- Reaction score
Oh the Saudis aren't gonna pull the plug in a year or two but they could revisit where this is heading in 3-4 years. As I said, the LIV Golf COO admitted in an interview that they need to act like a real tour at some point with real sponsors and some sort of broadcast deal. He wouldn't be saying that if the Saudis were gonna just throw hundreds of millions at the tour each year for eternity.
Coup after coup? They pulled a small handful of bigger names - Johnson, Koepka, DeChambeau and some aging guys like Mickelson and Garcia looking to cash those last big checks. But the vast majority of the Top 20 in golf, Top 30 are still with the PGA Tour. Even if Cam Smith bolts, which would be a coup for sure, the majority of the world's best players are still with the PGA, not LIV. And as I said, if LIV doesn't peel off a bunch of top names after the Tour Championship, it seems unlikely they will be able to do it in the future as the PGA begins to pay more, etc.
And the Masters could follow the PGA Championship. In the lawsuit filed by Mickelson and others, they claimed that Masters officials tried to talk golfers out of joining LIV. So if that's true, it could be a sign the Masters might be leaning towards limiting LIV golfers. Further, the other big factor here is Official World Golf Rankings. If LIV doesn't quality for OGWR points, it might be tough for some of the LIV golfers to even qualify for the majors.
Cam Smith is bolting. They kicked him out of the Fed Ex cup competition for a reason. It may not be "official" but its happening. Mickelson, Garcia, Kopka, Dechambeau, Dustin Johnson....... these represent a huge chunk of the PGA's star power. Phil and Garcia might not be at their peak, but they draw viewers. There is no question LIV golf is having a huge impact on the PGA Tour. Thats why you have these player summits and all this new money being thrown at players by the tour.
The question is why can't LIV land a TV deal? It might be that the PGA Tour is having them blackballed which could result in a huge anti-trust judgement. It seems odd that an event with so many famous golfers can't land a TV deal. The saudis will throw money at it until they do.
The ultimate solution is obvious. Drop the suspensions and let players choose where they want to play any given week. The strong arming and intimidation didn't work and its not going to work.