Rory McIlroy buries Ryder Cup beef with Joe LaCava with a pint and a chat

Rory McIlroy buries Ryder Cup beef with Joe LaCava with a pint and a chat

Rory McIlroy’s feud with Joe LaCava is a thing of the past.

Immediately after Europe defeated the United States in the 2023 Ryder Cup, LaCava hashed things out with McIlroy.

The two friends had a discussion over a pint, according to a report from BBC Sport.

“Things happen in the heat of the moment; tensions were high,” McIlroy said.

“Joe LaCava came into the European team room on Sunday night and had a drink and a chat.”

LaCava, who used to caddy for Tiger Woods, now loops for Patrick Cantlay, who was at the center of a pay-for-play controversy at last month’s Ryder Cup.

Cantlay’s refusal to wear a hat caused quite a commotion on Saturday at Marco Simone, as European fans constantly waved their caps towards him. The former UCLA Bruin supposedly went cap-less to protest against the PGA of America’s compensation rules—or lack thereof.

Alas, on the 18th green, Cantlay holed a 43-foot putt to win his match over McIlroy. That caused LaCava to wave his hat in celebration, but his act came too close to McIlroy’s putting line as the Northern Irishman still faced a 20-footer to square the match. He subsequently missed, which gave the Americans a 3 & 1 victory in the afternoon session—the only session Team USA won during this year’s Ryder Cup.

Ryder Cup, Joe LaCava, Rory McIlroy

Joe LaCava waves his hat while a frustrated Rory McIlroy looks on.
Photo by Zac Goodwin/Getty Images

That led to McIlroy getting heated in the parking lot after the round, but the Northern Irishman used that incident to fire his team up the next day.

“For me, the incident happened; I purposely didn’t want to meet anyone on Sunday morning because I wanted what had happened to fuel me for that day,” McIlroy said.

“My whole focus was let’s make sure Europe wins the Ryder Cup, and then we will sort all the other stuff out afterward.”

The move paid off, as Europe went on to win decisively, 16.5-to-11.5.

“I’ve had a great relationship with Joe over the years when he caddied for Tiger, and that wasn’t going to change,” McIlroy added.

“And it’s all fine. We’re all friends now.”

Jack Milko is a golf staff writer for SB Nation’s Playing Through. You can follow him on Twitter @jack_milko for more golf coverage. Be sure to check out @_PlayingThrough too.

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