2023 Open Championship: Jon Rahm offers softer opinion than fellow Tour pros regarding PGA Tour-PIF deal

Hoylake, England — John Rahm struck a different tone than some of his other high-profile peers on Tuesday, saying PGA Tour commissioner Guy Monahan deserves time to work through the framework agreement with Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund and that the stars who remain with the Tour don’t necessarily need to be compensated. about their loyalty.

Over the past six weeks, many players have expressed their anger at being left in the dark during negotiations. confusion in the form of the future scene; And now I’m frustrated that there are still so few answers. Monahan returned to action on Monday after a month-long absence due to an undisclosed health issue, and last week Xander Schavelli and Jordan Spieth suggested Monahan would have to repair the trust he broke with some players.

But Ram appeared more forgiving when he spoke to reporters on Tuesday at Royal Liverpool. He said that Monahan is “a really good guy” and has treated his family well, and that he did a “fantastic job” at the helm of the tour. Although he admitted that the deal between Tor and the PIF was “unexpected,” Ram said the two sides deserved time to work out the details before the December 31 deadline.

He said: ‘The turn they took on without us knowing was very unexpected, but I still think he’s doing a great job. For the time being, now that this has happened, I think it’s only fair to give them the appropriate time to work things out.’

“I still think they have the best interest at heart of the players. All we have now, is a framework agreement. It’s an agreement to get an agreement. We don’t have anything at the moment to be able to say or judge what they did.”

So his belief in management, and Monahan in particular, hasn’t changed?

Ram said, “No.” “Again, he still has all the time to work on this agreement to prove that this was basically the right decision.”

Brooks Koepka, whose chances of earning Ryder Cup points were limited to the majors due to LIV’s third place in American points.

Of the many details still to be ironed out, two of the most pressing seem to be how (if any) to compensate those who remained loyal to the tour, and how to reintegrate the LIV defectors back into the tour scene.

A day after the shocking announcement, Rory McIlroy described himself as a “sacrificial lamb” and suggested that players who had shunned Saudi millions should, in some way, be integrated by holding on to the Tour in their fight against an existential threat.

“The simple answer is yes,” McIlroy said at the RBC Canadian Open. “The complicated answer is how does that happen.”

Even lesser-known players, like Chaison Hadley, saw that week that they deserved some kind of payback.

“I would like to be rewarded for my decision to remain loyal,” Hadley said.

Monahan vowed to reward players, in some way, for helping support the trend of “this pro-competition, legacy-driven juggernaut” and that more details are in the near future.

But Ram did not share this point of view. Yes, the reigning Masters champ could have dealt a crushing blow to the establishment by joining LIV — he was reportedly offered a mind-boggling amount of guaranteed money — but he chose to stay with the tour.

That was an important distinction, he said: It was for him resolution.

He said, “I wasn’t forced to do anything.” “Do I think they should be and there should be compensation? No, I just stayed because I think it’s the best option for myself and the golf I want to play.”

He added, “We all had the opportunity to go to LIV, take the money and choose to stay on the PGA Tour for whatever reason we choose.” “I already make a great living doing what I do. I am so grateful, and it all happened because of the platform the PGA Tour gave me. As far as I am concerned, they have done enough for me, and their focus should be on improving the PGA Tour and the game of golf for generations.” coming.”

But if the Tour comes up with a plan to reward top players like Ram, “I wouldn’t say no,” he said with a laugh.

Another major component of the agreement – besides dropping costly litigation between the warring parties – was the possibility of returning LIV players after this season concluded.

The question is how.

Ram said he understands both sides — that some tour loyalists want LIV players to pay a heavy price to leave, while also understanding the appeal of allowing them to return to make the tour’s biggest events even bigger. Ram thought some penalty was in order, but he was still wrestling with his feelings about the severity of any potential penalty, whether it should be paid on a case-by-case basis, or if players who had left. Even they want to go back.

“Right now, it’s kind of a waiting game,” he said. “Hopefully they can come to a partnership where they’re both happy with what the outcome will be, and everyone can move forward to be the best golf product we can put out there. Whatever that looks like, I don’t know.”

    (tags for translation) John Ram

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