LIV Golf’s Phil Mickelson, 3 others drop out of antitrust lawsuit against PGA Tour
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Phil Mickelson and several other golfers have dropped out of a federal antitrust lawsuit filed against the PGA Tour last month, just weeks after the six-time major winner said he was considering abandoning the legal battle.
Mickelson, Talor Gooch, Ian Poulter and Hudson Swafford filed a motion on Tuesday to be dismissed as plaintiffs in a lawsuit where LIV Golf players accused the Tour of unfairly suspending players who opted to compete in the rival Saudi-backed circuit, ESPN reported, citing court documents.
LIV Golf joined the fight late last month in an amended complaint in which four players also withdrew their names. Of the original 11 plaintiffs, only three remain: Bryson DeChambeau, Matt Jones and Peter Uihlein.
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Mickelson told reporters at the latest LIV Golf event in Chicago that it was “not necessary” for him to remain a part of the lawsuit once the rival league joined it.
“I currently still am. I don’t know what I’m really going to do. The only reason for me to stay in it is damages, which I don’t really want or need anything,” he said at the time.
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LIV Golf spokesman Jonathan Grella told ESPN in a statement Tuesday that the tour will continue to pursue the lawsuit despite the latest news.
“Nothing has changed,” Grella said. “The merits of the case–the PGA Tour's anti-competitive conduct–still stand and will be fully tested in court. And we look forward to that. LIV stands with the players whom the PGA Tour has treated so poorly, but we also recognize that to be successful, we no longer need a wide array of players to be on the suit. We have our players' backs and will press our case against the PGA Tour's anti-competitive behavior.”
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PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan has ruled out any possibility of truce between the two circuits, saying just last week that “that card is off the table.”
“Listen, I think I’ve been pretty clear on this: I don’t see it happening,” Monahan said. “When you look at where we are, and you think about words and actions, we’re currently in a lawsuit, so coming together and having conversations, to me, that card is off the table, and it has been for a long period of time.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.