At 38 years old, Anthony Kim is considering a return to professional golf, according to Dylan Dethier. Where he plays that professional golf, however, remains to be seen as it sounds like the PGA Tour and LIV Golf are both considerations for the three-time Tour winner who last played regularly in 2012 before disappearing with a variety of injuries.
Kim was a comet, winning in Charlotte, D.C. and Houston from 2008 to 2010 and making a serious run at the 2010 Masters, where he finished third behind Phil Mickelson and Lee Westwood. He burned too bright, though, and was out of the game by 2013. His last nine starts went like this:
Palm Springs: MCTorrey Pines: MCPhoenix: MCNorthern Trust: DQHonda: T42Valspar: MCArnold Palmer: T66Houston: WDCharlotte: WD
And that was that.
Kim has apparently been speaking with the Tour and with LIV for several months now, according to Dethier. His famous injury insurance policy has been a big part of the discussion and decision-making:
A central issue in negotiations has been an insurance policy from Kim’s playing days, now worth an estimated $10 million, that would be voided if he returned to competition. His decision to try the PGA Tour versus signing a deal with LIV also comes at a tense moment in negotiations between the leagues as they battle for players, attention and leverage as their respective 2024 seasons get underway — all while talks around a potential deal churn on in the background.
Of course, LIV could feasibly pay him whatever he needed to solve the problem. The PGA Tour part of it would be trickier. Kim has not played professionally since he was 26. Would he be good enough to play his way into big-time events and majors? I suspect he would not be, at least initially.
The background of all of this is the proposed merger between the PGA Tour and LIV, which is currently in negotiation. If Kim signs with LIV, how will that work if and when the merger takes place?
For now, it’s a lot of questions. But we do know that Kim is considering what he has not considered for over a decade now. And if the last few years have taught us anything, it’s that where there’s smoke, there is likely something that’s going to come out of it.