Rory McIlroy withdraws from Medalist member-guest with Tiger Woods, Michael Jordan

Warren Little

Rory McIlroy gives up his spot as Michael Jordan’s partner in the Medalist GC member-guest tourney to Keegan Bradley.

Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy won’t be going at it this week in the Medalist GC member-guest tourney after all. Seems the world No. 1 has withdrawn from the foursome that will include Michael Jordan and Ahmad Rashad in favor of Keegan Bradley.

McIlroy’s decision to play a friendly round with the guys created a Twitter tumult, according to GolfChannel.com’s Rex Hoggard, who said critics were displeased that the top-ranked golfer would tee it up with His Airness and not at next week’s Arnold Palmer Invitational.

Hoggard made a convincing argument about the need for the two-time major champ to pace himself throughout a long PGA Tour season and since we were oblivious to the online agita, all we can do is endorse his sentiments and echo what appeared to be McIlroy’s last tweet on the matter.

On the bright side of the e-fishbowl in which McIlroy lives and toils, the young Ulsterman won’t have to nod politely and smile when the six-time NBA world champion offers his sage advice about competing and winning. Jordan, who has been a Tiger favorite for some time, has recently become the go-to guy for Luke Donald and Ernie Els as well when it comes to tips about life and play as an elite athlete.

“Just like a free throw,” Jordan told Els recently after the Big Easy took $150 from him on a putting wager, according to ProBasketballTalk. “You need the right fundamentals, like to make sure you extend. But you should never be defensive, never assume you’re going to miss it, never think, ‘What if?’”

No doubt, Jordan knows what it takes to maintain mental toughness as the world’s best at what he did. But we’re guessing that what McIlroy, who’s heard enough naysaying for a lifetime after a rocky start to his 2013 season, does not need is another mouth -- even that of a reported 4-handicapper -- yapping in his ear.

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