Rory: TOUR deal with Saudi PIF has 'nothing to do' with LIV Golf
TORONTO - The face of the PGA TOUR has weighed in a day after the shocking agreement between the PGA, the DP World Tour, and LIV Golf's owners, the Saudi Public Investment Fund, shook the sports world to its core.
Nobody on the PGA TOUR has spoken more frequently about LIV Golf since its inception a year ago than Rory McIlroy, with the four-time major winner meeting media nearly every tournament to field questions and give opinions about the rival circuit.
Due to that history, many expected McIlroy to be angry when meeting with the press on Wednesday at the Canadian Open. However, the 34-year-old presented a calm and measured front while setting the record straight.
"So I think the one thing that I think was really misconstrued last, yesterday, was all the headlines were PGA TOUR merges with LIV. And LIV's got nothing to do with this, right," McIlroy said. "It's the PGA TOUR, DP World Tour, and the Public Investment Fund are basically partnering to create a new company."
McIlroy leaned on the fact that PGA TOUR commissioner Jay Monahan has been installed as the CEO of the yet-to-be-named company formed by the three entities as proof that the TOUR still holds the cards.
"If you look at the structure of how it's structured now, this new company sits above everything. Jay is the CEO of that," McIlroy said. "So, technically, anyone that is involved with LIV now would answer to Jay. So the PGA TOUR have control of everything. And one thing as well is, whether you like it or not, the PIF were going to keep spending the money in golf. At least the PGA TOUR now controls how that money is spent."
Not only is McIlroy out to set the record straight on what the details of the deal are, but he's certainly not backing down on his stance toward LIV Golf that he's carried since its inception.
"I still hate LIV. Like, I hate LIV. I hope it goes away. And I fully expect that it does," McIlroy admitted. "And I think that's where the distinction here is. This is the PGA TOUR, the DP World Tour, and the PIF. Very different from LIV. All I've tried to do is protect what the PGA TOUR is and what the PGA TOUR stands for. And I think it will continue to do that."
While the announcement of the deal included that team golf would continue in some capacity, it failed to mention whether it would involve LIV or its format.
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