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LIV Golf's Patrick Reed Suing Golf Channel's Brandel Chamblee for Defamation

Tim Daniels@@TimDanielsBRFeatured Columnist IVAugust 17, 2022

Patrick Reed (ROSLAN RAHMAN/AFP via Getty Images)

LIV Golf's Patrick Reed has filed a defamation lawsuit against the Golf Channel and analyst Brandel Chamblee for "misreporting information with falsity and/or reckless disregard of the truth."

Reed alleged in Tuesday's filing that the Golf Channel, Chamblee and PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan conspired against him for the past nine years in an effort to "destroy his reputation, create hate and a hostile work environment for him," per Reuters (via ESPN).

The lawsuit states Reed's lawyer sent a cease-and-desist letter to Chamblee in January 2020 demanding that he stop suggesting the golfer cheated in a tournament. Reed received two penalty strokes in the 2019 Hero World Challenge one month earlier for improving his lie in a bunker, which he denied was done on purpose.

This January, Joel Beall of Golf Digest noted Reed has faced cheating allegations dating back to his college career, but he previously told the outlet it wasn't a fair label.

"Being called a cheater. That's so far from the truth," he said in 2021. "No athlete, no golfer who works to make it to the highest level is a cheater."

Reed, whose biggest career win came at the 2018 Masters, left the PGA Tour to join LIV Golf in June. He was indefinitely suspended from the tour, as were other golfers who appeared in the rival organization's events.

"Despite his exceptional world-class golfing achievements, in June of 2022, Mr. Reed was constructively terminated as a member of the PGA Tour, as a result of threats made and action taken by its Commissioner Jay Monahan and his PGA Tour, and signed with LIV Golf," the lawsuit reads, per Reuters.

Reed is seeking $750 million in damages, according to the Guardian.

On Aug. 3, Phil Mickelson and Bryson DeChambeau headlined a group of 11 LIV Golf players who filed an antitrust lawsuit against the PGA Tour.

The U.S. Justice Department began looking into whether the tour has made any antitrust violations in regards to LIV Golf in July, per CNN's Wayne Sterling.

Amid the legal battles, Tiger Woods held a meeting Tuesday night to rally support for the PGA Tour in an effort to curb defections to LIV, which is financially backed by Saudi Arabia and is offering lucrative guaranteed contracts to make the jump.

"It was about all the top players getting on the same page," a golfer who attended the meeting told ESPN's Mark Schlabach. "It was a good meeting."

The PGA Tour playoffs continue with the BMW Championship beginning Thursday, while the next LIV tournament is scheduled to tee off Sept. 2 in Boston.

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