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Phil Mickelson Was Asked About Criticism From 9/11 Victims' Families

Phil Mickelson looking at his shot as it flies through the air.

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, FL - MAY 08: Phil Mickelson of the United States plays a shot during practice rounds prior to THE PLAYERS Championship on the Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass on May 8, 2018 in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)

Of all the criticisms Phil Mickelson has received for joining the LIV Golf tour, the most significant arguably comes from the families of 9/11 terror attack victims.

Mickelson and other American golfers were recently sent a scathing letter from families for their decision to join the LIV Golf tour, which is backed by the royal family of Saudi Arabia. The Saudi royal family has previously been implicated in a role in the 2001 terrorist attacks.

On Monday, Mickelson addressed that criticism. He said that he has "sympathy and empathy" for those who lost loved ones in the attack.

"I have deep empathy for them - I can't stress that enough," Mickelson said. "I have the deepest of sympathy and empathy for them."

But as you might imagine, that answer isn't really sitting well with people. Phil Mickelson is being accused of only joining LIV Golf for the money and throwing away his integrity in the process.

While Mickelson may empathize with those who suffered on 9/11, he appears unmoved to leave the LIV Golf tour despite the potential direct involvement that those bankrolling it may have had in the attacks.

The six-time major winner has clearly lost the respect of a ton of people as a result of his actions here. It wouldn't be too surprising if there are protests at the U.S. Open in Massachusetts this week.

Will Phil Mickelson ever gain that respect back?