Sooner or later, Patrick Reed was going to be asked about his controversial post-Ryder Cup comments. It happened Friday.
After a second-round 72 left him three back of Tony Finau heading into the weekend at the WGC-HSBC Champions, Reed was baited with a question as to whether he especially wanted to play well this week to prove a point.
“No, not really,” the reigning Masters champion said. “Ryder Cup was three, almost four weeks ago. Right now I’m just trying to play great golf and finish off the year right, because even though the PGA Tour season has now started, for the European Tour, it’s still going on. I’m a little bit behind Francesco [Molinari] in that and I’m hoping to close that gap and have a chance to hopefully win The Race to Dubai.”
Just hours after the U.S. was defeated 17.5-10.5 in last month's Ryder Cup, Reed complained to the New York Timesthat he was "blindsided" by not being paired with Jordan Spieth and suggested the reason was because Spieth didn't want to play with him.
Spieth and Reed have a 4-2-1 record as partners in the Ryder Cup and a 4-0-1 mark in the President's Cup, but American captain Jim Furyk opted to pair Spieth with Justin Thomas and Reed with Tiger Woods. Reed and Woods lost both their team matches together, though Reed did win his singles match to finish with a 1-2 record.
Multiple members of Team USA made comments that contradicted Reed's account—an anonymous team captain, Furyk himself and Thomas all suggested Reed knew he'd be playing with Tiger well before the action at Le Golf National.
Reed was also asked Friday whether he had an ideal partner in mind for the next team competition, the 2019 Presidents Cup in Australia.
“I don’t know,” Reed said. “I don’t even know where I stand on the whole points list or anything like that. Right now I’m just kind of focusing on this week and trying to get through the season.”
This won't be the last time Reed is forced to face the music after those comments. Inevitably, he will be paired with a Ryder Cup teammate and will likely play alongside Spieth later this year. It will be interesting to see the dyanmic if and when that does happen, let alone how Presidents Cup captain Woods will handle Reed in the lead-up to next December's competition.