PGA Tour Changes 'Make The Product More Compelling' - McIlroy

The Northern Irishman has led the plaudits after the PGA Tour announced unprecedented changes

Rory McIlroy 2022 Tour Championship Press Conference
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Rory McIlroy has led the plaudits after PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan announced unprecedented changes ahead of the FedEx Cup season finale at East Lake, the Tour Championship.

Among a number of wholesale changes, Monahan introduced four new elevated events for the 2023 season, taking the total to 12. The events, which will be announced in due course, will carry a tournament purse of at least $20m and join the likes of the BMW Championship, Arnold Palmer Invitational, The Memorial Tournament and the Genesis Invitational. 

The Commissioner also revealed the PGA Tour "top players" have committed to compete in at least 20 PGA Tour events per year. The intention being that the best in the world will gather for the elevated events alongside the four Major championships, the flagship Players Championship and the FedEx Cup Playoffs. 

The changes, which were by and large brought forward to combat the threat posed to the established ecosystem by the Greg Norman-fronted LIV Golf League, met the approval of four-time Major champion, Rory McIlroy. 

"I saw a stat yesterday that, apart from the Major championships and maybe the Players [Championship], the top-10 players, top-20 players get together to play against each other one other time during the year. 

"I think if you’re trying to sell a product to TV and to sponsors, and to try and get as many eyeballs on professional golf as possible, you need to at least let people know what they’re tuning in for."

The Northern Irishman added: "When I tune into a Tampa Bay Buccaneers game, I expect to see Tom Brady throw a football. When I tune into a Formula 1 race, I expect to see Lewis Hamilton in a car. Sometimes what’s happened on the PGA Tour is we all act independently and we sort of have our own schedules, and that means that we never really get together all that often and I think what came out of the meeting last week is we’ve all made a commitment to get together more often to make the product more compelling."

Tiger Woods and McIlroy headlined a meeting with fellow PGA Tour stars in Delaware, the host town of the BMW Championship. The discussions proved fruitful with wholesale changes announced a little over a week later.

Earlier this year, Greg Norman revealed plans to expand the LIV Golf Series to a fully-fledged League in 2023 - with 48 players and 12 established team franchises competing in an expanded 14-tournament schedule and an enormous $405m total prize purse - a huge increase on the $225m on offer for this year’s eight-tournament Series.

The recent PGA Tour announcement will attempt to combat the financial allure of LIV Golf but as previously reported, Golf Monthly understand that Greg Norman is set to announce at least five new big name signings once the FedEx Cup Playoffs have concluded. 

James joined Golf Monthly having previously written for other digital outlets. He is obsessed with all areas of the game – from tournament golf, to history, equipment, technique and travel. He is also an avid collector of memorabilia; with items from the likes of Bobby Jones, Tiger Woods, Francis Ouimet, Arnold Palmer, Lee Trevino, Adam Scott and Ernie Els. As well as writing for Golf Monthly, James’ golfing highlight is fist bumping Phil Mickelson on his way to winning the Open Championship at Muirfield in 2013. James grew up on the east coast of England and is the third generation of his golfing family. He now resides in Leeds and is a member of Cobble Hall Golf Club with a handicap index of 1.7. His favourite films are The Legend of Bagger Vance and Tin Cup.