So, I’m wondering at what point do we collectively say this guy is Tiger 2.0, or the next Jack Nicklaus? Not that anyone is in a big rush. Well, actually some people are, which is par for the course in our brave new media world.
Longtime observer Alistair Tait of Golfweek is extremely impressed.
“Rory McIlroy is right where he belongs,” Tait wrote after the world No. 1 wrapped up his latest conquest in Dubai, “in a league of his own. That’s the way it’s always been.”
Tait has watched Rory since the talented Irishman was 14. He had heard the hype about young McIlroy and wasn’t a true believer at the time, but he became one and can’t help but gush about golf’s new king. “What surprises me most about McIlroy’s climb to the top of the world pecking order is the way he has left others in his dust,” Tait said.
Another thing that sets Rory apart, noted Tait, is his approach to coaching. He has stuck with Michael Bannon from the beginning and takes an evolutionary approach to his golf swing, arguably the best natural golf swing to come along in a long time.
Tait also conceded that the media-hyped McIlroy-Woods rivalry “might just be a pipe dream.” Tiger might end up wheezing in Rory’s dust.
Are you ready to put Rory in the same exalted category as Tiger or Jack? Or even a Ben Hogan or Sam Snead?
I’m cautious about next-great proclamations. I think Rory is a great player, and can continue to be great, piling up majors—if there are no major slips or falls. But there is still a very long road ahead for this 23-year-old, no?