Justin Rose could not have put in more bluntly declaring: “Jon’s a huge coup for LIV, a big blow for the PGA Tour”.
Rose was speaking ahead of the news that Jon Rahm has officially signed with LIV Golf.
There has been rumours for months the super Spaniard would be leaving to join good friend and fellow Masters winner Sergio Garcia at LIV, and the news is now official.
The deal is believed to be worth around $560m and will include an ownership stake for Rahm in a new all-Spanish LIV Golf team featuring the likes of Garcia and countryman David Puig.
Rahm’s decision comes at a time when the PGA Tour and Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund are attempting to hammer out the final details of a framework agreement that would combine their commercial interests into a new for-profit entity, PGA Tour Enterprises.
PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan and Yasir Al-Rumayyan, Governor of the PIF, are scheduled to meet next week. The PIF has spent more than $3 billion funding the LIV Golf League the past two seasons. The framework agreement is set to expire on the last day of 2023.
Rose, who was a team-mate alongside Rahm just over two months ago, is Friday’s starting inaugural PGA Tour sanctioned Grant Invitational at Naples in Florida when he was asked his view on Rahm’s news.
“Jon’s a huge coup for LIV and clearly a big blow for the PGA Tour”, said Rose speaking with the Golf Channel.
“It definitely comes at a very interesting when there is a lot of negotiations happening at the moment, like we know there is a 31st December deadline for talks between the PGA Tour and whoever it may be in bringing potential investment into the PGA Tour such as merger talks etc
“It’s been causing a lot of confusion with people from the outside trying to work out why these talks are taking place.
“So, you could look at it both ways that things on one side are not going well on one side and the recruiting happening on the other is.
“Jon’s signing then is a big statement and yeah, it’s tough for the PGA Tour to lose Rambo, for sure”.