PGA Tour pro not a fan of Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy's changes

PGA Tour pro James Hahn does not appear too pleased with the changes that were announced after the Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy meeting.

Ben Smith's picture
Sun, 28 Aug 2022
PGA Tour pro not a fan of Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy's changes

PGA Tour pro James Hahn does not appear to be too happy with the sweeping changes that were announced in riposte to LIV Golf after "the meeting" that was orchestrated by Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy. 

In an interview with Adam Schupack of Golfweek, Hahn has claimed the "secret meeting" that was orchestrated by Woods and McIlroy that preceded the raft of changes was only to the benefit of the top players. 

Hahn has hit the headlines in recent weeks. He was ripped to shreds on social media after he criticised the PGA Tour's schedule for 2022-2023. He later doubled down. 

In particular, Hahn has questioned the jacked-up Player Impact Program. When it was introduced at the start of last year's campaign, it was seen as a slush fund to keep the top players on the Tour happy. 

More: What changes have the PGA Tour made?

Now five of the top-10 players in the inaugural PIP have jumped over to LIV Golf. This "program" has now been increased to $100m and will reward the top 20 players. 

Hahn claims that there is a little bit of animosity amongst certain Tour members over these changes. 

The 40-year-old is one of four player directors on the PGA Tour's policy board. He told Golfweek he cast the only dissenting vote on the proposed changes. 

Related: James Hahn calls out fan...for eating too loudly

Scroll down to see Hahn's comments

"Certain changes were made to combat the LIV Tour, not necessarily make our Tour any better," he told Schupak. "To prevent more players from leaving our Tour, we are ending up paying the top players in the world guaranteed money that has increased exponentially.

"Three years ago, we started implementing this new PIP program, which has grown to $100million. It seems like the people who have the most influence of how much money is distributed to the top players in the world have a much stronger voice now than they've ever had.

"I understand the reasoning that the money is used to keep top players and without them, we have no Tour. My question to them is when is it enough? We've gone from $50million to $100million. When $100million isn't enough, will they ask for $200million? How will that impact our business?

"We all want the same thing, what's best for the Tour, but we have different ideas on how to get there. Right now, it seems like they are catering to the top players in the world."

On the Tiger / Rory meeting, Hahn told Golfweek:

"The secret meeting with Tiger and Rory set a precedent that the top 20 players can get whatever they want from the Tour. So, what's stopping the other 90 percent of our Tour from getting together and doing the same exact thing as Rory and Tiger and saying the top 20 players can go play their own tournaments but the rest of the Tour, us 90 percent all stand together and we want more benefits?

"I feel like a portion of the $100million could have gone to making our Tour great rather than going to the top 20. These are the little things that irritate the rest of the membership to the point there is a lot of animosity between the haves and have-nots.

He added: "It's crazy to think that it took a secret meeting between Tiger, Rory and the best players in the world to make a change so fast that could have been made a year or two ago.

"I was talking to Bryson [DeChambeau] before he left the Tour. That's what he wanted. He wanted the top players in a room and have a conversation on what they bring to the Tour and how can they be compensated for it. Because of the person that Bryson is, I don't think he got the respect of his peers to bring together those players."

Read the full interview.

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Next page: Latest LIV Golf signee thanks Tiger Woods as he leaves PGA Tour