CHARLOTTE, NC – At the Genesis Invitational in February, players were considering the advantages of the LIV in public for the first time. Tiger Woods made his pro-PGA Tour stance known. Jon Ram pledged allegiance to the tour. Max Homma explained the allure of playing the ring he grew up watching. Rory McIlroy called Liv “dead in the water”.
But Adam Scott? He had an open mind.
“Depending on your golf goals, I think the schedule is very attractive,” Scott said At his pre-tournament press conference that week. “On that side of things, I will definitely. In terms of things, yes.”
As the summer wore on, LIV signed on to a handful of Scott’s contemporaries. Louis Oosthuizen, Charles Schwarzl, Sergio Garcia and Graeme McDowell were among those who fit a similar profile who signed up for the tournament’s first event in London. As a famous 40-year-old international player and Masters winner, he appeared to be in the wheelhouse of LIV.
But even as more names came out, Scott wasn’t among them. Instead, he’s been increasingly breathing with the PGA Tour. He was present at the players meeting in Delaware. He praised the changes that came out of it. When Joaquin Niemann’s pick came to the wire for the Tour Championship, he played a practice tour with Scott. No doubt the two had a lot to discuss.
This week, 42-year-old Scott will represent Australia in his 10th Presidents Cup. Most of his teammates are juniors. And no one avoids the fact that a lot of potential colleagues have joined LIV. The most recent batch included jumping Neiman and two Scott nationals: Mark Leishman and Cameron Smith.
When Scott took to the podium on Tuesday, I asked him why he hadn’t joined them.
“Well, it’s such a big conversation that I don’t think I should get into at the moment,” he began.
But then it continued.
“That’s what it is,” he said. “They do what they want to do and the PGA Tour will continue to do what they are doing and will try to come up with the best product. Why am I still on the PGA Tour because it suits me better to stay on the PGA Tour. It’s really that simple. The only thing I didn’t understand was giving up my career completely and trying to achieve these things here and leave them behind. I’m obviously not ready to do that.”
Then he smiled.
“I may never be clear. I just think it’s a hitch—well, it wasn’t really given to me, anyway.”
Let’s analyze through it. Scott’s assessment of LIV is interesting because he is not automatically against the idea. But it’s been through so much in the current PGA Tour ecosystem that it’s hard to let go. That was the phrase that stuck in my mind. leave it behind. Much of the LIV-PGA Tour’s speech sounds like a screamer. Scott’s version is clear. His distinctions are accurate. And it’s romantic too.
The logic echoed what Woods said, who explained that his loyalty to the PGA Tour comes in part from his own experiences. “This is where my legacy is,” Woods said last winter. Scott wandered down memory lane in media availability on Tuesday, enjoying the trophies since his debut in 2003.
That doesn’t mean the split has been settled in Scott’s mind. It just meant he had to stay as focused as possible. When asked about LIV’s pursuit of world ranking points, we mentioned that like anyone in the golf world, there was nothing else on his mind.
“I had to stop thinking about it, to be honest. It’s not really my business, and it’s not my priority to think about it.”
“I don’t know. There are standards. If they meet him, then yes. If they don’t, they will have to figure out how to meet the standards. In general, I just hope that all of this is objective and clear, and everything is fair either way is what I hope, because I think that That’s what we’ve always thought golf represented.”
This does not mean that LIV has finished stalking Scott. Australian Fellow, LIV CEO and Commissioner Greg Norman was asked by Sydney Morning Herald Whether the department is still interested in Scott. That decision, he said, is partly up to Smith and Leishman.
“How do I answer that question? There were discussions early on with Adam and I think at the moment with Mark and Cam being the Australia team managers, I think quite frankly it’s up to them,” he said. Scott gave Interview to me Announces like that. The gist of it was the same message he sent in the press room at Quail Hollow: He’s not ready to leave.
He said, “I’ve been really focused on majors for 20 years and for me it wasn’t an overnight decision to say, ‘Okay, my mind has changed now after 20 years. It develops and stabilizes. We’ll find out where we end up and what’s going on. I’ve tried, at least for the past two months, to remove the feelings and do what I can do, which is play golf.”
His next chance to do so comes on Thursday.