Fred Couples Slams LIV Golfers and Phil Mickelson, Praises Will Zalatoris for Rejecting $130 Million Offer

Golf legend Fred Couples has revealed that rising star Will Zalatoris rejected a nine-figure offer to join LIV Golf, worth a whopping $130 million (£110m).[0] Couples was speaking at the PGA Tour Champions breakfast ahead of the Hoag Classic in Newport Beach, where he currently resides.[1]

Couples said: “Money is zero object [for LIV]. I give Will a lot of credit; he wants [to stay with] the PGA Tour.”[2] He went on to criticise the players who have joined the league, saying: “Just go to the LIV Tour, but stop blasting something I’ve been a part of for 42 years. That’s my problem with (LIV golfers). They’re all bashing the PGA Tour, and that affects me a little bit.”[3]

The 63-year-old also had a few choice words for Phil Mickelson, calling him a “nutbag,” but still believes he's one of the 10 best golfers ever and “still” likes him.[4] Couples also mentioned Cameron Smith, without actually saying his name, and admonished him for having said, “Now I can have birthdays and go to the weddings of my mates.”[5]

Finally, Couples conveyed his lack of knowledge of the LIV Tour, saying: “I don’t know anything about the LIV Tour, except they overpay all of them.”[6] It is clear that Couples is not a fan of the Saudi-backed tour, but he did understand why players are tempted by the money.

0. “Reports suggest Will Zalatoris turned down unreal offer from LIV Golf” Sportskeeda, 16 Mar. 2023,

1. “Garcia Called A ‘Clown' And Mickelson A ‘Nutbag' As Couples Hits Out At LIV Golf” Golf Monthly, 16 Mar. 2023,

2. “US Open runner-up with £12m career earnings ‘turned down' huge £110m offer to join LIV” The Mirror, 17 Mar. 2023,

3. “Fred Couples absolutely blasts LIV Golf” The Comeback, 16 Mar. 2023,

4. “Fred Couples calls Phil Mickelson a ‘nutbag' and Sergio Garcia a ‘clown' in speech for the ages” msnNOW, 16 Mar. 2023,

5. “Fred Couples Still Taking Shots at a LIV Golfers, Calls Phil Mickelson a ‘Nutbag'” The Big Lead, 16 Mar. 2023,

6. “LIV Golf offered $130 MILLION to Will Zalatoris, Fred Couple says” Daily Mail, 17 Mar. 2023,