A PGA Tour winner dismissed Gooch's comments about Rory McIlroy: He should be quiet

"What has he ever done? What has he ever done?!"- Mediate said.

by Sead Dedovic
A PGA Tour winner dismissed Gooch's comments about Rory McIlroy: He should be quiet
© Eakin Howard/Getty Images Sport

Talor Gooch triggered a lot of reactions after his comments on Rory McIlroy and his potential Masters win this year. In an interview with the Australian Golf Digest, Gooch emphasized that if Rory McIlroy wins the Masters, it won't carry the same significance as before, considering that many stars currently part of LIV Golf will be absent from the Masters this year. 

For years, Rory McIlroy has been striving to win the Masters and complete the Grand Slam. Probably one of the most anticipated moments in golf history is the potential occasion when Rory McIlroy achieves victory at the Masters.

"If Rory McIlroy goes and completes his [career] grand slam without some of the best players in the world, there's just going to be an asterisk. It's just the reality. I think everybody wins whenever the majors figure out a way to get the best players in the world there."- Gooch said.

His statement did not go unnoticed, and it sparked numerous reactions. Golf fans and experts mocked Gooch's reaction on social media, believing that he was merely expressing frustrations because he and the rest of the LIV Golfers won't have the chance to compete at the Masters. 

Most of these reactions were negative, but there were also positive ones. 

Rocco Mediate, a man who achieved great success on the PGA Tour, decided to respond to Gooch's comments during a SiriusXM show. Mediate was angry upon hearing such remarks and believes that Gooch's comments have no basis. He is confident that golfers who need to participate in the Masters will be part of this competition. Rocco also chose to downplay Gooch's achievements on LIV Golf.

"So if Rory wins The Masters there should be an asterisk... I wonder why that is?! Everybody that belongs in The Masters, all the past champions that are on LIV are playing. Is it because he's not in? What has he ever done? What has he ever done?! The fact that he was the best player on LIV last year is an embarrassment."- Mediate said, as quoted by golfmagic.com

Mediate strongly disagreed with Gooch's remarks, pointing out that Gooch has only won a single tournament on the PGA Tour and questioning its importance. He suggested that Gooch should refrain from commenting, focus on his own career, and enjoy his earnings.

Rocco Mediate
Rocco Mediate© Julio Aguilar/Getty Images Sport

Mediate found it embarrassing for Gooch to comment on Rory McIlroy, implying that LIV Golf should advise Gooch to be more cautious, as the golfers who deserve to be at Augusta National will certainly participate.

Rory McIlroy is a golfer with a massive fan base, and the majority has rallied behind him in support. The Northern Irishman has remained loyal to the PGA Tour when many opted to chase money and sell the Tour that provided them with the opportunity to develop and become stars. This loyalty is one of the reasons why Rory will have the chance to compete in this year's Masters. McIlroy is a favorite golfer for many, appreciated for both his golfing skills and personal qualities.

Dan Rapaport reacts to Talor Gooch's statement

Dan Rapaport, a staff writer at Golf Digest and podcaster, also reacted via X.

Dan Rapaport
Dan Rapaport© Cliff Hawkins/Getty Images Sport

He emphasized that around 20% of LIV Golf players will have the opportunity to play in the Masters this year. Rapaport, much like the majority of golf fans, believes that Gooch is frustrated because he won't be part of the Masters.

"Think there are 12 LIV guys in the field at Augusta. Roughly 20% of LIV is in the Masters. So what Talor Gooch really means is there’d be an asterisk on Rory’s win because Talor Gooch isn’t in the field."- he wrote on X!

Many mostly criticize Gooch considering his performances in majors, which haven't been particularly successful. Gooch is certainly frustrated because he doesn't have the opportunity to play in the Masters, but there is hope and optimism for him and other LIV Golfers that the future might bring something else. 

The only hope at this moment is the merger between the PGA Tour and PIF. Although it was expected that things would be resolved much earlier, there is still no information on whether PIF and PGA Tour are close to a final agreement. 

SSG's investment in the PGA Tour has changed many things and diminished optimism that PIF and PGA Tour can find common ground. The future of this sport will be interesting and bring many developments. Statements like Gooch's can only be an additional motivation for Rory McIlroy to give his best and achieve his ultimate goal.

Perhaps 2024 will be the best year for Rory McIlroy. The Northern Irishman deserves to win the Masters!

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