What The New PGA Tour, LIV, DP World Tour Deal Means

LIV Golf Flag, LIV Golf Tulsa Invitational,(Photo by Ian Maule/Getty Images)
LIV Golf Flag, LIV Golf Tulsa Invitational,(Photo by Ian Maule/Getty Images) /

The new deal between the PGA Tour, DP Tour, and LIV will give armchair golf experts a ton of fodder for the next month or so.

However, we won’t be kept waiting long as they expect the details to be worked out within the next few weeks, not months. We might know by the British Open.

However, what it means to each of the parties, the PGA Tour, PIF Fund, and DP World Tour is different.

Here are sweet 16 points to consider:

1. First of all, it legitimizes the influence of the Saudis in golf.  A lot of people won’t like that, mainly because of the way they did it. They could have done something similar without all this aggravation, but as Yasir Al-Rumayyan governor of the Public Investment Fund (PIF) said on CNBC, by waiting, they have a bigger impact in golf.  He’s right about that. Bigger temporary headline anyway.

2. This is more of a face-saving move for the Saudis. The PGA Tour and DP World Tour are more than willing to let that happen because it resolves the bigger issue and gets them money to expand and – in the case of the DP World Tour — become more solid, financially, for a while at least.

3. The PGA Tour gets to create a new entity, the LLC with DP World Tour and the Saudi PIF Fund, and run it. Or the big get bigger.

The lawsuit brought by the Saudi PIF Fund goes away.

4. The lawsuit brought by the Saudi PIF Fund goes away. The countersuit by the PGA goes away.  This is good for everybody except the lawyers.

5. The Saudi/PIF Fund doesn’t have to reveal the inner workings of their organization, which they might have been required to do in the lawsuit that was making its way through the liberal 9th circuit.  They were in the midst of a delay tactic to avoid having their business methods revealed to the public, which would happen in a U.S. court proceeding.  Just assume there’s stuff they don’t want us to know.

6. The Tour has a giant stack of lawyers who can now focus on something else, like the fine print of this deal.

7. Greg Norman may be persona non grata with two tours, unless the goal was to raise such a stink that the rest of the golf universe had to take the PIF Fund seriously.  Maybe the goal was to get a deal with the Tour, in which case the PIF Fund wins.

8. We have to figure out who’s on first.  If the entities are combining, then what does a victory on the PGA Tour mean, versus the DP World Tour, versus the Asian Tour?

9. The World Golf Rankings may have to be reconfigured, and goodness knows they need to be.

LIV Golfers Rejoining PGA Tour?

10. We get some players back, if the Tour wants them, but it may be a while before they can play in PGA tour events again. The handbook says a year, but who knows if that will change.

11. Brooks Koepka, who has said he really joined the LIV Tour because he wasn’t sure he would be able to play golf for much longer, gets to return to the PGA Tour. That’s probably a two-way win.

12. Phil Mickelson may have to engage in the biggest bridge-building project ever.  He’s burned every one he ever had. Same for Sergio Garcia. He needs to hire a real PR expert.

13. Bryson DeChambeau may get his old sponsors back, and he’s at least avoided massive name-calling.

14. We will likely get some interesting new events, teams and not teams, in different parts of the world.

15. It might allow the DP World Tour to have disaffected European LIV golf members in the Ryder Cup, but it doesn’t affect the US players because the Ryder Cup is half owned by the PGA of America and half by the DP World Tour.

16. It’s a good time to remember the day that Nabisco decided to pull out of sponsoring the PGA Tour. They had a multi-year deal involving one of the biggest paydays of the year, the Tour Championship, as well as several other aspects of several events.  When they walked out, there were big holes to fill, financially, on both the PGA Tour and the PGA Tour Champions. In other words, what happens if the Saudis change their mind?

Next. Mergers happen in sports, this is just the latest one. dark

And finally, it goes without saying, we still haven’t forgotten about 9/11. Nobody who is a U.S. citizen and was old enough to see what was going on that day will. No matter how much money is spent. The 9/11 attack is up there with Pearl Harbor.  You can’t buy a life back.  You just can’t.