Brooks Koepka Expresses “Regret” After Making Controversial Marks to His Opponents

After making somewhat inflammatory remarks following his third round at the PGA Championship Saturday, Brooks Koepka would like to walk-back on certain aspects of his statement. 

Koepka was heading into the final round two shots off the lead of Dustin Johnson, and within reach of three straight PGA Championships, with Hagen Anderson and Peter Thomas the only golfers to have successfully won three straight majors since 1882. But he drew steep criticism for his harsh words Saturday afternoon, in which he seemingly downplayed Johnson’s career accomplishments and seemed to target other players at the top of the leaderboard. 

“A lot of guys on the leaderboard, I don’t think have won (a major), I guess DJ has only won one. I don’t know a lot of the other guys up there,” Koepka said.

While some may have found Koepka’s comments to be invigorating, an offering of intriguing entertainment to further the hype around the tournament, others thought he was taking an unessential jab at Johnson and the other players in contention, including eventual champion Collin Morikawa. His comments became the focus of segments on SportsCenter and Golf Channel, with Rory McIlroy even stating that he was “taken aback a bit.”

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In an interview with Golfweek published Wednesday, Koepka shared that he now regrets some of his word choice from when he made the comment.   

“To be honest, when I’m looking at a leaderboard I’m never looking at who is behind me or tied with me. I only look ahead,” Koepka said. “I just genuinely didn’t know the guys at 8 and 7 (under). That part I regret and I wish I had used different words because I didn’t pay enough attention to who was under Dustin, because he was my main focus.”

His efforts to overtake the lead quickly failed come Sunday, with Koepka shooting a final-round score of 74, dropping him to a T-29 finished. 

“If you’re going to do that then you’ve got to back it up, and last week I didn’t back it up,” Koepka said. “I’m OK with the repercussions of that. I’ve got thick skin. I can handle it.”

As of Thursday, Brooks is +2 at the Wyndham Championship, 10 back from the lead, an underwhelming rebound from last week’s fiasco. 

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