Thomas supports TOUR's new Player Impact Program: 'It's fascinating'

Jared C. Tilton / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Justin Thomas voiced his support Wednesday for the PGA TOUR's new Player Impact Program, which will reward the 10 most prominent golfers by splitting $40 million among them at the end of each year.

"It's a cool deal," Thomas said at the Valspar Championship, according to ASAP Sports. "It's fascinating."

Players will be rewarded based on a series of metrics, which include, but aren't limited to, their social media engagement, time spent on golf broadcasts, and how often they're searched on Google.

Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson are expected to make the list despite their declining on-course performances, which Thomas has no issue with.

"Guys like Tiger and Phil that have pushed the game and got the purses where they are, got the game of golf where they are, they deserve to be (on that list). Anybody that thinks otherwise, I just highly disagree with it," Thomas said.

"The reason why we are where we are is because of a certain couple people kind of in each generation and each era ... and they're definitely a huge part of that."

However, despite understanding that a little extra effort could go a long way in increasing his popularity, Thomas isn't going to change anything in order to chase the money.

"I'm not going to pay any attention to it," the world No. 2 said.

Thomas added: "Obviously, it would be great to be the most popular, if you will, but I'm not out here for a popularity contest. I'm out here to win golf tournaments and win as many as I possibly can. If I play good golf, I'll do just fine on that program, and that's the main priority."

But not everyone is on board with the new bonus fund.

"I feel for No. 11 and No. 12 and No. 13. ... Everybody brings value, plain and simple," Paul Casey said.

The Englishman added: "Is this the best way of compensating guys? I don't know."

Casey, who would've voted on the Player Impact Program as a member of the player advisory council, said the new system is "probably not" how he would've handled the $40-million fund.

"There's a lot of ideas that I would have probably implemented," Casey said. "I'm not going to say them here because that's unfair."

Thomas supports TOUR's new Player Impact Program: 'It's fascinating'
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