Dechambeau blast Ryder Cup captain

Bryson DeChambeau blasts Ryder Cup captain Zach Johnson amid LIV Golf division

Bryson DeChambeau won his second LIV Golf event in as many months, thus prompting him to speak about the Ryder Cup after his victory.

By Jack Milko  Sep 25, 2023, 10:59am EDT  

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Bryson DeChambeau, LIV Golf
Bryson DeChambeau reacts after winning the LIV Golf Invitational – Chicago event.

Bryson DeChambeau continues to feel slighted.

After shooting an 8-under 63 Sunday, DeChambeau won the LIV Golf Chicago event by one stroke over Anirban Lahiri and Marc Leishman.

His win marks the second time in as many months that he has won a LIV tournament, with his maiden victory on the Saudi-backed tour coming at the Greenbrier in August. DeChambeau shot a 12-under 58 to claim that title.

DeChambeau Blasts Captain Johnson

DeChambeau’s recent hot stretch was not acknowledged by U.S. Ryder Cup captain Zach Johnson, which he discussed after his victory in Chicago.

“If you look at it, it would have been nice to at least just have a call,” DeChambeau said about the Ryder Cup selection process. 

“There are numerous people that I think [Johnson] should have called out here, and [us LIV golfers] didn’t get that. I understand. I get it, but we’re nothing different. We’re still competing. We’re still working super hard to be the best we possibly can be.”

Bryson DeChambeau, LIV Golf
Bryson DeChambeau celebrates his victory in Chicago with his LIV Golf teammates.

The only player from LIV Golf who will play in the Ryder Cup is Brooks Koepka, who won the 2023 PGA Championship at Oak Hill. 

Koepka was one of Johnson’s captain’s picks after barely missing the threshold of making the team automatically. 

“Brooks is obviously going to kill it for Team USA next week, and I am excited about the team, but yeah, it definitely does sting a little bit,” DeChambeau added. “But say what you want, we’re still golfers, and I think that given how I played this week, I could have definitely racked up some points for Team USA.”

DeChambeau has made two appearances in the Ryder Cup: in 2018 and 2021.

In 2018, the last time the competition was held in Europe, DeChambeau played alongside Phil Mickelson in Friday afternoon foursomes and Tiger Woods in Saturday afternoon foursomes.

Both matches ended 5 & 4, with the Europeans closing out each match on the 14th green.

DeChambeau then lost 1-Up to Alex Noren in Sunday singles, thus compiling a 0-3-0 record in his Ryder Cup debut.

Bryson DeChambeau, Ryder Cup
Bryson DeChambeau at the 2021 Ryder Cup.

Three years later, at Whistling Straits, DeChambeau fared much better when paired with Scottie Scheffler. He compiled a 2-0-1 record, which included a 3 & 1 victory over Tommy Fleetwood and Viktor Hovland in Saturday foursomes.

DeChambeau’s 3 & 2 victory over Sergio Garcia in Sunday singles gave the Americans its 14th point of the competition, setting the stage for a U.S. victory.

He played a vital role in helping Team USA re-capture the Ryder Cup in 2021, and he feels he could help the red, white, and blue win this time around, too.

“I am playing better than Winged Foot,” DeChambeau said, referencing his 2020 U.S. Openvictory. “But that’s neither here nor there. As time goes on, hopefully, I’ll be in line for it in a couple of years.”

Captain Johnson Responds

Interestingly, during his pre-Ryder Cup press conference on Monday, Johnson fielded a question regarding these comments DeChambeau made.

“We have a points system within the PGA of America, within the Ryder Cup USA,” Johnson explained. “It’s pretty evident how you garner points and which tournaments can accumulate points.”

“When it got down towards the end of the process, it was the top 20, the top 25 guys in that point system that I felt had merit and certainly should have my full attention. That’s where I was. I was basically in the top 20, top 25 guys in points when it came down to formulating this Team USA.”

Zach Johnson, Ryder Cup, Team USA
Zach Johnson at the pre-Ryder Cup press conference on Sept. 25, 2023.

Although Johnson did not mention DeChambeau directly, it sounds as if the former SMU Mustang did not fall within the captain’s top 25. 

That indirectly speaks volumes to how Johnson and the PGA of America view LIV events, which supposedly do not carry much weight.

Nevertheless, the issue with LIV Golf may change in the coming years, thanks to the PGA Tour’s pending agreement with the Saudi Public Investment Fund (PIF).

Whether LIV golfers—and DeChambeau—will have more merit to play for Team USA in 2025 remains to be seen.

But for now, DeChambeau will have to watch Johnson and company from home and hope for the best.

Jack Milko is a golf staff writer for SB Nation’s Playing Through. You can follow him on Twitter @jack_milko for more golf coverage. Be sure to check out @_PlayingThrough too.