I was shocked to see that. Some painful tooth! Would he have wd'd if he was in the Top 10? No way.
I'm not concerned with Rory and I believe he'll play well in the near future, but I am a little surprised how rough it's been for him to start the year. Changing equipment is a big deal, but with all the technology today I didn't think it'd be too difficult for him.
Here's my take on switching clubs. Last year, I switched from Cleveland to Titleist. Switching irons is pretty seemless. The wedges were a big concern, but that quickly evaporated after trying the new ones. In fact, I strongly believe Vokey makes the best wedges. They're awesome.
Now, onto the driver, 3W, and putter. Switching drivers nowadays isn't that difficult. Trackman displays all the important stats and it's not that difficult to get the right loft, shaft, etc., especially when you're the #1 player in the world. The 3W is a bit different though. 3 woods are, in many professionals opinion, the toughest club to find. It's hard to find one that you like off the tee and the ground. And in Rory's case, he had a Titleist 3W that he hit about 290 in the fairway most of the time. A great go-to club!
Now the putter. I've been using the same putter for 20 years, a Wilson 8802. I personally didn't consider switching putters. And Rory shouldn't have either. Too many switches at once can cause some doubt. The putter, obviously, is a sensitive subject for golfers. Rory should use what's comfortable and gradually switch to a Nike putter when he's ready, similar to what Tiger has done. In fact, it took Tiger quite a few years before he made the switch.
Balls. I played Titleist forever, then switched to Srixon, then back to Titleist. Surprisingly, I didn't have any issues. Both make great golf balls. The balls are so good nowadays. I will say I'm not a huge fan of Callaway balls. They feel hard around the greens. I haven't tried the Nike ball that Rory and Tiger are playing.
If I was Rory, I would've said I'll play the driver, irons, and wedges. And I'll use the ball. But, I won't switch to the 3W and putter until I'm ready. Obviously, lots of $$$ had something to do with his options.
Can't wait to see the drama unfold at this year's Masters..........