How Joe LaCava Ended Up On Patrick Cantlay's Bag

For more than a decade Joe LaCava has been at Tiger Woods' side as they teamed up to win the Masters four years ago.

This week LaCava has been alongside Patrick Cantlay and the American has explained how the new partnership came about. 

LaCava and Cantlay are expected to be together for the 'foreseeable future'.

“I've been friends with Fred Couples a long time, he's been in Newport Beach for a number of years now and we've played a lot of golf together, so I've heard a number of great things about Joe,” Cantlay said. “You know, when I reached out to Joe, he said it was possible and ended up working out and I'm really happy about it.”

Before Woods, who is expected to be out for the rest of the season following his ankle surgery, he worked for Couples and he spent a one-off week with Cantlay at the 2021 Northern Trust.

“LaCava filled in a week for me a couple years ago. We've known each other a few years now and he's a pro and I've been doing it a little while now, so it's a pretty easy transition. Fred Couples just spoke so highly of him not just as a caddie but as a friend, that he's just a great dude.

"I trust Fred a lot, he's a good friend of mine and I've gotten pretty close to him over the years, so when he says something like that, I know he keeps a tight circle, he means it,” Cantlay added.

Reportedly Cantlay hasn't spoken with Woods but Justin Thomas, who is one of Tiger's close mates, insisted that he will be OK with the move.

“LaCava is as loyal as loyal gets. The amount of time that he spent at home (with Woods) when guys would, I mean, there’s so many guys out here that would have him caddie in an instant, when he was loyal to Tiger and Tiger’s probably telling him go caddie, go do whatever, and Joe, that’s just not the kind of guy Joe is.

“I don’t know the details and don’t know how long it is or what’s going on but I know that that’s something that would never ever, ever be done if Tiger would not OK that. That’s not the kind of guy Joe is, kind of guy Tiger is and same with Patrick. There definitely was some kind of conversation that went on there.”

As for Cantlay's former bagman, Matt Minister, there was no bad blood according to the Ryder Cup star.

“We accomplished a lot together and I'm really proud of all we accomplished,” Cantlay said. “He's a great friend of mine and we had a lot of good finishes together and a lot of wins. I'm incredibly grateful to him, just needed a change.”