Rory McIlroy has an A+ Michael Block story from the PGA Championship

Call Rory McIlroy a skeptic of Michael Block’s now-infamous take that he could be the best player in the world with McIlroy’s driving game.

“Whether he would be No. 1 in the World, I find that hard to believe,” McIlroy told GOLF’s Subpar co-hosts Colt Knost and Drew Stoltz on this week’s episode.

Block was the Cinderella story in golf this year when, as a club pro competing in the PGA Championship, he played his way into contention at Oak Hill, earning a final-round pairing with McIlroy. On Sunday, with the world watching, the 46-year-old made an ace on his way to a stunning T15 finish. He made a crucial up-and-down on the 72nd hole to secure an invite back to next year’s PGA at Valhalla.

That scramble at the last was part of a long list of brilliant play around the greens from Block, who struggled to keep up off the tee with some of the longest players in the game. After the tournament was over, Block offered in an interview that he felt he could be the best golfer in the world, if only he had McIlroy’s length off the tee.

“Oh, my God, what I would shoot from where Rory hits it would be stupid,” Block said. “I think I’d be one of the best players in the world.”

In their interview, Knost asked what Rory thought of Block’s confidence.

Michael Block
Club pro Michael Block clarifies viral comments about Rory McIlroy’s ‘stupid length’
By: Jessica Marksbury

But McIlroy, the current World No. 2, didn’t appear offended by the comments. Instead, he offered this previously unknown story from their round Sunday at Oak Hill.

On the 72nd hole, Block missed his second shot on the 497-yard, uphill par-4, short and left. The pin was cut tight to the left corner of the green over a bunker. He needed a par to hold onto a top-15 finish and earn a trip back to the 2024 PGA Championship.

“He was down in the crowd and it was a blind shot,” McIlroy recalled. “It was like, there’s no way this guy is getting this thing up and down.”

Block then hit one of the shots of the tournament, landing his ball in the rough between the green and the bunker and letting it release out to eight feet.

Mayhem ensued as Block emerged from the crowd below the 18th and up to the putting surface.

“So Michael comes up onto the green, marks his ball and gives his ball to Harry, my caddie, to clean for him,” McIlroy said. “And Harry asked Blockie, ‘Is your short game usually this good?'”

His response was peak Michael Block.

“He goes, ‘No, it’s usually better,'” McIlroy said.

“It’s great! Like, how much like how much confidence is that?”

We shouldn’t have to tell you, but Block made the putt.

To hear the rest of McIlroy’s Subpar interview, including lots of Ryder Cup talk, more on his round with Block and what might be holding him back at the Masters, check out the link below.

Jack Hirsh Editor

Jack Hirsh is an assistant editor at GOLF. A Pennsylvania native, Jack is a 2020 graduate of Penn State University, earning degrees in broadcast journalism and political science. He was captain of his high school golf team and recently returned to the program to serve as head coach. Jack also still *tries* to remain competitive in local amateurs. Before joining GOLF, Jack spent two years working at a TV station in Bend, Oregon, primarily as a Multimedia Journalist/reporter, but also producing, anchoring and even presenting the weather. He can be reached at