Jon Rahm Says PGA Tour Players Should Be 'Thankful' For LIV Golf Pushing The Tour Into Making Changes

It's no secret that the threat of LIV Golf has forced the PGA Tour's hand into making various changes, and now that the Saudi-backed circuit has been around for a full season, Tour players are openly thanking LIV for how it has impacted the Tour.

Jon Rahm is the latest PGA Tour star who has tipped his cap in the direction of LIV Golf.

Speaking ahead of this week's Players championship - the flagship event of the Tour - the Spaniard shared his honest assessment of the situation.

"Oh, it's LIV Golf. I mean, without a doubt," Rahm said after being asked what has caused the PGA Tour to make so many changes.

"Without LIV Golf, this wouldn't have happened. So to an extent, like I've said before, we should be thankful this threat has made the PGA TOUR want to change things. I think I said it last week, as well; I wish it didn't come to the PGA TOUR being, you know, under fire from somebody else to make those changes and make things better for the players, but I guess it is what we needed. So, yeah, it is because of LIV Golf, otherwise we wouldn't have seen any of this."

One of the most impactful changes the PGA Tour has made is the introduction of designated events with significantly increased purses on the line. This week's Players will be the fifth designated even of the season while more will be introduced next season, some of which will be no-cut, limited field tournaments.

Jordan Spieth shared a similar message about LIV's impact on the Tour just last week during the Arnold Palmer Invitational.

“I would be lying if I said that we would have gone through this without LIV,” Spieth explained. “But at the same time, we haven’t mentioned them in any of our discussions on what we think’s best for the Tour.”

One of the biggest questions to come after the Tour’s announcement of designated events last year was when, if ever, was it planning on introducing these types of events with $20 million purses.

Spieth’s comments, and Rahm's to an extent, make it sound that the changes weren’t even close to being on the table until LIV Golf emerged.

Follow Mark Harris on Twitter @ItIsMarkHarris

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Mark covers all sports at OutKick while keeping a close eye on the world of professional golf. He graduated from the University of Tennessee-Chattanooga before earning his master's degree in journalism from the University of Tennessee. He somehow survived living in Knoxville despite ‘Rocky Top’ being his least favorite song ever written. Before joining OutKick, he wrote for various outlets including SB Nation, The Spun, and BroBible. Mark was also a writer for the Chicago Cubs Double-A affiliate in 2016 when the team won the World Series. He's still waiting for his championship ring to arrive. Follow him on Twitter @itismarkharris.