Can Rory McIlroy finally complete the career Grand Slam? Let's look at McIlroy's best opportunities to win a major in 2023.
The timing could not be better to discuss Rory McIlroy's potential in 2023.
He entered the final round of the Tour Championship at East Lake Golf Club six shots behind reigning Masters champion Scottie Scheffler. His outlook seemed grim, but McIlroy would still chase down Scheffler, shooting minus-4 during the final round while collecting a cool $18 million. The money is nice, but the victory felt poetic after Cameron Smith caught McIlroy on the back nine at the Open.
With the Tour Championship signaling the end of the 2022 PGA Tour season, let's turn our attention to 2023, and what event gives McIlroy the best opportunity to win his first major since 2014.
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Rory McIlroy Odds to Win at Each 2023 Major
Rory McIlroy Best Bet to Win a Major in 2023
The Masters (+1000 via FanDuel Sportsbook)
McIlroy was stellar in all four majors during the 2022 season, even though he didn't earn a victory.
Here are his finishing positions:
- The Masters: Second
- PGA Championship: Eighth
- U.S. Open: T-5
- Open Championship: Third
Those results would represent a career year for nearly every player on tour, but a win is expected when you possess McIlroy's talent and pedigree. He ranked second and third in 2022 in both SG: Off-the-Tee and Tee-to-Green. Additionally, he produced a career-best putting season, ranking 16th in strokes gained. His game has been better than ever.
McIlroy's career started fast, as he won during every major except The Masters. The Northern Irishman came close to winning the green jacket in 2011 before famously blowing a four-stroke lead during the final round. However, the pressure as a then-21-year-old was immense, so that outcome is understandable. Thinking of what I was doing at 21 compared to Rory is depressing, so we'll cut him some slack.
McIlroy showed a glimpse of what he can do during the 2022 Masters, shooting a career tournament low 64 on Sunday. It was a little too late to get close to eventual winner Scheffler, but his surge may be a sign of what's to come.
The veteran has finished in the top 10 at the Masters six times since winning his first three majors. That trend is tough to ignore.
He's coming off one of his best career seasons in 2022. McIlroy topped it off with a fantastic comeback triumph at the Tour Championship while showing the moxie and talent that only a handful of players on tour possess.
McIlroy now carries exceptional momentum heading into 2023. He could become only the sixth player in tour history to complete the career grand slam, and there's good reason to believe the 33-year-old will take the Masters.
If you don't think he can get it done at Augusta, turn your attention to The Open Championship, which is returning to Royal Liverpool for the first time since 2014.
Any idea who won it that year? McIlroy.