koepka opened up on a few topics, one of which was the Ryder Cup.
“It’s tough,” Koepka said when asked about the dynamic at the Ryder Cup. “There are times where I’m like, I won my match. I did my job. What do you want from me? I know how to take responsibility for the shots I hit every week. Now, somebody else hit a bad shot and left me in a bad spot, and I know this hole is a loss. That’s new, and you have to change the way you think about things. You go from an individual sport all the time to a team sport one week a year.”
“It’s so far from my normal routine. I can barely see my [personal] team. It’s hard to even go to the gym. At the Presidents Cup in New York, we had to go to the gym at 5 a.m. to get it in. We went to the Equinox, and it was me, Dustin and Tiger, and we come back and go to a team meeting. Under regular conditions, I take naps a lot. I might take an hour, hour-and-a-half nap, or just chill on the couch and watch “SportsCenter,” before rounds, after rounds, whatever. There’s no time to do that at the Ryder Cup. There’s no time to decompress.”
The comment did not sit well with 2008 U.S. Ryder Cup captain Paul Azinger.
“Brooks, when I just read that article, I’m not sure he loves the Ryder Cup that much,” Azinger said. “If he doesn’t love it, he should relinquish his spot and get people there who do love the Ryder Cup. Not everybody embraces it, but if you don’t love it and you’re not sold out, then I think Brooks should — especially being hurt, should consider whether or not he really wants to be there.”
Azinger also mentioned the dynamic between Koepka and Ryder Cup teammate Bryson DeChambeau, two players who have made their dislike for each other well known.
“And if you add the Bryson [DeChambeau] dynamic to that, that would be an even easier decision for him,” Azinger said. “Look, Brooks is one of the most honest, candid guys and if he is blatantly honest with himself and if he doesn’t want to be there, he should come out and say it,” Azinger said.
The U.S. team is looking to bounce back after losing the 2018 Ryder Cup to the European squad at Le Golf National in France. The Europeans have won nine of the last 12 events.
Joe Morgan is the Sports Reporter for The Daily Wire. Most recently, Morgan covered the Clippers, Lakers, and the NBA for Sporting News. Send your sports questions to email@example.com.
The views expressed in this piece are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent those of The Daily Wire.
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