Charles Barkley Supports New LIV Golf League, Jokingly Says He’d ‘Kill a Relative’ for $200 Million

by Dustin Schutte

Charles Barkley‘s relatives might start sleeping with one eye open. They could be in harm’s way if LIV Golf comes knocking on the NBA legend’s door with a hefty paycheck.

Barkley voiced his support for LIV Golf during an appearance on the Pat McAfee Show on Friday. With the U.S. Open underway in Boston, the NBA analyst for TNT wants to see some pandemonium.

“I want all the LIV guys on top of the leaderboard,” Barkley said. “I want to see the PGA Tour shaking in their damn boots. Listen, I’m not a religious dude, but I want chaos this weekend at the U.S. Open.”

Phil Mickelson, Dustin Johnson and Bryson DeChambeau are just some of the players leaving the PGA Tour for LIV Golf. However, all three — and others — are participants in this year’s U.S. Open from The Country Club.

Despite PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan’s decision to suspend all LIV Golf members from the PGA Tour, the U.S. Open allowed all qualifiers to play in the event.

Golfers who agreed to joined the Saudi Arabia-back LIV Golf league are facing a lot of harsh criticism. Barkley isn’t one of commentators vilifying those who accepted the large pay day.

“I don’t judge other people. Listen, if somebody gave me $200 million, I’d kill a relative,” Barkley said jokingly. “I’m serious. They’re saying Phil Mickelson got $200 million, Dustin Johnson got $150 million. … For $150 million, I’d kill a relative – even one I like.”

Given Barkley’s game, LIV Golf probably won’t come calling with a $150 million contract anytime soon.

Phil Mickelson Struggles at U.S. Open

Phil Mickelson might’ve had Charles Barkley’s support during this year’s U.S. Open, but that wasn’t nearly enough to help six-time major champion. His tournament ended early, missing the cut after shooting 11-over-par in the first two rounds.

Mickelson returned to the golf course after a lengthy absence for LIV Golf’s inaugural event, the London Invitation, earlier this month. “Lefty” shot 10-over-par in the 54-hole tournament and finished tied for 33rd out of 48 players. His game wasn’t any better at The Country Club.

The only highlight — or lowlight, in this case — came on the sixth hole of the opening round. Mickelson four-putted from within 12 feet on the Par 3. Only one-third of his round completed, Mickelson had accumulated 14 putts and was +5 for the day.

An uncomfortable press conference earlier in the week preceded Mickelson’s ugly play at the 2022 U.S. Open. The once-charismatic and happy-go-lucky golfer was defensive and snippy while speaking with reporters, particularly when discussing his PGA Tour suspension.

“My preference is to be able to choose which path I would like, one or the other or both,” Mickelson said Monday. “I’ve worked hard to earn a lifetime membership. I’ve worked hard to give back to the PGA Tour and the game of golf throughout my 30-plus years of professional golf, and I’ve earned that lifetime membership, so I believe it should be my choice.”

Mickelson has won 45 events on the PGA Tour during his career. He has claimed six major championships. The only one missing from his trophy case? A U.S. Open title, finishing in second place six times.

Jon Rahm Speaks Out on LIV Golf vs. PGA Tour

Like Charles Barkley, 2021 U.S. Open champion Jon Rahm isn’t passing judgment on players who took the offer from LIV Golf. Unlike the NBA analyst, though, Rahm isn’t willing to “kill a relative” for the payout.

Rahm provided the best defense of the PGA Tour during his U.S. Open press conference before the start of the tournament. Without criticizing those who left, Rahm explained his loyalty to his current league.

“Yeah, money is great, but when Kelley and I – this first thing happened, we started talking about it, and we’re like, will our lifestyle change if I got $400 million? No, it will not change one bit,” Rahm said.

“Truth be told, I could retire right now with what I’ve made and live a very happy life and not play golf again. So I’ve never really played the game of golf for monetary reasons. I play for the love of the game, and I want to play against the best in the world. I’ve always been interested in history and legacy, and right now the PGA Tour has that.”

Rahm won his first major championship in 2021, claiming the U.S. Open title at Torrey Pines. He has won seven events on the PGA Tour.