July 23, 2024

Jon Rahm signed a deal with LIV Golf worth a reported £450 million last month, but his former Ryder Cup captain Padraig Harrington believes the Spanish star is worth every penny

Padraig Harrington believes LIV Golf did not ‘overpay’ for their latest mega-money signing Jon Rahm, after the Spaniard signed a deal worth a reported £450 million ($600m).

Rahm became arguably LIV’s biggest coup yet in December, after the Masters champion opted to sign on the dotted line with the breakaway league. In doing so the Spaniard wrote himself into the history books, agreeing the third most lucrative sports contract of all time.

Rahm, 29, is the latest high-profile major champion to move to Saudi Arabia; he follows in the footsteps of major winners Dustin Johnson, Brooks Koepka, and Phil Mickelson.

They signed a big contract to make the jump, just like Rahm, but none bigger than the one given to the current green jacket winner. The mouthwatering sum was too good to refuse for the Spaniard, and Harrington thinks Rahm’s capture is well worth the money.

“This [Rahm’s signing] is the biggest player [LIV Golf] have got, the biggest shift,” the Irishman stated to Mirror Sport. They didn’t overpay for Jon Rahm because it was seismic the shift in people’s opinion with him going. You could argue with other players, but Rahm is a stalwart and he stated he wasn’t going.

“He may not be the best player in the world right now, but it appears that he will rank in the top two or three for the next ten years.” It was well worth it, whatever they had to pay for him.” Harrington acknowledged that LIV made a smart business decision in luring one of the top players in the world, but he also thought the deal might have some long-term effects.

Rahm is not the first to sign a big contract; after their move, Mickelson and company also signed deals worth more than £100 million. Of course, none are larger than the Spaniard’s, but since the Saudis are willing to pay, this may make LIV’s current roster and any new players eager for more.

Harrington continued, “I find it interesting that it establishes a very high anchor price for both present and future players who plan to renegotiate.” “They haven’t bought the players for life; they will renegotiate every three years for the ones that are there.”

For LIV as well, the issues might not end there. Following the announcement of the shock framework agreement in June of last year, the PGA Tour is currently in the midst of negotiations with the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia (PIF) to finally collaborate with their LIV rivals.

It is anticipated that the Tour will reinstate the players it had previously suspended for switching to Saudi Arabia as part of the agreement. Thus, Harrington believes that the players’ negotiating power will only increase if the PGA Tour can soon guarantee LIV’s star men a spot back on the circuit.

“It makes them very expensive for LIV as long as the PGA Tour gives the LIV players some way back,” he said. “They don’t have a great negotiating plate if guys come to renegotiate and they only have LIV. If they have this route back to the Tour, it indicates that their cost to LIV is high, even if the PGA Tour says, “Yes, you can return and we won’t penalize you excessively.”

The ongoing saga of men’s professional golf has its latest chapter in the ongoing negotiations between the Tour and PIF. The parties involved recently missed the deadline of December 31 to finalize a deal. Harrington has proposed an independent adjudicator who is not involved in the game of golf as a way to ultimately resolve the agreement, as frustrations within the game continue to mount.

“Someone independent needs to lay down the rules,” he continued. Due to their mutual bias, it will be difficult for the two sides to negotiate amongst themselves. Someone in the sports world who is unrelated to golf must say, “Okay, this is what you are going to do.”

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