Pat Perez was at The Players Championship trying to prove his haters wrong.
We know Perez isn’t happy with the golf media in general for “spinning” his remarks about Tiger Woods earlier this year when he insinuated that Woods was merely going through the motions for his sponsors’ benefit. He took to the Players Tribune in March with an article titled “You Don’t Know Me” to say as much.
And one can imagine he didn’t take kindly to those in the Twitterverse who were critical of what he had to say or the defense he mounted, and he deleted his Twitter account accordingly.
However, it seems Perez’s animosity goes much further than that.
Double P just snuck inside the cut line at TPC Sawgrass. But a tidy 6-under 66 in difficult conditions catapulted him up the leaderboard and inside the top 10. How has Perez, a man laid up with a potentially career-ending shoulder injury last year bounced back in such a big way? What’s motivating him?
“Proving people wrong, for one. Two, I’m just tired. I’m tired of opinions, I’m tired of … I’m just tired of a lot of things. And I just got past it all and I just … I have a whole different outlook at life after being gone for a little bit and really not one person caring, other than my caddie or my wife.”
OK. So he didn’t feel like he was appropriately missed while he was on the shelf. Fine. But, again, the venom extends even further than that, and for the first time, Perez put his former equipment sponsor on blast.
“When I came back, to be dropped by Callaway (as a sponsor) and other stuff – MGM kept me, which is great, because they’re awesome. But to be kind of like told at 40, you can’t do it, you can’t come back, we don’t really believe in you, this kind of stuff, it really can get you upset.
And it’s a hell of a motivator to come back after being on Tour that long and saying, ‘You know what? I think the best is ahead of me and I’m really going to do my absolute all to prove everybody wrong and be successful.’”
In other words, Pat Perez is pissed off at pretty much everybody and has used that anger to great effect. The 41-year-old has made 14 of 15 cuts this season with an impressive nine top-25 finishes and a win in November at the OHL Classic at Mayakoba. The guy is having his best year on Tour ever a year after having to shut it down due to injury.
Perez stumbled to a final-round 76 that left him tied for 22nd, 10 strokes behind Si Woo Kim. He currently sits at fifth in the FedExCup points race.