Is Rory McIlroy Risking It All?


Is Rory McIlroy risking his career by returning to competition prematurely?

The PGA Tour is gearing up for it’s final major of the season at Whistling Straits this weekend. The tournament will play host to the best golfers on the planet. And the best of them all will be making a triumphant, if not premature return. Rory McIlroy will look to defend his title at this year’s PGA Championship, only about a month since his well-publicized ankle injury. Is he risking his career in doing so?

McIlroy was kicking a ball around with friends over the 4th of July weekend when he ruptured the ATFL ligament on his left ankle. It’s a very common injury, but not to the extent that McIlroy did it. Go big or go home right? The time-table for recovery to an injury as severe as his is anywhere from a couple weeks, to 4 months, depending on who you talk to. Rory is looking to compete in a major championship in a quarter of that time.

READ MORE:  McIlroy’s Ambitious Rehab Program

Screen shot of Instagram video posted by Rory McIlroy.

One has to admire the heart of a champion. McIlroy won the 2014 PGA Championship at Valhalla Golf Club and he’s hungry to defend his crown. At such an early stage of his career, and life for that matter, is it worth the risk?

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  • There are lessons to be learned from observing those who have come before us. I haven’t googled that line yet, but I’m almost positive someone much smarter that I said it already. If Rory has any interest in basketball, he should be familiar with the great Grant Hill.

    Hill caught the injury bug early in what would have been a Hall of Fame career in the NBA. Hill could score and defend. He could run and jump. But he was never able to check his ego and pride at the door. Hill once played knowing he needed season-ending surgery because it would be the last time to play against Michael Jordan. Numerous surgeries and an infection that almost killed him later, Grant Hill retired with a bum ankle and the agonizing question of What If?

    Hill explained:

    "“One time, I knew I was done for the year, and it would have been the last time I played against Michael Jordan — I knew I would have to have surgery and be done for the season, and I played one quarter.”"

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  • What makes McIlroy great could also be the makings of his demise. The violence of his swing is unmatched by anyone other than Tiger Woods. Mr. Woods caught the injury bug a few years back if you might recall and he’s still in the process of getting back to form years later.

    Does Rory have the ability to turn his swing down a couple notches? And at what cost? Asking Rory McIlroy to take a tentative swing with a golf club would be like telling James Brown to “knock it off with all the screaming.”  Just wouldn’t have the same flare, ya know?

    Grant Hill wanted to compete against the best the game had to offer and it might have cost him his career. I’d argue that Rory’s ego is getting the best of him while watching Jordan Spieth turn the PGA Tour into his own personal playground. I’d give anything to be the angel on McIlroy’s shoulder right about now. I’d say something like: “The game needs you, and trust me, Spieth isn’t going anywhere for a while.”

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