Back injury forces Collin Morikawa to withdraw from ‘The Netflix Cup’
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Written by Staff @PGATOUR
Collin Morikawa withdrew from Tuesday’s “The Netflix Cup,” he announced earlier in the day, citing a back injury.
Tony Finau will replace Morikawa as French driver Pierre Gasly’s partner at Netflix’s inaugural live sports event, contested at Wynn Golf Club, Las Vegas.
Morikawa won his most recent PGA TOUR start at the ZOZO CHAMPIONSHIP in October, snapping a victory drought of two-plus years. It marked his sixth TOUR title and first since The Open Championship in 2021. Morikawa, 26, also represented the U.S. Team at the Ryder Cup in September. He tied for sixth on the 2023 FedExCup.
“I’m very disappointed to say that I’ve had to withdraw from today’s Netflix Cup as I tweaked my back while at the gym earlier this week,” Morikawa said Tuesday on X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter. “I’ve been so excited about this for a long time but I have to prioritize my health going into next season. I’ll still be onsite, rooting for Pierre and Tony as they make their run for the Cup.”
This isn’t Morikawa’s first back issue of the year. In June, he withdrew from the Memorial Tournament presented by Workday before the final round due to muscle spasms. He was only two off the lead through 54 holes but hurt himself stretching before the final round.
“Muscle in the back, lower back, just kind of gave out,” he said at the time. “We were doing some like reflex stuff, trying to reach down and try to pick something up like quick and low. Went after it weird. Literally have never had this in my life. I've hurt my back briefly before, but like nothing has been this bad, especially never warming up, never doing anything pre-round. It sucks.”
Morikawa returned to action two weeks later at the U.S. Open and finished T14. Early-week at the U.S. Open, he said he was swinging pain-free after taking a few days off, attributing the injury to “bad movement” rather than the golf swing.
The California native has recorded six top-25s in eight starts overall since the Memorial – which marked the first WD of his career.
“The Netflix Cup” will be broadcast live on Netflix beginning at 6 p.m. ET on Tuesday, featuring athletes from two of Netflix's most popular sports series, “Formula 1: Drive to Survive” and “Full Swing." The two matchups will feature British-Belgian race car driver Lando Norris and Rickie Fowler taking on Spanish racing driver Carlos Sainz and Justin Thomas. Thai-British driver Alex Albon and Max Homa will compete against Gasly and Finau.
Each match will feature eight holes of match play with some surprise challenges. The match winners will advance to a playoff hole to crown a winner.