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Jack Nicklaus implied it’s not really all that hard to figure out why the PGA Tour pulled its championship out of New Jersey in favor of Tulsa, Oklahoma.
It’s because Donald Trump owns the course in New Jersey.
So Nicklaus felt compelled to call out PGA CEO Seth Waugh, who made the decision to move the event in January.
Honorary starter Jack Nicklaus reacts after hitting on the first tee to start the first round of the Masters golf tournament Thursday, Nov. 12, 2020, in Augusta, Ga. (Curtis Compton/Atlanta Journal-Constitution via AP)
“I like Seth Waugh,” Nicklaus told Fire Pit Collective. “Seth didn’t need this job. He took the job because he thought he could give the PGA of America some good guidance.
President Donald Trump in Tel Aviv May 22, 2017 (AP Photo)
“But this move is cancel culture. Donald Trump may be a lot of things, but he loves golf, and he loves this country. He’s a student of the game and a formidable figure in the game. What he does in the future in golf will depend on what the cancel culture will allow him to do.”
Patrons watch as Jack Nicklaus celebrates his hole-in-one on the fourth hole during the Par 3 Contest prior to the start of the 2015 Masters Tournament at Augusta National Golf Club on April 8, 2015 in Augusta, Georgia. (David Cannon/Getty Images)
Nicklaus has won 18 majors, the most in history. He also endorsed Trump ahead of the 2020 election.
Waugh did reference the Capitol riots when announcing the move on Jan. 18.
“We find ourselves in a political situation, not of our making,’’ Waugh said. “We’re fiduciaries for our members, for the game, for our mission, and for our brand. And how do we best protect that? Our feeling was given the tragic events of Wednesday that we could no longer hold it at Bedminster. The damage could have been irreparable. The only real course of action was to leave.”
So as it stands, the PGA Championship tees off Thursday in … yes … Tulsa.