The move has been promised by all of the potential PGA Tour contenders that have emerged in recent years, but so far the only league that has done anything substantial is one that currently boasts all of the best players in the world. The PGA Tour intends to implement big-ticket events for its top stars, who will receive guaranteed money to show up no matter where they end up in the leaderboards, according to Golfweek.
This is equivalent to the current events of the World Golf Championship, except that the money would apparently be guaranteed whether a player wins or finishes 50th. In addition, the events would be exclusively organized on an international scale.
The Tour intends to host between four and six events per year outside of the United States, Europe, Asia and the Middle East. The series will begin no earlier than fall 2023, but possibly not until 2024. Details of the plan have been confirmed at Golf week by an industry executive familiar with the ongoing discussions. The executive requested anonymity because he is not authorized to discuss the matter publicly.
The PGA Tour has now taken several steps (or implied future moves) to compete against the Premier Golf League and the Super Golf League, both of which have proven to be candidates to plunder the PGA Tour its most valuable assets, the golfers. renowned.
At the end of 2020, a strategic alliance was formed with the European Tour which resulted in a co-sanctioned Scottish Open for 2022. The $ 40 million Player Impact program was implemented earlier this season. It rewards players based on their popularity using a variety of measurable factors. The Players Championship purse was recently increased from $ 15 million to $ 20 million. The Tour also recently implemented a program in which players receive an additional $ 50,000 for playing at least 15 events in a given season.
And now this.
“I think with things like the Player Impact Program and scholarships and everything going up, I think it becomes that way. [stars being compensated appropriately]Justin Thomas said last week. âNo matter what you do or what sport you play or whatever, there will always be a handful or a group of guys who are pushing the income or pushing the interest. “
Will all of this work for the PGA Tour? It’s hard to imagine the opposite. The PGA Tour sweetens the pot for their top players, those who might be drawn to the deep Saudi pockets of the Super Golf League or the intrigue of team golf offered by the Premier Golf League. (Remember, there are two separate leagues vying for the attention of these players.)
The most pressing threat appears to be the Super Golf League, the one with the money from Golf Saudi, which also recently helped fund LIV Golf Investments of which Greg Norman is the new CEO. LIV Golf is funding a series of 10 events on the Asian Tour and hired former PGA Tour Rules Official Slugger White as vice president of competition rules and management. His investment in the Asian Tour is presumably separate from any super leagues he could form if he manages to attract enough better players. Norman would serve as this league’s commissioner in addition to his duties as CEO of LIV Golf.
This brings us back to the PGA Tour. Here is Golfweek again on what a fall roster for top players might look like as the PGA Tour tries to hold onto its superstars and build their way into the future.
As internal discussions continue on details, provisional plans call for between four and six events, with fields limited to 50 or 60 competitors and no cuts midway. It has not been decided whether the courses will be determined by the official world golf rankings or the FedEx Cup rankings. A range of format options are being considered, including the possibility of a team component.
This all reminds me of quotes from Seth Waugh from the PGA Championship earlier in 2021. Waugh is the CEO of the PGA of America (separate from the PGA Tour), which manages the PGA Championship, and along with the European Tour, the Ryder Cup. Here’s what the former CEO of Deutsche Bank Americas had to say about the competition.
âI come from a world of disruption, and I think it’s inevitable – I actually think it’s healthy,â Waugh said. âYou disrupt or you are disrupted. That’s what it is.â¦ You know, if this is a hostile takeover of the game, I think it’s way too far away. They created it. this conversation, which by the way is not new, has existed since 2014 in different forms; [it] created the change. He created an alliance between the European Tour and the PGA Tour, which we think is really healthy for the game.
âI think you just have to be careful what you wish for. If it’s a better way to watch a game, if a team format or fewer playersâ¦ they should talk about it as an industry and ask themselves. if there are better ways to run tournaments. But I don’t think anything is really broken so I’m not sure what the resolution is totally, other than an outside body trying to disrupt and disrupt. getting into the game in a way that I don’t think is in the long term interests of the game “
Waugh spoke widely of threats outside the PGA Tour, but the same general concept applies. The Tour has apparently strengthened its position, and now the question is whether it can simultaneously improve its product while spending money to protect itself from the competition.
It’s good that players get paid more money, at least on the surface, but there are always costs for such moves. It will be interesting to see how the Tour handles the situation and what response the other proposed leagues might have to this news, if at all. At this point there was a lot of noise outside, but the PGA Tour was the only one to move.