PGA Denies Dustin Johnson Suspended
It’s a case of he said, they said, they said as Dustin Johnson, the PGA Tour and various media outlets are reporting three very different stories about the sudden departure of the No. 16 golfer in the world.
On Wednesday, Johnson abruptly announced he was withdrawing from the WGC-Bridgestone in Akron, Ohio, then several photos of him on a golf course with fiancee Paulina Gretzky, daughter of NHL legend Wayne, made their way across social media.
On Thursday, Johnson released the following statement:
“I am taking a leave of absence from professional golf, effective immediately. I will use this time to seek professional help for personal challenges I have faced. By committing the time and resources necessary to improve my mental health, physical well-being and emotional foundation, I am confident that I will be better equipped to fulfill my potential and become a consistent champion.
“I respectfully ask my fans, well-wishers and the media for privacy as I embark upon this mission of self-improvement.”
That was the story for less than a day, as the Golf Channel reported Friday that Johnson had in been suspended from the tour for failing a drug test for cocaine. That report said he had failed two prior tests as well.
As the day wore on, other media outlets reported Johnson had also had affairs with two other PGA players wives, allegedly breaking up one marriage.
After wishing Johnson well in a prepared statement on Thursday, PGA Tour Vice President Ty Votaw addressed the reports of a suspension on Friday.
“With regard to media reports that Dustin Johnson has been suspended by the PGA Tour, this is to clarify that Mr. Johnson has taken a voluntary leave of absence and is not under a suspension from the PGA Tour,” Votaw said in a statement.