The Saudi golf tour: What we know, what we don’t and everything else you might not understand about the proposed new league (2022)

The threat of a competing Saudi Arabia-backed professional golf league has floated like a storm on the game’s horizon for the better part of two years. That storm is no longer on the distance but at the sport’s doorstep, as LIV Golf announced 42 players will compete in its inaugural event beginning June 9 in London. With the fledgling league beginning in earnest, it’s time to catch up on what has transpired thus far, what we know and what we don’t, and the ramifications of a possible fissure in professional golf.

When did this begin?

The idea of a breakaway circuit from the PGA Tour is far from a novel idea; the PGA Tour itself came to pass after players split from the PGA of America in 1967 to form the Tournament Players Division. More recently, former World No. 1 Greg Norman and media tycoon Rupert Murdoch attempted to create a “World Golf Tour” in the mid-1990s featuring the top players competing in an eight-event series. A television contract with Murdoch’s Fox Sports was even secured. But the endeavor was squashed as then-PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem flexed both the tour’s legal chops and standing in the game. Other iterations of a world tour have come and gone without much fanfare.

However, the current framework began to arise in earnest in the fall of 2019, to the point that current PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan issued a warning in January 2020 that any player who sided with a rival league would face suspension and possibly a lifetime ban. In spite of Monahan's threat, multiple players are reportedly weighing offers to join a fledgling league.

Who is challenging the PGA Tour?

Technically, there are two entities trying to rival the tour: the Premier Golf League and a Saudi-backed golf tour. The PGL was the first of the groups to coalesce in 2020, backed at the time by the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia. However, the PIF—the sovereign wealth fund of Saudi Arabia, which, according to the Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute, has $580 billion in assets—eventually backed another entity in the newly formed LIV Golf Investments. LIV Golf aspired to have its own global professional tour, often referred to as the “Super Golf League.” The PGL attempted to achieve a partnership with the European Tour but failed, with the Euro Tour eventually agreeing to a “strategic alliance” with the PGA Tour. Though the PGL concept still exists, and officials behind the venture reportedly have reached out to the PGA Tour about forming a partnership, its prospects have faded with the emergence of LIV Golf.

Why is the LIV Golf league controversial?

The PIF is essentially the financial arm of the Saudi Arabia government, which has been accused of numerous human-rights violations. To improve its reputation, especially to the Western world, Saudi Arabia has heavily invested in various athletic organizations and events, a practice often referred to as “sportswashing.” This exercise, particularly when used by state-run groups, is considered a form of propaganda to distract the public from its abuses. The most famous example of sportswashing is when Nazi Germany hosted the 1936 Summer Olympics.

Saudi Arabia has recently hosted motorsports, soccer, boxing, tennis and wrestling spectacles. In October 2021, the PIF purchased an 80-percent stake in Newcastle United, a Premier League soccer club. Since 2019, the country has hosted the Saudi International, an event formerly sanctioned by the European Tour that has drawn some of the top names in golf, who are paid considerable appearance fees.

What do we know about LIV Golf?

Founded in 2021, LIV Golf named the aforementioned Norman as its CEO in October, followed by a number of former executives from the PGA Tour and other sports affiliations. In February 2022, LIV Golf announced a $300 million, 10-year investment in the Asian Tour at the Saudi International (which now falls under the Asian Tour umbrella and is sponsored by PIF) that included a 10-event international series that will host tournaments in Asia, the Middle East and Europe.

(Video) The NEW Saudi Golf Tour And Leauge Details REVEALED..

The Saudi golf tour: What we know, what we don’t and everything else you might not understand about the proposed new league (1)

Luke Walker/WME IMG

On March 15, LIV Golf announced an eight-tournament, $255 million series—called the LIV Golf Invitational—that will kick off at the Centurion Club outside of London the week before the U.S. Open starting June 9. Each event will be a three-round, 54-hole competition with no cuts. There will also be shotgun starts in order to fit the events in a shorter time window, along with a team component, with 48 players divided between 12 squads. Five of the events will be held in the United States. Those sites are Pumpkin Ridge Golf Club in Portland (July 1-3), Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, N.J. (July 29-31), the International in Boston (Sept. 2-4), Rich Harvest Farms in Chicago (Sept. 16-18) and Trump Doral (Oct. 29-31). Other hosts include Stonehill Golf Club in Bangkok and Royal Greens Golf Club in Jeddah.

The first seven events will each boast $25 million purses, $20 million for individual prizes and another $5 million for the team competition. The eighth event will offer $30 million for the top three players of the season, with another $50 million for teams in total prize funds.

On Tuesday, May 31, LIV Golf announced the players who signed up for the opener in London, an event that is headlined by Dustin Johnson. The two-time major winner was previously linked to the fledgling circuit, although Johnson came out with a statement in February pledging loyalty to the PGA Tour. But Johnson's agent, David Winkle, released a statement to various outlets Tuesday saying Johnson continued to weigh the offer. "Dustin’s been contemplating this for the past two years and decided it was in his and his family’s best interest to pursue it," Winkle said. "He’s never had any issue with the PGA Tour and is grateful for all it’s given him but in the end felt this was too compelling to pass up.”

Phil Mickelson has also jumped to LIV Golf and will play in the London event, ending the 51-year-old’s three-month sabbatical from golf. The news is not necessarily surprising; Mickelson has been among the most prominent names connected to the LIV Golf operations and he noted in a February interview with Golf Digest that the PGA Tour's “obnoxious greed” had him looking elsewhere to play professionally. Moreover, Mickelson’s agent, Steve Loy, acknowledged in April that Mickelson had requested a release from the PGA Tour to play in LIV Golf's inaugural competition at the Centurion Club.

Other notable names in the field include Louis Oosthuizen, Sergio Garcia, Lee Westwood, Talor Gooch, Martin Kaymer, Kevin Na and Ian Poulter. All told, four players in the top 50 are among the participants—Johnson (13), Oosthuizen (20), Na (33) and Gooch (35)—and 16 of the top 100.

Additionally, Bryson DeChambeau and Patrick Reed will reportedly join the series when it comes to the United States. Despite DeChambeau denying rumors multiple times, his agent confirmed on June 8 that DeChambeau is leaving the tour. "Bryson has always been an innovator,” agent Brett Falkoff wrote to multiple outlets. “Having the opportunity to get in on the ground floor of something unique has always been intriguing to him. Professional golf as we know it is changing and it’s happening quickly.”

It’s very possible that a number of players will jump to LIV Golf later this summer or next season. Some could be waiting until after the U.S. Open to defect, while others are watching for the tour’s response before making their decision. Among those players linked to LIV Golf that are not in the London event include Jason Kokrak (who is sponsored by Saudi Golf) and Adam Scott (who has expressed interest in the limited schedule). Rickie Fowler has also telegraphed interest in the LIV Golf concept.

(Video) Phil Mickelson: what they don't tell you about LIV Golf, PGA Tour major announcement - LIVE, Golf

As of writing, here are those scheduled to appear at the London opener: Oliver Bekker, Richard Bland, Laurie Canter, TK Chantananuwat, Hennie Du Plessis, Oliver Fisher, Sergio Garcia, Talor Gooch, Branden Grace, Justin Harding, Sam Horsfield, Dustin Johnson, Matt Jones, Sadom Kaewkanjana, Martin Kaymer, Phachara Khongwatmai, Sihwan Kim, Ryosuke Kinoshita, Chase Koepka, Jinichiro Kozuma, Pablo Larrazabal, Graeme McDowell, Jediah Morgan, Kevin Na, Shaun Norris, Andy Ogletree, Louis Oosthuizen, Wade Ormsby, Adrian Otaegui, Turk Pettit, James Piot, Ian Poulter, David Puig, JC Ritchie, Charles Schwartzel, Hudson Swafford, Hideto Tanihara, Peter Uihlein, Scott Vincent, Lee Westwood, Bernd Wiesberger, Blake Windred.

The Saudi golf tour: What we know, what we don’t and everything else you might not understand about the proposed new league (2)

Jared C. Tilton

What don’t we know about LIV Golf?

No broadcast partner has been announced, although more than a few eyebrows were raised when former FOX Sports President David Hill was signed by LIV Golf; mentioned above, Murdoch’s FOX Sports was originally aligned with Norman’s WGT in the mid-1990s. It appears the first event will be made available on YouTube and Facebook.

Also unclear is the role of sponsors, be it with the league or players. For example the Royal Bank of Canada stripped its logo from its staff members who played in the Saudi International, and RBC appeared to cut ties with Johnson following Tuesday’s announcement.

What players have said they don't want to be involved with LIV Golf?

Rory McIlroy has been LIV Golf’s most outspoken critic, stating he’s not comfortable with where the money is coming from. McIlroy reiterated his stance at the 2022 Genesis Invitational to Golf Digest. “Look, I’ve lived it—for the top guys, all that money really isn’t going to change their life,” McIlroy told Golf Digest’s Dan Rapaport. “I’m in a way better financial position than I was a decade ago and my life is no different. I still use the same three, four rooms in my house. I just don’t see the value in tarnishing a reputation for extra millions.”

World No. 1 Scottie Scheffler, Jon Rahm, Collin Morikawa, Justin Thomas, Jordan Spieth and Brooks Koepka have also said they will not defect to the SGL. Following Mickelson’s comments, Xander Schauffele committed to the tour as well. Perhaps most importantly, Tiger Woods pledged his loyalty to the PGA Tour at the end of 2021.

“I’ve decided for myself that I’m supporting the PGA Tour. That’s where my legacy is,” Woods said in November 2021. “I’ve been fortunate enough to have won 82 events on this tour and 15 major championships, and been a part of the World Golf Championships, the start of them and the end of them. So I have allegiance to the PGA Tour.”

(Video) Greg Norman's Networth Has Been LEAKED.. Here's How Much He's Made So Far

What has been the response from the PGA Tour?

Some observers believe the tour’s recent purse and FedEx Cup prize money increases are a direct response to the SGL threat; however, when the tour’s new media rights deal was announced in the beginning of 2020 (a nine-year agreement believed to be valued at $7 billion), Monahan promised the money would “put us in a position to significantly increase player earnings.” In that same breath, the tour enacted a Player Impact Program in 2021, an initiative aimed at compensating the game’s most popular names separate from how they perform on the course. Last year, $40 million was allocated for the top 10 players on the tour’s PIP standings, with $50 million assigned for 2022. The tour will also award a $50,000 bonus for any player who reaches 15 starts during the 2021-22 season.

As for the idea that players may be excommunicated from the tour if they join the SGL, Monahan remains steadfast in his declaration from January 2020: them or us. Per Monahan’s ultimatum from 2020: “If the Team Golf Concept [one of the other names used by the PGL] or another iteration of this structure becomes a reality in 2022 or at any time before or after, our members will have to decide whether they want to continue to be a member of the PGA Tour or play on a new series.” At a players meeting at the 2021 Wells Fargo Championship, Monahan repeated his position: Any player joining the Saudi-backed golf league will face immediate suspension and possible expulsion from the PGA Tour. Though questions have arisen if the tour can lawfully ban a player for life, legal experts confirmed to Golf Digest that the PGA Tour would likely win any battle challenging its authority to do so.

At the Players Championship, the tour’s flagship event, Monahan said “We’re moving on,” adding “All this talk about the league and about money has been distracting to our players, our partners and most importantly our fans. We’re focused on legacy, not leverage.”

What has been the response from golf’s other organizations?

With its strategic alliance, the European Tour—rebranded in 2022 as the DP World Tour—is in lockstep with the PGA Tour. Perhaps the biggest unknown is how Augusta National, the PGA of America, the USGA and the R&A will respond to players siding with LIV Golf; specifically, if LIV Golf players will still be allowed to compete in the Masters, PGA Championship, U.S. Open and the Open Championship. Augusta National, the USGA and R&A issued statements supporting the PGA Tour and European Tour in May 2021, yet most of the statements didn't address the playing status of those who defect. The PGA of America was direct in its answer, with CEO Seth Waugh stating at the 2021 PGA Championship that those players who joined the rival league would not be allowed in future PGA Championships or Ryder Cups.

“If someone wants to play on a Ryder Cup for the U.S., they're going to need to be a member of the PGA of America, and they get that membership through being a member of the [PGA] Tour,” Waugh said. “I believe the Europeans feel the same way, and so I don't know that we can be more clear than that. It's a little murkier in our championship, but to play, from a U.S. perspective, you also have to be a member of the tour and the PGA of America to play in our championship, and we don't see that changing.”

Waugh reiterated his stance at the 2022 PGA, calling the LIV Golf concept “flawed” and “not good for the game.”

However, the 2022 U.S. Open will allow LIV Golf players to compete. “Regarding players who may choose to play in London this week, we simply asked ourselves this question—should a player who had earned his way into the 2022 U.S. Open, via our published field criteria, be pulled out of the field as a result of his decision to play in another event? And we ultimately decided that they should not," read a statement. “Our decision regarding our field for the 2022 U.S. Open should not be construed as the USGA supporting an alternative organizing entity, nor supportive of any individual player actions or comments. Rather, it is simply a response to whether or not the USGA views playing in an alternative event, without the consent of their home tour, an offense that should disqualify them for the U.S. Open.”

The Saudi golf tour: What we know, what we don’t and everything else you might not understand about the proposed new league (3)

Cliff Hawkins

(Video) I had a TWELVE HOUR TWITTER BEEF with a famous golf sportswriter over LIV GOLF and the PGA TOUR.

Where might this head?

Most likely, a courtroom. The tour is adamant they have the legal authority to issue disciplinary measures, and Norman has openly expressed his desires for players to challenge that authority. Normall additionally telegraphed his litigation threats in an open letter to the tour.

"Surely you jest," Norman wrote in a February letter. "And surely, your lawyers at the PGA Tour must be holding their breath...for decades, I have fought for the rights of players to enjoy a career in which they are rewarded fully and properly for their efforts. They are one-in-a-million athetes. Yet for decades, the Tour has put its own financial ambitions ahead of the players, and every player on the tour knows it. The Tour is the Players Tour not your administration's Tour. Why do you call the crown jewel in all tournaments outside the Majors "The Players Championship" and not "The Administration's Championship?

"But when you try to bluff and intimidate players by bullying and threatening them, you are guilty of going too far, being unfair, and you likely are in violation of the law."

Antitrust issues are not new to the tour. In fact, the FTC concluded after a four-year investigation in the early 1990s that the tour had violated antitrust laws—partially due to the aforementioned rule stipulating permission for a conflicting-event release—and recommended federal action. But no action was ultimately taken, a circumstance credited to the work of then-tour Commissioner Tim Finchem (a lawyer himself who worked in President Jimmy Carter’s administration) and the tour’s lobbying mastery. Coincidentally, this clashed with Norman’s first try to challenge the PGA Tour through his attempt to launch the World Tour.

There was a 2015 class-action lawsuit brought by caddies against the tour using antitrust and intellectual property claims, an effort that proved unsuccessful. The tour has also successfully defended itself against antitrust claims from Morris Communications Corporation regarding the tour’s limitations on real-time scoring, and it prevailed in former tour player Harry Toscano’s Clayton Act antitrust lawsuit against the Senior PGA Tour. History is on its side.

Why does all this matter?

Ethics and morals aside, a divided world at the sport’s top levels could have massive ramifications in the game. Should the list of LIV Golf defectors not grow from the initial London field list, the PGA Tour would be fine; only Johnson qualifies as a player with notable accomplishments that remains in his relative prime. Essentially, LIV Golf would be a Senior Tour light with a handful of amateur and young-ish players.

However, should a high number of 35-and-younger players with playing pedigrees and popularity side with the Saudi-backed league in the following months and years, professional golf could transform into professional boxing, a sport whose competition has been watered down by rivaling governing bodies with conflicting financial interests. The sport’s relevance, and to an extent existence, would be at stake.

FAQs

What did Tiger say about the Saudi golf league? ›

Tiger Woods does not approve of Saudi-backed golf league, and turned down $700–$800 million to prove it. The controversial multimillion-dollar LIV Golf Series backed by the Saudi government suffered another serious blow, as it looks like no amount of money will be able to sway the sport's most high-profile figure.

What is the controversy with LIV Golf league? ›

“It has threatened sponsors, vendors and agents to coerce players to abandon opportunities to play in LIV Golf events. And it has orchestrated a per se unlawful group boycott with the European Tour to deny LIV Golf access to their members,” the lawsuit said, according to ESPN.

How much does Saudi pay Dustin Johnson? ›

Several big-name golfers, including Phil Mickelson, Dustin Johnson and other major tournament winners, have taken the money and joined the LIV Tour. Reportedly, Mickelson and Johnson received more than $100 million each to join.

Who won Saudi golf 2022? ›

Charl Schwartzel wins record $4.75 million in Saudi Arabia's LIV Golf series | PBS NewsHour.

What did Phil Mickelson say about Saudi gold? ›

Speaking to the author Shipnuck in a phone interview, Mickelson said that the Saudis were 'scary mother****ers to get involved with'. The comments were then posted to the website Firepit Collective. Mickleson added: “They execute people over there for being gay. Knowing all of this, why would I even consider it?

How much did Tiger Woods offer to play in Saudi? ›

Tiger Woods turned down an offer worth approximately $700-$800 million to join the Saudi-backed LIV Golf series, according to the tour's CEO Greg Norman. During an interview on Fox News that aired on Monday, former world No.

Which PGA golfer has been accused of cheating? ›

Patrick Reed has won nine times on the PGA Tour including the 2018 Masters, but allegations of cheating have followed him nearly every step of the way.

Why are golfers leaving the PGA for LIV? ›

Scores of corporate sponsors have dropped golfers who left the PGA Tour and joined LIV Golf.

Does the PGA ban tattoos? ›

In fact, according to the PGA Tour Rules, there is no ban on tattoos or body modifications for professional golf players, but there is however a Dress Code. The Dress Code holds the list of clothes professional golfers are allowed and prohibited from wearing.

Is Phil Mickelson going to Saudi golf league? ›

Mickelson will be joining Dustin Johnson, Sergio Garcia and three other former major champions in a 54-hole tournament at Centurion Golf Club with $25 million in prize money and $4 million going to the individual winner.

How much does the the average player in the Saudi 1st Division make? ›

The average pay for a Football Player is SAR 91,880 a year and SAR 44 an hour in Saudi Arabia. The average salary range for a Football Player is between SAR 66,613 and SAR 110,073. On average, a High School Degree is the highest level of education for a Football Player.

How much money did Phil Mickelson get from LIV? ›

But what does he care? LIV more than made up for it, guaranteeing Mickelson an estimated $200 million, half of which he likely got upfront. In all, the 52-year-old pulled in $138 million in the past year, making him the world's highest-paid athlete in 2022, edging out soccer superstar Lionel Messi ($130 million).

Has Tiger Woods played in Saudi Arabia? ›

Tiger Woods reportedly turned down a multimillion-dollar offer to play in the Saudi International tournament in January. Per ESPN's Bob Harig, Saudi Arabian officials have offered Woods around $3 million in each of the past two years to take part in the event, but he has declined the invitation both times.

What is the payout for the Saudi golf tournament? ›

How much money does the winner get? The winner of each LIV Golf tournament is expected to take home $4 million — 16% of the total purse. Second place will pay out $2.125 million, while the third-place golfer will bring in $1.5 million.

Who funds the Saudi golf league? ›

The upstart tour is backed by the $620 billion (assets) Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia. It plans to spend at least $2.4 billion on the league over the next four seasons, an unheard-of sum in the world of professional golf.

Why is Phil Mickelson wearing sunglasses all of a sudden? ›

“Your skin blotches up, and you kill these cancer cells that you can't see. And when I went outside, I had to wear some protection, so I wore these glasses to kind of protect the area around my eyes.” Phil eventually realized that he liked wearing the shades.

What did Mickelson say about the tour? ›

“The Tour likes to pretend it's a democracy, but it's really a dictatorship,” Mickelson told Shipnuck. “They divide and conquer. The concerns of the top players are very different from the guys who are lower down on the money list, but there's a lot more of them.

How many balls does Tiger Woods hit per day? ›

Tiger Woods might hit up to 1000 balls per day. The average seems to be at least 500 though. The driving range is only a small portion of practice for professionals. They normally start by doing cardio or weight training and then they'll move to the range.

How much money did Tiger Woods turn down from live golf? ›

Tiger Woods turned down between $700 million and $800 million to join LIV Golf, the tour's CEO Greg Norman said Monday night, an offer that towers above the massive reported contracts of other stars who joined the controversial Saudi-funded circuit. Tiger Woods plays at the British Open last month.

How much did Rolex pay Tiger Woods? ›

Rolex signed Woods on a five-year contract which was valued at US$7 million, to be paid in endorsement fees and royalties. The partnership was focused towards younger consumers.

Who is the biggest jerk on PGA Tour? ›

1. Tiger Woods. What His Fans Say: "Tiger Woods!" is what his fans yell, to be precise.

Can PGA players smoke on the course? ›

Currently, the PGA does not have any specific rules that prohibit players from smoking on tour. However, it does seem as though certain venues ban smoking on their premises. In other words, PGA Players are allowed to smoke as long as the club/course does not have any policies that prohibit it.

Why do golfers remove their glove to putt? ›

Tour pros imagine that the glove acts as a barrier between the millions of nerve endings in their fingers and hands and the putter, and thus reduces their feel and their ability to drain tricky putts.

Do pro golfers get paid if they miss the cut? ›

Some major tournaments, like the Masters, will pay an appearance fee to golfers that miss the cut. Historically this has been around $10,000 USD.

Why did Tiger Woods get rid of Steve Williams? ›

Notably, he once threw a spectator's camera into the pond for taking pictures of Woods during a backswing. Despite their seemingly fruitful relationship, Woods fired Williams in 2011 after their relationship soured following Woods' cheating scandal came to light.

Do PGA players stay in hotels? ›

A typical professional golfer is always on the move, traveling from tournament to tournament. The more well-known golfers travel by plane and stay in luxury hotels or rented homes, while the typical player on a minor tour drives to the next tournament and stays in a motel.

Can you drink beer on the PGA Tour? ›

The sale of all alcoholic beverages, including beer, to the general public will end at the end of play each day. Volunteers are prohibited from drinking alcoholic beverages when on duty and are discouraged from drinking in public areas while in uniform.

Why do PGA players not use carts? ›

Yet on the PGA Tour, professional golfers walk the entire course with their caddy lugging the clubs without so much as a hand cart. This is because all the major tours, the PGA Tour included, believe that walking is an integral part of the game and requires all golfers to walk the course.

Can PGA players wear hoodies? ›

Besides, the game has enough barriers as is; clothing shouldn't be an obstacle. So, are you allowed to rock a hoodie at the course? You're damn right you can.

Why is Mickelson playing in Saudi? ›

Mickelson's connection with the Saudis was at the root of his stepping away from the public eye. In comments reported in February, he admitted to full knowledge of Saudi's infamous human rights record, which he was prepared to overlook when looking to leverage the PGA Tour.

Who is the best player in the Saudi league? ›

Saudi Arabian Football Players in FIFA 23
#PlayerSTATS
1.S. Al Dawsari Al Hilal | LM1,964
2.Y. Al Shahrani Al Hilal | LB1,964
3.Salman Al Faraj Al Hilal | CM1,990
4.A. Al Amri Al Nassr | CB1,590
72 more rows

How much do basketballers earn? ›

How Much Do NBA Players Make A Year? The NBA players get paid an average salary of around $7.5 million. The median salary, as known as middle salary, is about $3.8 million. The Basketball Reference says the salary cap for the 2020-2022 season is $109.1 million.

How much do League 2 players earn? ›

The introduction of a salary cap for League One and League Two has forced League Two clubs to spend no more than £1 million per year on player wages – this averages out to roughly £1,000 per week for each player in League Two.

How much does Jordan Spieth's caddie make per year? ›

Jordan Spieth's caddie and former sixth-grade teacher, Michael Greller, has likely made $2 million this season.

How much does Mickelson pay his caddy? ›

During his time as Mickelson's caddie, Mackay earned roughly between $500,000 – $1 million per year and is often referred to by his nickname 'Bones' due to his lanky frame. 'Bones' has since teamed up with Justin Thomas and they have had big success together, winning the 2022 PGA Championship.

How much does Tiger Woods caddy get paid? ›

According to Golf Week, a caddie earns five to 10 percent of a professional golfer's winnings on top of his base salary. A caddie makes between $1,500 and $2,500 in base pay per week during golf tournaments, Forbes reports.

What religion does Tiger Woods believe in? ›

But Woods said his Buddhist faith would be a key part of his quest to put his life back together after revelations of his marital infidelity, which he admitted for the first time.

What did Tiger say about the Saudi golf League? ›

Tiger Woods does not approve of Saudi-backed golf league, and turned down $700–$800 million to prove it. The controversial multimillion-dollar LIV Golf Series backed by the Saudi government suffered another serious blow, as it looks like no amount of money will be able to sway the sport's most high-profile figure.

Does Tiger Woods get an appearance fee? ›

Woods' appearance fee is $3 million and there are tournaments in Asia and Australia willing to shell out that kind of money for Woods' presence, and for good reason.

Where is the Saudi golf money coming from? ›

Key Facts. $25 million: That's the purse for each LIV Golf regular season event, thanks to financing from the Saudi Arabian sovereign wealth fund, surpassing every tournament on the PGA Tour, including the leading $20 million purse at the Players Championship in March.

How much did Harold Varner make in Saudi Arabia? ›

While many players controversially received lucrative appearance fees to compete in the Asian Tour event, the actually prize money payout for the tournament was $5 million, with Varner earning a first-place prize of $1 million.

How much was Greg Norman paid for LIV Golf? ›

Norman didn't confirm the exact number, but he indicated that the payment was in the $700 to $800 million range.
...
Tiger Woods LIV Golf offer: Greg Norman reveals monumental proposal PGA Tour rival made to Woods.
RankGolferEarnings
Total$698,398,370
10 more rows
2 Aug 2022

What golfers are joining the Saudi golf league? ›

Mickelson will be joining Dustin Johnson, Sergio Garcia and three other former major champions in a 54-hole tournament at Centurion Golf Club with $25 million in prize money and $4 million going to the individual winner.

Does the PGA do business with Saudi Arabia? ›

Yet, if you look at the U.S. tour's title sponsors, a majority have business relations with Saudi Arabia, and/or footprints inside the Kingdom. In fact, the PGA Tour's big-money postseason – the three-tournament series – is entirely title-sponsored by brands with a presence in the Kingdom.

How much was Dustin Johnson paid to play in Saudi Arabia? ›

Several big-name golfers, including Phil Mickelson, Dustin Johnson and other major tournament winners, have taken the money and joined the LIV Tour. Reportedly, Mickelson and Johnson received more than $100 million each to join.

What did Tiger Woods say about the new golf league? ›

"TGL is the next evolution within professional golf, and I am committed to helping lead it into the future," Woods said in a statement. "Embracing technology to create this unique environment gives us the ability to move our sport into primetime on a consistent basis alongside so many of sports' biggest events."

What Tiger thinks about Liv tour? ›

He said he disagreed with players getting enormous signing bonuses to defect to LIV Golf, saying they have turned their backs on the tour that made them famous.

Was alcohol involved in Tiger's accident? ›

Tiger Woods Won't Face Charges, Wasn't Under Influence of Alcohol During Crash. Tiger Woods isn't facing any charges at this time stemming from Tuesday's single-car crash in California. "He was not drunk. We can throw that one out," Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said Wednesday.

Who funds the Saudi golf league? ›

The upstart tour is backed by the $620 billion (assets) Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia. It plans to spend at least $2.4 billion on the league over the next four seasons, an unheard-of sum in the world of professional golf.

Why did Tiger Woods keep changing his swing? ›

One argument in favor of Woods' swing-change decisions through the years has been that he underwent these changes in order to better preserve his body for the future.

Why did Tiger fire his caddy Steve Williams? ›

According to reports, things started turning sour between the two at this time. The final blow apparently arrived when Williams agreed to caddie for Adam Scott in that year's U.S. Open. Both parties kept quiet about their souring relationship, but this event is well-known.

Why did Tiger stop using Steve Williams? ›

The 50-year-old Williams told Fairfax Media on Thursday he wants to reduce his caddying to spend more time with family in New Zealand. He said he is “90 per cent certain it's going to be a permanent break from caddying” but he will consider working part-time in 2015.

Are Tiger and Steve still friends? ›

“I think he got as much out of it as I did,” he said. “I think enough time has passed now that he's just absolutely enamored with Tiger, he still loves him like a friend and just absolutely respects his work ethic and what he's achieved in the game of golf.

What disease does Tiger Woods have? ›

Anish Mahajan, the chief medical officer and interim CEO of Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, said Woods suffered comminuted open fractures -- bones that were broken into more than two pieces and with breaks in the skin -- in the upper and lower portions of the tibia and fibula of his right leg.

How much did Tiger Woods turn down from LIV? ›

The project makers suffered another major blow when Tiger Woods turned down LIV's offer to feature in the event. Woods reportedly said no to an offer worth $1 billion, stating that even a hefty paycheck would not sway him to play in the LIV series.

What caused Tiger's car crash? ›

Six weeks after Tiger Woods crashed his sports utility vehicle in Southern California, police revealed the cause of the accident: excessive speed.

What caused Tiger's crash? ›

The 22-page report was obtained by USA TODAY Sports after the sheriff's department announced Wednesday that the cause of the Woods crash was “driving at a speed unsafe for the road conditions and the inability to negotiate the curve of the roadway."

What was the real reason for Tiger Woods accident? ›

Excessive Speed

“The cause of the collision was the speed and inability to maintain the roadway,” Powers said. Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva added that Woods will not face citations or charges for speeding in the 45-mph zone.

Has Tiger Woods played in Saudi Arabia? ›

Tiger Woods reportedly turned down a multimillion-dollar offer to play in the Saudi International tournament in January. Per ESPN's Bob Harig, Saudi Arabian officials have offered Woods around $3 million in each of the past two years to take part in the event, but he has declined the invitation both times.

Does the PGA take money from Saudi Arabia? ›

Key Facts. $25 million: That's the purse for each LIV Golf regular season event, thanks to financing from the Saudi Arabian sovereign wealth fund, surpassing every tournament on the PGA Tour, including the leading $20 million purse at the Players Championship in March.

What golfers are joining the Saudi golf league? ›

Mickelson will be joining Dustin Johnson, Sergio Garcia and three other former major champions in a 54-hole tournament at Centurion Golf Club with $25 million in prize money and $4 million going to the individual winner.

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