Talor Gooch hints at LIV Golf format change after Jon Rahm signing

Talor Gooch hints at LIV Golf format change after Jon Rahm signing


Jon Rahm had a lot to say about LIV Golf in the two years leading up to his shocking departure from the PGA Tour.

His biggest criticism of the Saudi Arabian-backed league was LIV’s main selling point – aside from the astronomical money offered – its format.

“To be honest, part of the (LIV) format is not really appealing to me. Shotgun three days to me is not a golf tournament, no cut. It’s that simple,” Rahm said at the 2022 U.S. Open. “I want to play against the best in the world in a format that’s been going on for hundreds of years. That’s what I want to see.”

While speaking to reporters ahead of last Thursday’s announcement, Rahm said he was “hopeful that the leaders of LIV Golf might listen to some of my advice and maybe see some changes in the future for the better of the game.”

The 29-year-old Spaniard was rather coy during the Zoom conference talking about the league’s future and hinted at potential changes in the works. But how would a switch to 72 holes and the addition of a cut sit with LIV players? Depends on who you ask.

“(Rahm) has been vocal about some stuff he didn’t love but he wouldn’t have come to LIV if he thought he was going to win 10 tournaments a year and have no competition,” Talor Gooch told Golf Digest. “He’s a true competitor. It’s beyond exciting [to have Rahm].”

“We haven’t had an open forum discussion with all the players,” said Gooch, LIV’s 2023 individual champion who was recently traded from Bubba Watson’s RangeGoats GC to Brooks Koepka’s Smash GC for Matthew Wolff. “But you get both sides … guys who would welcome (changing to 72 holes) and some guys who are opposed to it. Discussions will be had and it’ll be interesting to see what comes of it.

“I think LIV Golf was meant to be something different; I think it’s not supposed to be a carbon copy of the rest of professional golf. I lean towards keeping it at 54 holes. Part of it, too, from my experience on the PGA Tour, was Thursdays are just irrelevant from a fan perspective (except for) only a couple times a year.”

If you’ve been to a LIV event, the same can be said for Friday and even some Saturday rounds.

Over its first two years, LIV officials often used the analogy that the league was building the plane while it was in the air. The league prides itself on being player-friendly with its fan-free pro-am rounds, press conferences with upwards of four players and a day’s less work for even more pay compared to the Tour. Unlike the PGA Tour, LIV can pivot and be flexible with how it operates.

The issue is, the players in the league now signed up for 54 holes and no cut. If its format is the price to pay for a star like Rahm, that may be enough. Time will tell.



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