As the scuttlebutt out of the Ryder Cup goes, Dustin Johnson and Brooks Koepka got into at least one argument, perhaps two, to bookend a disastrous week in Paris for the American team.
Four separate outlets reported confirmation of a Sunday evening dust-up between the Bash Brothers, suggesting but not saying for certain that Paulina Gretzky (and perhaps Koepka’s girlfriend Jena Sims) were related to the scuffle.
A French outlet, L’Equipe, reports Johnson and Koepka had a confrontation on the way to France and had to be separated by captain Jim Furyk, who called on their better nature to put whatever difference aside for the team’s sake.
So, when Koepka’s agent Blake Smith denied out-of-hand the Sunday night argument happened to Golf Digest, it seemed odd. Who could dupe four separate publications into reporting on something that was pure fiction? That would be a bad look for a journalist, and the folks confirming the juicy account are as reputable as they come in the sport.
However, on Wednesday in Scotland, Brooks Koepka himself denied the reported incident ever happened.
“This Dustin thing, I just don’t get. There was no fight, no argument, but I’m curious who would win in a fight. It would be interesting,” Koepka said ahead of the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship at St. Andrews. “He’s one of my best friends. I love the kid to death. We talked on the phone Monday and yesterday, so you tell me how we fought. People like to make a story and run with it. It’s not the first time there’s been a news story that isn’t true that’s gone out.”
Koepka said he and Johnson, who are said to be close and regularly work out and practice together, aren’t the kind of people to get worked up.
“We never fought, that’s not our relationship. We’re two even-keeled guys and I can’t even remember raising my voice to him or him to me in our four years of friendship,” he said. “That’s not who we are. We’re pretty laid back and it’s just you guys trying to make something that’s not there. We supposed(ly) fought on the plane on the way over too when we were sleeping. It’s just awful.”
The three-time major winner also said the United States team got along well on the whole.
“As far as camaraderie, it was fine, it was perfect,” Koepka said. “The problem is you guys (the media) try to find a reason why we lost and the simple reason is we just didn’t play good enough.
“We didn’t make the putts, hit the fairways, especially me. I lost two matches and halved another one. If I win those, if Tiger (Woods) wins his; Dustin lost one with me and then I think lost in the singles. If we play how we’re supposed to play, we win. There’s nothing wrong with our team. Our team was great. Jim was great.”
While Koepka may have oversimplified the reasons why the US didn’t play well enough to win, the bottom line is 12 world-class players had a chance to beat 12 other world-class players and ultimately didn’t.