The new Big Three of Jason Day, Jordan Spieth and Rory McIlroy have their own views on being compared to the second coming of a golfing trio the likes of Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer and Gary Player.
It is, of course, premature to compare these twentysomethings that have won a combined seven majors to the accomplishments of Jack Nicklaus (18 majors), Arnold Palmer (seven) and Gary Player (nine), McIlroy pointed out on 23 September. Yet the young trio have taken turns as world number one over the past month and have won five of the last six majors.
Jordans sort of like Jack, methodical and sort of does everything that way, four-times major winner 26-year-old McIlroy said on the eve of the Tour Championship at East Lake Golf Club. I would be Gary, because Im the smallest. Then I guess that would leave Jason as Arnie. But who knows, well just have to let it all play out and see.
Day, 27, took the question about being in a Big Three with McIlroy and Spieth in an entirely different direction. Its like Jordan Spieth and Rory McIlroy had a baby and I was it, said the Australian, drawing a stunned burst of laughter from the press corps. Because Ive got Rorys length and Im hoping that Ive got Jordans touch.
McIlroy, Day and Spieth all mentioned Players Championship winner Rickie Fowler, who also won the FedExCups Deutsche Bank Championship in September, as belonging in the discussion of dominant players among golfs new wave.
Spieth went even further, shrugging off the moniker of a Big Three, saying it is subject to who is hot. I think that the Big number-whatever-it-is, changes. Ive seen it change week-to-week out here, said 22-year-old Spieth.
There was a Big two, there was Big one, there was Big two, there was a Big three, there was Big two, there was Big four. I mean, Brooks Koepka wins this week, its the Big five. We all respect each other, were all close to each other, were friends, added Spieth.
The fact that five out of the last six majors are won by guys in their 20s and you would consider young, up-and-comers, it just shows that in the biggest stages of what we do, were fearless, and we embrace the opportunity.
McIlroy, whose season was interrupted by injury, said he just wants to get back to winning and does not care about the $10m (£6.55m) that could come with victory at the Tour Championship. Luckily, that amount of money doesnt sort of mean much to me anymore, McIlroy said on the eve of the season-ending Tour Championship that caps the FedExCup play-offs and awards the bonus to the points leader.
It will go in the bank and if I want to buy something nice, I will. I mean like its nice to think that you could win $10m this week, but thats not what excites me. It excites me to play well and to try and win. And the FedExCup is ... one of the only things that I havent put on my golf CV and that would be more exciting to do that rather than walk away with a cheque.
In 2013, McIlroy signed a multi-year endorsement deal with Nike Golf worth a reported $200m, and hes earned more than $28m in his PGA Tour career, not counting tens of millions more from European Tour earnings and more still from other endorsements.