Patrick Reed sues Golf Channel, Brandel Chamblee for defamation

Controversial US golfer Patrick Reed is suing the Golf Channel and its analyst Brandel Chamblee for defamation in the US District Court.

The suit claims that the former Masters champion and LIV Golf recruit has been the victim of “calculated, malicious” attacks that have “had a direct effect on his livelihood.”

Among the suit’s background facts is the claim that Chamblee and the Golf Channel has “actively targeted” Reed to “destroy his reputation, create hate, and a hostile work environment” for the player.

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“It is well-known on tour that Mr Reed has been abused and endured more than any other golfer from fans or spectators who have been allowed to scream obscenities only to be glorified by NBC’s Golf Channel for doing so…” the suit reads.

The suit is seeking in excess of $750 million ($1.1bn) in damages.

Reed has long been a controversial figure on the PGA Tour, most recently taking up a big-money offer to join Saudi-backed rival LIV Golf.

The 32-year-old has since resigned his PGA Tour membership, although he featured at all four majors in 2022.

Previously, Reed has been at the centre of multiple cheating scandals.

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In 2019, he was caught on camera illegally improving his lie in a bunker, receiving a two-shot penalty and a stinging rebuke from Chamblee on the eve of that year’s Presidents Cup.

“I think his ego is as big as Jupiter,” Chamblee said at the time. “Ego monsters are irritated by facts, but they’re not moved aside by them. They think their ignorance of the facts, or their version, of what happened is greater than the truth.

“This is going to follow him around like the video of Nixon saying ‘I’m not a crook.’”

Chamblee was later served with a cease-and-desist letter from Reed’s lawyer.

In 2021, Reed was making headlines for the wrong reasons again after he claimed embedded ball relief and picked up his ball before any rules official could inspect his lie.

Chamblee said there was “zero chance” that Reed’s ball embedded in the ground after bouncing.

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“Ask yourself this. If everybody in the field were to conduct themselves around a golf ball in this manner, would it be good for the game of golf? Would it be good optically for the PGA Tour?” he said.

“It would not be. It would call into question every single movement, every single drop that a player would be making.”

The suit also takes a swipe at Chamblee, calling him a former pro who “fell short of ever rising to the accomplished level of Mr Reed.”

“(Chamblee) has become Golf Channel’s primary mouthpiece and agent to push this defamatory agenda and inflict severe damage to Mr Reed, LIV, and other golfers signed with LIV,” it reads.

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