Matt Kuchar has long been one of the sneaky funniest guys on the PGA Tour. Behind his mismatched wardrobe and his constant smile, Kuchar is a menace when it comes to giving his fellow Tour pros grief.
One of Kuchar’s favorite targets is Phil Mickelson, not only because Phil likes to give it out so much, but because the 5-time major champion gives Kuchar a lot of ammo. During the winning press conference at the Presidents Cup on Sunday, Kuchar took the opportunity to needle Mickelson publicly about his failure to make it to the Tour Championship, which all 11 other members of the U.S. Team accomplished.
This isn’t the first time Kuchar has gotten Phil good. Perhaps the best story of just how pointed Kuchar’s needle gets with Mickelson came at the Memorial last year when Phil was embroiled on the outskirts of an insider trading scandal.
To get a sense for why Kuchar is such a maestro with the needle, drift back to the Memorial Tournament in June. A showcase event by itself, it would be the first appearance for Mickelson since it became public that he had settled an “insider trading” mess by repaying close to $1 million to the Securities and Exchange Commission for profits made by buying and selling Dean Foods stock.
When Mickelson saw that he would be paired Thursday and Friday with Kuchar, he knew it would be bad. “Give it to me now,” Mickelson said when he saw Kuchar on Tuesday, but the guy with the perpetual smile declined. Because he had a captive audience for two days, Kuchar said he was going to drag it out and have more fun.
The next day, Kuchar sauntered into the lunch room, found Mickelson and sat down. Big smile, of course. Then, he stretched so that Mickelson could see what was on his shirt — a freshly made-up Dean Foods logo.
“I was sitting right there,” Woodland said. “I was crying laughing.”
Kuchar explained to Mickelson that somehow “a million dollars” had become available, so Dean Foods had signed him to an endorsement deal. Michael Spinks lasted longer against Mike Tyson.
“That was some good fun, yes,” Kuchar said. “I enjoy Phil. Phil is so much fun to have fun with, to have games with. He takes it pretty well.”
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