(NewsGlobal.com)- The PGA Championship, which was initially supposed to take place at Trump National Golf Course in Bedminster, New Jersey, kicked off on Thursday at Southern Hills Country Club in Tulsa, Oklahoma. And former golfing great Jack Nicklaus is among those who still believe the PGA should never have moved from Trump’s club.
The 82-year-old golfing legend was quoted in a recent article saying that while he likes PGA America CEO Seth Waugh, his decision to move the championship from Trump’s golf course was “cancel culture.”
Nicklaus said the former president “loves golf and he loves this country.” Calling Trump a “formidable figure” in golfing, Nicklaus said what Trump can contribute to the “future in golf” is going to depend “on what cancel culture will allow him to do.”
The Trump Organization and the PGA of America reached an undisclosed settlement in late December over the PGA’s January 2021 decision to pull this year’s championship from Bedminster.
Seth Waugh, who became the CEO of PGA America only four years ago, was also interviewed in the same article where he acknowledged that the decision to move the PGA Championship from Bedminster was prompted by the January 6 riot at the Capitol in 2021. He said on January 5, the PGA was going to Bedminster, “then, obviously, a lot changed.”
Waugh, who has known Donald Trump for three decades, acknowledged that there are golfers and golf fans among those who support the former president. He disputed the accusations that the PGA made a political move, arguing that the PGA got pulled “into a political place that was not our own making.”
Waugh claimed that keeping the championship at a Trump-owned golf course would have caused “existential damage to our brand.”
The PGA Championship kicked off Thursday morning without defending champion, Phil Mickelson.
Mickelson pulled out of the tournament after getting blowback for criticizing the PGA Tour in his remarks about Saudi Arabia and why he considered the Saudi-backed rival league, LIV Golf, to be a good opportunity.