The Brooks Koepka-Brandel Chamblee feud took another turn on Saturday after Koepka posted a picture of Chamblee with a clown nose to his Twitter account.
What led the three-time major champion to wade into a Twitter beef? Another perceived slight at the hands of Chamblee, an analyst for Golf Channel.
On the latest episode of his podcast with Jaime Diaz, Chamblee said that only Dustin Johnson and Rory McIlroy could challenge Tiger Woods as the best golfer in the world.
“In the aggregate, you’d have Dustin and Rory who are the likely two who could hang with [Tiger],” Chamblee said. “Jon Rahm’s still got a lot to learn. His iron play’s not as sharp as it needs to be to be the best player in the world, and it forces him to have to pitch the ball…his pitching, generally speaking, is not as good as it needs to be. And Spieth’s game has fallen off. So it’s really only two players who could challenge him.
“Irrespective of the world rankings, I think all of us know what we need to know without the world rankings telling us, and it’s Rory and it’s Dustin Johnson and it’s Tiger Woods, but Tiger’s simply not going to play enough to get the points that he needs to get.”
Koepka, who has both won more major titles than DJ and captured all three of his championships since Rory last won a major in 2014, took exception to the slight by Chamblee. And he let it be known via his Twitter on Saturday in response to a GOLF.com article.
This isn’t the first time we’ve seen Koepka and Chamblee spar.
During the Masters last month, Chamblee ripped Koepka for his recent weight loss by suggesting that the 29-year-old lost the weight for a magazine photo shoot. It has been rumored that Koepka lost the weight ahead of an appearance in ESPN‘s The Body Issue later this year.
“For him to change his body, and his body chemistry, for vanity reasons, for a vanity shoot, is the most reckless self-sabotage that I have ever seen of an athlete in his prime,” Chamblee said on Golf Channel. Watch the clip here:
After the first round of the Masters, Chamblee questioned Koepka’s toughness in a tense segment on Golf Channel. It should be noted that Chamblee’s criticism came as Koepka led the 18-hole lead at the year’s first major.
“His talent is undeniable,” Chamblee said. “There’s a sense, and I’ve heard people say this, that you extrapolate from accomplishment, you infer qualities in a human being. Like, ‘He’s really tough.’ Maybe he is, I don’t know. I’m gonna have to say I still need to be convinced.”
Host Rich Lerner pushed back at Chamblee’s claim and defended Koepka’s performances.
“You need to be convinced that he’s tough?” Lerner asked. “Hold on a second. The 16th hole at Bellerive, I don’t think you can get any tougher than that, with everybody screaming and hollering for Tiger Woods who’s posting 64. And he stood up at a major championship on Sunday and just striped a four iron 240-some yards to make a two!”
But Chamblee, in true fashion, wouldn’t back down.
“So here you go,” Chamblee said of Koepka. “He won at Erin Hills. Thirty players at Erin Hills hit 45 fairways. Three hit 51 out of 56. At Merion [in 2013], only one player hit 45 fairways. He won at Shinnecock. Twenty players hit 45 fairways. At Olympic [in 2012], the most fairways anybody hit was 29. My point is, the fairways were very wide, and it’s a perfect scenario for somebody who is a behemoth off the tee to run amok and to just dominate.
“Power is the least variable asset. So, because it’s the least variable asset, if a golf course rewards power disproportionately then there is no volatility. There has to be some penalty for an errant tee shot. I could make the same argument at Bellerive that I just made for Erin Hills and Shinnecock. There’s a sense — and I’ve had people infer this — that he’s better than Dustin Johnson. That his five wins, three of which are major championships, are better than Dustin Johnson’s 20 wins and one major championship, as if majors are the sole determinant of a player.”
When Brooks got wind of Chamblee’s comments about his weight loss, Koepka had this to say on the Thursday of the Masters:
“Well, I lift all the time. I lift too many weights, and I’m too big to play golf,” Koepka said. “And then when I lose weight, I’m too small. So, I don’t know. I don’t know what to say. I’m too big and I’m too small.”
“Listen, I’m going to make me happy. I don’t care what anybody else says. I’m doing it for me, and obviously it seems to work.”
It sure feels like we haven’t seen the last of this all-out feud.
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