PGA Tour, LIV Golf agree to merge

Ronnie-

Member of the Year
Original poster
Staff member
HERE TO HELP YOU!
Aug 28, 2007
31,828
12,352
mississippi



In a stunning twist to the saga that has consumed golf for the last year, the PGA Tour, the DP World Tour and LIV Golf, the upstart breakaway tour funded by Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund, have agreed to merge.
“After two years of disruption and distraction, this is a historic day for the game we all know and love,” said PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan in a statement. “This transformational partnership recognizes the immeasurable strength of the PGA Tour history, legacy and pro-competitive model and combines with it the DP World Tour and LIV — including the team golf concept — to create an organization that will benefit golf’s players, commercial and charitable partners and fans."
 
The devil is in the details, of course. A sad day for golf, really. Both the PGA Tour and the European Tour (called the DP World Tour for sponsorship reasons) have no owners. The players were the owners. If a player was good enough, they got a "card" and could play. Most of the course workers, parkers, courtesy people volunteered, because the profit from tournaments went to charity.

The changes the "LIV" players wanted were, well, appearance money. Open appearance money has always been a no-no on the tours. You teed it up, and if you won, you won, and if you didn't, you didn't. The "fame" portion of the players' compensation came in sponsorships, what happened on the course was 100% equal opportunity.

Now, if I read this right, the tour is a profit making company that belongs to the CURRENT players and the Saudi government.

Makes me want to volunteer my time and buy the things they say to buy a whole lot.

And, while the TV ratings for the PGA Tour have been off by maybe 20%, there is no evidence that those people are watching LIV, which is rated as an "infomercial" and thus not released to the public. Rather it seems people are just staying away, disgusted by the greed of the LIV players.

Probably should continue that practice.
 
PGA realized they were going to use the anti-trust lawsuit due to excluding players that played in LIV tournaments, and so agreed to merge in order to kill the lawsuit (triple damages would be very expensive).

As it is though, I can't see the courts allowing a merger as a merger between the two would itself violate anti-trust law. NFL & AFL had to get a law passed in order to merge.
 
Anti-trust law actually supported the exclusion of the LIV golfers. Don't play one place, play the other. Simple.

Going forward, you think an NBA player can take a game off and play for the Globetrotters? Of course not.

But this is ALL about appearance money. All. Players not, or no longer, good enough, but still "popular" can get money just to show up.
 
  • Like
Reactions: FTA4PA
Anti-trust law actually supported the exclusion of the LIV golfers. Don't play one place, play the other. Simple.

Going forward, you think an NBA player can take a game off and play for the Globetrotters? Of course not.

But this is ALL about appearance money. All. Players not, or no longer, good enough, but still "popular" can get money just to show up.
Well, I don't think it was as much as they demanded appearance money, it was more that the only way to get golfers to want to play for a fake golf league with no history or clout was to pay huge amounts of guaranteed money.

I'm shocked they decided to merge. Was there even competition between PGA and LIV. Been like the WWE merging with TNA.
 
I'm shocked they decided to merge. Was there even competition between PGA and LIV.
Not much. The first year of LIV was on YouTube, where you can tell how many are watching and they were in the 6, or 5, figures, worldwide. This year, in the US on CW, they had the first two tournaments rated and got among the lowest ratings of the weekend, then reclassified it as an "informercial" so no ratings for the public to see. PGA Tour ratings have been down for some tournaments, maybe 20%, but last week was higher than last year's same week. The live gates have been well papered and nobody was there anyway.

The golf media has ignored the actual play. Very little reporting of the non-business non-legal side of this. My perception is that the golf public really didn't care. The issue, IMHO, is that week in week out golf just isn't big enough to split the audience, even a 99-1 split.

I'm going to have a hard time really caring who wins next year.
 
Anti-trust law actually supported the exclusion of the LIV golfers. Don't play one place, play the other. Simple.
Not really, as the explicit purpose was to damage the competition, especially after they worked with golf clubs to exclude LIV players from those clubs tournaments. That was the whole point of the anti-trust lawsuit.
 
I really don't think the DOJ will allow a merger, they were already after the PGA for banning LIV players, and as a merger will eliminate competition I don't see them allowing for it.


And with DP involved, then the EU competition board will get involved, and their more stringent about antitrust than the US.

Let's not forget that Congress had to pass laws to allow for the NFL-AFL merger to happen. This will likely be no different. And due to anti-Saudi feelings in Congress, I don't see them allowing for the Saudi fund to take over the PGA.
 
The judge considered those theories, and rejected them. Golfers have plenty of ways to make money.

The deal going forward is what Phil Michelson wanted. Appearance money. Before LIV, a player on the US PGA Tour had to ask permission to play elsewhere, which was rarely granted in the regular season. That is gone. There is nothing to keep some guy from tossing up a tournament against some minor PGA Tour event and paying a few top guys to show up, setting up a bidding war.

A war that most sponsors, networks, and tournament organizers (charities) don't want for a sport that pulls down something like a 2.0 in a standard week.

Golf has damaged itself. Which is to say Phil Michelson has damaged it.
 
The judge considered those theories, and rejected them. Golfers have plenty of ways to make money.
Which judge was that? The PGA-LIV lawsuit hasn't gone to trial in the US.

Also movement has already started to block the merger.

And of course there's the players who could file lawsuits themselves to block it, especially as they don't seem to have been consulted about the potential merger.
 
I really miss watching the players who went over to LIV, Dustin Johnson, Talor Gooch, Cam Smith, Brooks Koepka, etc. However, I think the PGA took a stand on principle which I thought was the right thing to do. I revere the history and tradition of the PGA and the prestige which comes with belonging and participating in it.

I'm very disappointed now that the whole discussion has come down to dollars. It seems we as a race have become guided by money. From our leaders to our heroes to ourselves, we have morphed into whores, without regard to what is best for mankind, only what is profitable to us.
 
Which judge was that? The PGA-LIV lawsuit hasn't gone to trial in the US.

Judge Beth Labson Freeman ruled against LIV golfers Talor Gooch, Matt Jones and Hudson Swafford after they sought to force their way into the FedExCup Playoffs. Last week, the trio jointly filed for a temporary restraining order as part a larger antitrust lawsuit against the PGA Tour.

Sorry, anti-trust has nothing to do with this issue.

Congressmen are just pandering to the unwashed.
 
Bill introduced in Congress to strip PGA of it's tax-exempt status.

 
  • Like
Reactions: FTA4PA

Judge Beth Labson Freeman ruled against LIV golfers Talor Gooch, Matt Jones and Hudson Swafford after they sought to force their way into the FedExCup Playoffs. Last week, the trio jointly filed for a temporary restraining order as part a larger antitrust lawsuit against the PGA Tour.

Sorry, anti-trust has nothing to do with this issue.

Congressmen are just pandering to the unwashed.
So the judge only ruled against a restraining order for that particular tournament, but the antitrust case is (at least until the merger news) still in progress.
 

XFL 3.0

MLB forms economic group as regional TV in peril