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Patrick Reed’s lawsuits vs Brandel Chamblee, golf media backfire; ordered to pay

Patrick Reed filed defamation lawsuits against golf media members. The Judge not only refuted them but dunked on him along the way.

Patrick Reed, LIV Golf
Patrick Reed during the 2023 Hong Kong Open.
Photo by Jason Butler/Getty Images
Jack Milko Jack Milko has been playing golf since he was five years old. He has yet to record a hole-in-one, but he did secure an M.A. in Sports Journalism from St. Bonaventure University.

Back in September, just before the 2023 Ryder Cup, U.S. District Judge Timothy Corrigan dismissed Patrick Reed’s defamation lawsuits against Golf Channel’s Brandel Chamblee, , Doug Ferguson of the Associated Press, and other journalists.

This was the second time Reed saw his $750 million lawsuit dismissed.

And then, on Jan. 5, 2023, Judge Corrigan handed down another Order.

Reed now needs to pay the legal fees for each defendant, according to Andrew Pantazi, the editor of The Tributary.

Along with Chamblee and Ferguson, other defendants include Eamon Lynch of Golfweek, author Shane Ryan, Damon Hack of the Golf Channel, The New York Post, and Fox Sports, among others.

Reed alleged that the defendants engaged in “conspiracy, defamation, injurious falsehood, and tortious interference” in various articles, broadcasts, and books. These lawsuits were initially filed when he joined the Saudi-backed LIV Golf circuit.

They also came on the heels of numerous rule controversies that seemingly never escape Reed.

“While Reed may be frustrated at the negative media coverage he receives (some of which seems over the top), under Florida law and the First Amendment, Reed fails to bring actionable defamation claims, and his cases, therefore, must be dismissed,” Corrigan said in September.

Patrick Reed, LIV Golf, BNI Indonesian Masters
Patrick Reed during the 2023 BNI Indonesian Masters.
Photo by Jason Butler/Getty Images

Less than three months later, the Court ruled that Reed brought these lawsuits to stifle free speech—violating the First Amendment.

Furthermore, according to the Order released on Jan. 5, 2024, Reed encroached on Florida’s anti-SLAPP provision. This prohibits lawsuits against individuals for exercising their right to free speech in connection with a public issue, according to the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press.

Judge Corrigan alluded to this in his Order on Jan. 5, 2024. But the Judge also referenced Reed’s motives to relitigate past arguments.

On the contrary, Reed argued that the Court ignored case law while misstating the law as well.

“The Court carefully reviewed and heard the briefs and arguments presented before issuing the dispositive Order,” Corrigan wrote.

“The Court also has considered the case-law cited in Reed’s reconsideration motions, none of which changes the Court’s reasoning. Notably, Reed seemingly disregards the law cited by the Court in the dispositive Order.”

The contentious golfer tried to get cute with the legal system after journalists and authors criticized him for moving to LIV Golf. Those same individuals also reported on the numerous controversies that have beleaguered Reed throughout his career.

Indeed, and rightfully so, Reed felt agitated.

But the U.S. District Court in the Middle District of Florida decided to end Reed’s antics once and for all—by forcing him to pay for everyone’s troubles.

Jack Milko is a golf staff writer for SB Nation’s Playing Through. Be sure to check out @_PlayingThrough for more golf coverage. You can follow him on Twitter @jack_milko as well.