Why Patrick Cantlay is willing to have ‘unpopular take’ in Tour talks
If Patrick Cantlay were an animal he’d be a salmon, swimming upstream.
The 30-year-old PGA Tour winner is many things, but he is not one for going with the flow. Over the span of his decade in pro golf, Cantlay has earned a reputation as one of its most unfalteringly honest players, a mix of candor and bluntness that can often be misinterpreted as deadpan disinterest.
Sometimes, that honesty has accrued him unwanted attention. While his name has repeatedly surfaced as the subject of rumors about defections to LIV Golf, Cantlay has remained steadfast in his commitment to … considering all the options.
But make no mistake, Cantlay remains enthusiastic as ever about the direction of the PGA Tour. In fact, as he said on this week’s episode of The Drop Zone, his criticisms of the Tour in the age of LIV have not come from his perceived interest in its rivals, but quite the opposite.
“I think I’m just not afraid to go against the grain or hold an unpopular take if I think it’s founded in some sort of truth or reality,” Cantlay told GOLF’s Dylan Dethier. “I’m not afraid to upset 90 percent of the people in the room if I think it’s a subject that’s worth making them upset about.”
Including, it turns out, if that subject is going against the Tour party line as it relates to LIV.
“Yeah, definitely [I’ve had the opportunity to voice concerns],” Cantlay said. “I think that I’m just one of the many voices and I think it’s important that you try to get as many of the voices and that way you can hear the predominant things that are being said.”
Cantlay’s perspective has the potential to put him at odds with more overtly pro-Tour figures like Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy or Tour executives. But sometimes disagreement is good, he says, even if it means running afoul of the GOAT.
“If I think that it’s grounded in reality and I think it’s worth talking about, I think we should talk about it,” he says. “It’s easy for one person to go down the wrong path, but it’s harder for a lot of people to go down the wrong path.”
For Cantlay, the credo is as simple as it is consistent: to thine own self be true.
To hear the rest of his Drop Zone interview, check out the embedded podcast below or click here to listen on Apple Podcasts.