Anthony Kim opens up on ‘very dark moments’ after returning to golf with LIV

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Anthony Kim opened up about his multiple surgeries and troubles with addiction as he spoke in depth for the first time since his return to professional following a 12-year hiatus.

Kim experienced a rapid rise to stardom on the PGA Tour in the early 2010s but vanished from professional golf in 2012, reportedly cashing in an eight-figure insuance payout as he struggled with a several major injuries.

The American, though, made a dramatic return to professional golf earlier this year, signing as a wild card for the Saudi-backed LIV Golf in February last year. Now, the 38-year-old has spoken on record for the first time since his return and lifted the lid on his “dark moments” while away from the sport.

“I’ve had some very dark moments. I’ve had some very low moments. I felt very alone, even when there’s a million people around. I needed to get my mind on straight and figure out what my purpose was on this planet,” Kim said speaking to David Feherty on LIV Golf Plus.

Kim was frank about his troubles with addiction during his hiatus and admitted he was, at points, surrounded by bad people and “scam artists” who took advantage of him. In his time off, he also underwent spinal fusion as well as surgery on his shoulder and hand but was was unable to address the specificis surrounding his rumoured financial settelment.

“I know public perception is that I took this money and ran and decided I was just going to hang out,” he said. “That wasn’t the case at all. I had multiple, multiple surgeries in a few years. And my body is still not what it used to be.’’

Kim also revealed he was approached by the PGA Tour about a potential return but decided to join LIV after a phone call with comissioner Greg Norman. Despite teeing it up in his first event in March, the American revealed he only started playing golf again three months prior when his wife took up the sport.

“Really my wife is the reason I started playing golf again,” he admitted. “She wanted to learn the game. I said ‘this is not what you want to do. You’ll end up tearing your hair out’, but fortunately for me and her she stuck with it and really wanted to get better so I started spending a little bit more time on the golf course and that got me interested in playing again.”

“I have an interesting relationship with golf. I don’t think I ever loved it. What’s very weird to me right now is that I’m falling in love with the game,” he continued. “That’s such a weird spot for me because golf was filled with pressure and lots of different emotions for me because my family had to go through a lot to give me this opportunity to play golf.

“With that added pressure I was willing to risk a lot more. That was my nature. I was aggressive on the course and I was aggressive off the golf course. And that led to my demise.”

Kim finished last in his maiden LIV event in Jeddah before finishing 50th in the 54-man field at the Hong Kong event. He will make his first appearence in the United States in 12 years at this week’s LIV Miami and still holds out hope of being able to rediscover his best.

“I believe I can absolutely do it at that level again. I’m prepared more than ever for success,” he explained. “I don’t think in my first career I was because I didn’t know what to expect. It was my mistakes that are the reason that I fell down into this deep hole. Having better people around this time around definitely helps.”