Amidst the PGA Tour vs LIV Golf controversy, there has been one name who has been front and center of it all, Greg Norman.
The former PGA Tour star joined forces with Saudi investors to create the rival Tour, with the hopes of creating a new order in the golfing world. While LIV Golf had a surprisingly successful year, thanks in large part due to the recruitment of stars like Cameron Smith, Dustin Johnson, and Bryson DeChambeau, it still may not have been enough to save Norman’s job.
Rumors have recently circulated that Greg Norman may soon be ousted as LIV Golf’s commissioner. His replacement? Former TaylorMade CEO Mark King, a powerful force in the golf and marketing community.
This does not mean that Norman would leave LIV Golf altogether, but rather transition into a different role. Even though LIV Golf was quick to deny these rumors, it hasn’t stopped continued speculation about his future.
"“Greg Norman is our CEO and Commissioner. Any suggestion that changes are being made to Greg’s title or role is patently false.” – Majed Al-Sorour"
As might be expected, many are not quick to take the word of the leadership of this controversial Tour at face value. Now, PGA Tour golfers are also responding to the rumors, including star Rory McIlroy. The Northern Irishman has gone as far as to suggest that Greg Norman should take matters into his own hands and quit.
"“Greg needs to go. He’s made his mark, but I think now is the right time to say you’ve got this thing off ground. No one’s going to talk unless there’s an adult in the room that can actually try to mend fences.” – Rory McIlroy"
If you ask me, Rory McIlroy is spot on. The relationship between the PGA Tour and LIV Golf, as well as current commissioners Jay Monahan and Greg Norman, is past saving. These two could never sit in the same room and work towards a compromise.
If both Tours are to have any hope of co-existing, one of them needs to go, and it won’t be Monahan.
Greg Norman continues to take shots at the PGA
Even with all the negative attention, it still has not stopped Norman from taking shots at the PGA Tour.
Since the Player Impact Program (PIP) rankings have come out, shining focus on Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy, it has taken some of the spotlight off of LIV Golf. Meanwhile, Greg Norman thinks LIV Golf deserves some credit for the PIP claiming that:
"“Every PGA Tour player should be thanking LIV, including Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy. The PIP [player impact] program wouldn’t have been increased without LIV. Prizemoney wouldn’t have been increased without LIV.”"
It’s clear that Greg Norman, once a star in the sport, was a pioneer in creating a true rival against his former Tour. Still, even with his effort, it may not be enough to save his job.
It will be interesting to see who is the LIV Golf commissioner when they kick off their second season in the New Year.