LIV Golf League To Expand, Offer Massive $405 Million In Purses
By Jason Hall
July 27, 2022
The LIV Golf League announced its plans for expanding to a 14-tournament schedule, 48-player, 12-franchise roster and offer a massive $405 million in purses during its 2023 schedule on Wednesday (July 27), ESPN reports.
LIV Golf, which launched earlier this year amid its controversial ties to the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia, began with an eight-tournament schedule in 2022 offering $255 million in total purses.
The league didn't announce the dates or locations for the upcoming 2023 events, but noted that it expects "to expand LIV Golf's global footprint across North and Latin Americas, Asia, Australia, the Middle East and Europe."
LIV Gold also said next year's scheduled events wouldn't conflict with the PGA's four scheduled majors, international team events or heritage tournaments in 2023, "so the best players in the game will always be able to make their own choices about where to play."
Several of golf's biggest names, including Dustin Johnson, Phil Mickelson, Bryson DeChambeau and Brooks Koepka, have all signed multiyear deals with LIV Golf, which offers guaranteed contracts ranging between $100 million and $200 million.
"LIV Golf's expanding global platform will add a new dimension to the golf ecosystem as we know it, one that provides an opportunity for players and fans around the world to help maximize our beloved sport's true potential," CEO and commissioner Greg Norman said in a statement. "Our franchise model will bring new energy and excitement to fans from all corners of the world, establishing a league of teams to connect and grow with."
In June, the PGA Tour suspended all 17 members who competed in the inaugural LIV Golf event, according to a copy of a memo announcing the punishment to players shared by Front Office Sports ahead of the event on June 9.
The announced disciplinary action came just as the 17 PGA members and former members hit their opening tee shots in the inaugural event, which was held at Centurion Club outside of London.
The players suspended include all of the following, with an asterisk listed next to players who informed the PGA Tour that they resigned their membership prior to the decision:
- Sergio Garcia*
- Talor Gooch
- Branden Grace*
- Dustin Johnson*
- Matt Jones
- Martin Kaymer*
- Graeme McDowell*
- Phil Mickelson
- Kevin Na*
- Andy Ogletree
- Louis Oosthuizen*
- Turk Pettit*
- Ian Poulter
- Charl Schwartzel*
- Hudson Swafford
- Peter Uihlein
- Lee Westwood*
"These players have made their choice for their own financial-based reasons," PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan wrote in the memo. "But they can't demand the same PGA TOUR membership benefits, considerations, opportunities and platform as you. That expectation disrespects you, our fans and our partners. You have made a different choice, which is to abide by the Tournament Regulations you agreed to when you accomplished the dream of earning a PGA TOUR card and -- more importantly -- to compete as part of the preeminent organization in the world of professional golf."
BREAKING: The PGA Tour has suspended any current or future participants in LIV Golf. pic.twitter.com/LadjBmyEr5— Front Office Sports (@FOS) June 9, 2022
The memo added that players who compete in LIV events have been ruled as ineligible of competing on the PGA Tour or the Korn Ferry Tour, PGA Tour Champions, PGA Tour Canada and PGA Tour Latinoamerica, all of which are sanctioned by the organization.
"I am certain our fans and partners -- who are surely tired of all this talk of money, money and more money -- will continue to be entertained and compelled by the world-class competition you display each and every week, where there are true consequences for every shot you take and your rightful place in history whenever you reach that elusive winner's circle," Monahan wrote. "You are the PGA TOUR, and this moment is about what we stand for: the PGA TOUR membership as a whole. It's about lifting up those who choose to not only benefit from the TOUR, but who also play an integral role in building it.
"I know you are with us, and vice versa. Our partners are with us, too. The fact that your former TOUR colleagues can't say the same should be telling.
LIV Golf is supported by the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia controlled by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who is accused of violating numerous human rights violations, which included being linked to the assassination of Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi, a critic of his regime, in 2018.
The LIV Golf regular-season winner will get $4 million, while the last-place finisher is due $120,000, ESPN reports.