Speculation is rife about Masters champion Jon Rahm possibly joining LIV Golf, a Saudi-backed league, in a move that could significantly impact the golfing world. While Rahm hasn’t openly embraced this idea, the prospect of playing for more money, reduced travel, team ownership, and a colossal signing bonus – rumored to be around $600 million – is understandably tempting.
The Saudi Public Investment Fund (PIF), with its extensive involvement in sports including football, tennis, and more, and an 80% stake in Newcastle United, is no stranger to such high-value deals. The PIF’s rumored offer to Lionel Messi and its bid for the 2034 World Cup further underscore its ambitions in the sports domain. Rahm’s potential association with LIV Golf could be a strategic extension of these efforts.
According to reported by a Sports Illustrated, historical precedents, like Julius Erving’s initial career in the ABA and prominent signings in the USFL, show that top players have often explored opportunities beyond traditional leagues. PIF governor Yasir Al-Rumayyan, who oversees a fund worth over $775 billion, has already invested more than $2 billion into LIV Golf. Rahm, a two-time major champion and a key figure in the PGA and DP World Tours, could bring much-needed attention and legitimacy to LIV Golf.
Rahm’s move, if it happens, could mark a significant turning point for LIV Golf in 2024, signaling PIF’s enduring commitment to the sport and representing a lucrative opportunity for Rahm himself, with financial security for his family across generations.