Will Jon Rahm’s switch to LIV Golf bring an end to friendship with Tiger Woods, and Rory McIlroy?
Jon Rahm thanked Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, and Patrick Cantlay for being there with him all these PGA years. He wishes his decision not to affect his relationship with his PGA friends.
Jon Rahm, Rory McIlroy and Tiger Woods [Image Credit: Imago]
In his parting message during a Fox News interview, Jon Rahm wished he could remain friends with Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, and Patrick Cantlay. His bombshell move to LIV has unsettled the whole golfing community, but especially fans and players of the PGA Tour.
After stating that he’s not interested in money and in joining the Saudi-backed organization back in 2022, his decision now to move with a possible $600 million in purse has caught everyone by surprise. While money played an important role in his decision, Rahm also stated that there were also other “very, very enticing” offers from LIV.
He’s not only the highest-paid LIV Golfer now, but will also lead his team. For him, having his team has been a crucial factor in his professional development. Despite his feelings towards his move and earlier 2022 statement, he wishes he could maintain his relationship with his PGA friends, especially the trio.
He even thanked them for all that they have done for him over the years and wishes to be able to compete against them once again in the future. Following his exit both Woods and McIlroy have commented on what it would mean for the PGA Tour future.
This wasn’t anything personal with them, it was the choice for me and my family and the better of our future. I hope all the friends that I made still stay my friends, because I’m certainly not going to change and who I am doesn’t really change.Jon Rahm on Fox News.
Since the inception of LIV Golf, the Saudi-backed organization has ruled over the in-fighting in the sport with several billion in the pocket. They have time and again enticed many pro players from the PGA like Dustin Johnson, Phil Mickelson, and others, but their biggest bid has been Jon Rahm, who dealt a severe blow to the traditional golf organization.
What was Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy’s reaction after Jon Rahm’s PGA exit?
Minutes before Jon Rahm’s exit from the traditional golf Tour, Tiger Woods released a memo that stated that the Players Director board was working towards the betterment of the sport. They are trying to build and fix the framework before December 31, when the supposed merger is expected to take place.
Rory McIlroy, on the other hand, commented that he is worried about what butterfly effect Rahm’s move will bring into the world of golf. He wishes people focus more on the sport itself rather than the political in-fighting that’s taking place. Whether his wish will come true or not, fans will have to wait and see.
Furthermore, McIlroy clearly stated that he wants to compete against Rahm in the Ryder Cup 2024. He appealed to make changes in Ryder Cup rules that will allow the Spaniard to compete in one of the golf’s greatest events.
McIlroy stated that it would be great if the European Tour could modify the rules for Ryder Cup 2024 eligibility. He boldly said he would “want Jon Rahm on the next Ryder Cup team.” In an exclusive interview with Sky Sports, he further talked about what Jon Rahm’s exit would mean to the future of golf:
My fear is that we continue down this path where we have competing tours and it divides the eyeballs that are on the game…To me, having all the best golfers under the one umbrella is the best way forward.
Although Rahm’s move has left an enormous effect on golf, McIlroy wishes everyone would get back together and “let bygones be bygones”. Justin Rose has also stated that Rahm’s decision to quit the PGA has punched a hole in the organization’s future plans while powering up the Saudi-backed league.
Discussions regarding Jon Rahm’s move are still on the go with the golf world glued to the latest news and updates regarding him. Furthermore, his move came just weeks before the “framework agreement” on 31 December. It’ll be interesting to see what changes this will bring in future tournaments like The Masters and Ryder Cup.
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