Jim Nantz on Phil Mickelson’s controversy: ‘It won’t be forever’

Jim Nantz doesn’t think Phil Mickelson’s recent feuds will last with him forever.

Nantz and six-time major winner Nick Faldo claim the PGA Championship next weekend from Southern Hills in Tulsa, Oklahoma, for CBS, and appeared at the network’s media conference Wednesday ahead of this year’s second major.

Mickelson, who won the PGA Championship last year at the age of 50 to become golf’s oldest major champion, has been in isolation in recent months after comments he made criticizing the PGA Tour and downplaying human rights concerns in Saudi Arabia regarding participation in a competitor For the golf league supported by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Nantz and Faldo were asked by The Post if Mickelson, who is currently on the field for the 2022 PGA Championship, should compete in the main tournament next week.

It looks like Phil Mickelson is returning to the PGA Championship to defend his title in 2021.
Getty Images

“A completely personal decision for Phil,” Nantz said. I won’t give any general advice, but it will come back. Sometimes we get caught up in a story hurricane and think it will last forever. It won’t be forever. will be back.

“Of course, his age is a factor in how competitive he is at a high level, but that’s what they said a year ago. He will be back. He will play. He has a lot of fans there. This is a tolerant nation. There are a million examples of people who somehow managed to find their way back to Summit again. I fully expect that he will.”

Earlier in the call, Nantes was asked what advice he would give Mickelson.

Jim Nantz believes Phil Mickelson's recent struggles won't haunt him forever.
Jim Nantz believes Phil Mickelson’s recent struggles won’t haunt him forever.
PGA Tour via Getty Images

The announcer replied, “I will keep this matter private.” “I’ve already reached out to him and I don’t feel like this is something I share with anyone else, so I’ll leave it at that.”

When asked if Mickelson should play in the tournament, Faldo replied, “I think he loves to play. He’s defending one of the most historic majors we’ve ever seen. Jim and I were calling this last year and it showed us what we saw.”

“We saw the tiger come back to take 15th place [major at the Masters in 2019] And we saw Phil win at 50. Obviously, that’s Phil’s decision. A lot has happened, and I think it will be a very difficult decision. I hope he knows what he wants to do now.”

Mickelson saw a particularly turbulent February. The PGA Tour was accused of “hateful greed” in the amount of money it (not) distributes to golfers. Two weeks later, he played down the human rights concerns associated with competing in the Saudi Golf League.

“She’s a scary mother [expletive] Michelson said to author Alan Shipnock. We know they were killed [Washington Post reporter Jamal] Khashoggi has an appalling human rights record. They execute people there for being gay. Knowing all this, why am I even thinking about it? Because this is a once in a lifetime opportunity to reshape how the PGA Tour works.”

Earlier on the call, Faldo spoke of the massive mental challenge Mickelson faces in the major competition after the events of the past several months.

Phil Mickelson in February 2022
Phil Mickelson in Saudi Arabia in February.
Getty Images

“If there is, great, he is clearly defending this historic win. Personally I think it’s an incredible mental challenge to come back and play after what he put himself in – that simple. I don’t think it’s as easy as getting back on the bike and riding a championship golf and going and playing.

“The tension is going to be huge, so I don’t know if he’ll be mentally ready for that.”

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