PGA Tour to add multiple M tournaments in 2023 as attempt to combat LIV Golf, reports say

PGA Tour to add multiple $20M tournaments in 2023 as attempt to combat LIV Golf, reports say

The PGA Tour has responded, several times and in various ways, to the new LIV Golf league. His latest counterattack to LIV taking down a handful of stars and multi-major winners is an informed plan to add a big-money fall schedule to the annual schedule with individual purses of approximately $20 million up for grabs among the top 50 players in the previous season.

According to Golfweek, the PGA Tour will likely overlay currently scheduled events with three $60 million-paying tournaments during the fall. They will feature the 50 golfers who qualify for the BMW Championship, the second of three FedEx Cup qualifying events, and will be spread across Asia, Europe and the Middle East.

Another proposed change is that only 70 golfers (up from 125) would qualify for the first FedEx Cup qualifying event, the St. Jude Championship. Only those 70 would be guaranteed PGA Tour cards for the following season, which will be held again for a calendar year beginning in January 2024.

In addition, the purses for eight different events have already increased, many of them almost doubling, and the largest individual purse in golf now belongs to The Players Championship, which went from $20 million to $25 million.

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The addition of three events would create tournaments that are effectively the same as the World Golf Championship events, which were created two decades ago. It would be harder to get in because they are limited to the top 50 players from the previous season, but the effect is the same. It’s a direct monetary rebuttal to LIV Golf, which is planning double-digit $25 million tournaments next year ($20 million for individuals, $5 million for teams).

What is fascinating is how much money is being spent here. The only event on the PGA Tour currently equivalent to this purse size is the $20 million Players Championship. The current largest purse of major championships is the US Open, which just increased its number to $17.5 million at Brookline.

The other interesting part of this development is what the response of the players will be. Part of the appeal of LIV Golf is that golfers can play fewer events for more guaranteed money in the form of contracts. It doesn’t matter where Dustin Johnson and Bryson DeChambeau finish in LIV Golf events because they get paid either way. This PGA Tour move could see stars play more tournaments than they already do without any money guaranteed by contract.

Golfers clearly want guaranteed money, as Patrick Cantlay stated Tuesday at the Travelers Championship.

“I definitely think that could be beneficial,” Cantlay said. “I think right now there’s a competition for talent that’s going on and I think you see it in all kinds of other businesses. You’ve seen it in other professional sports from time to time. Part of the concern is not knowing what the future is going to be. “. it will be. It’s an uncertain time for golf right now, but if you think about it in the larger business landscape, it’s a competition for talent. So if the PGA Tour wants to remain the preeminent circuit for professional golfers, it has to be the best place to play for the best players in the world.”

However, these additional events might not even be something the top players were asking for.

“I think there are enough programs out there that benefit top players right now, the PIP program, Comcast Top-10, the FedExCup bonus, all of those things are designed to funnel more money into the pockets of top players,” said Rory McIlroy. . at the Wells Fargo Championship last month. “You play the best, and the cream should rise to the top by the end of the year. That’s why the Comcast Top-10, the FedExCup bonus money is so high. And then you add the PIP in there for the people who make the most impact on the Tour”.

Now, the best players might have to add to their schedules to accumulate wealth in the regular season. Part of the reason for this is that the PGA Tour is a 501c(6) organization, which means it is tax-exempt and therefore must be creative with how it pays its members (i.e. create more events for players to play instead of guaranteeing contracts). .

This new three-tournament league within a league introduction is part of that, and should at least help take care of top players financially (especially if they also bump up five current purses to $20 million), which the PGA Tour believes likely to stifle the outflow of players to LIV Golf.

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