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#pounditFriday, March 31, 2023

Golf legend rips Cam Smith for joining LIV

Cameron Smith picks up his ball

January 14, 2022; Honolulu, Hawaii, USA; Cameron Smith acknowledges the crowd after making his putt on the 10th hole during the second round of the Sony Open in Hawaii golf tournament at Waialae Country Club. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

A golf legend ripped Cameron Smith over the 29-year-old’s move to LIV Golf.

LIV Golf on Tuesday announced the addition of Smith, as well as several other notable golfers.

Golf legend Gary Player says he understands why some players have chosen to join LIV, but he thinks it was a bad move for Smith.


Player believes that a golfer of Smith’s quality, who is in his prime, should be playing where the best competition and most history/prestige are — the PGA Tour.

Player, 86, made his comments during an interview with BBC Radio 5 Live Wednesday morning.

“I was absolutely shocked to hear Cameron Smith [had joined LIV Golf],” Player said during the interview, as shared by Golf Monthly. “Here’s a young man that I really thought was going to be a superstar. Now, what sort of future does he have? Will he be allowed to play in majors in the future? Will he be able to realize this great dream of being a champion? I don’t know.”

Smith cited the easier playing schedule as a big reason why he joined LIV. Player does not seem to think much of that reason.

“I’ve played golf all my life and I wouldn’t take a billion dollars for my nine majors on both tours,” Player said. “The only man to win the grand slam on both tours and 165 tournaments. I worked hard. I had a desire. I traveled the world, it was an education. I met wonderful people. How can you ever be a champion playing 54 holes with no cut?”

Simth will join LIV for its upcoming event in Boston. The Australian golfer reportedly is receiving over $100 million to sign with the upstart league.

Player says he understands why some golfers have taken the money, but he feels Smith has the wrong priorities.

“I don’t blame (Henrik) Stenson for going. He had no money, so he had to go. This superstar [Cam Smith], I think his advisors have given him the wrong advice. I don’t blame players for going on the LIV tour. Most of the players can’t win on the regular tour anymore. The PGA Tour will always be the major tour.”

As the winner of 160 events during his pro career, Player knows what he is talking about. He certainly seemed to be right with his advice for Rory McIlroy several years ago. Only time will tell whether Smith will end up regretting his move.

Smith has won five times on the PGA Tour since January 2020 and four times since April 2021. He seems to be hitting his stride, and now he is giving that up to go to LIV.

H/T Barstool Sports


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