REPORT: PGA Tour Couldn’t Afford to Continue Legal Fight Against LIV
This past week, the world of golf was turned upside down when the PGA Tour announced that it was merging with the Saudi Public Investment Fund, and essentially LIV Golf.
According to a report from the Wall Street Journal, the merger happened, at least in part, due to the PGA Tour being financially unable to continue the legal battle with LIV Golf.
“We cannot compete with a foreign government with unlimited money. We waited to be in the strongest possible position to get this deal in place,” Monahan told employees in a meeting, according to the report.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Monahan told staff in a meeting on Thursday that legal fees were in the range of $50 million and that reserve money had been depleted by $100 million due to larger purses and bonus pools.
The Tour instituted those purses and bonus pools to keep players from jumping ship.
Sports Illustrated’s Bob Harig confirmed that the meeting happened and received a statement from the PGA Tour.
“To characterize that this agreement was made due to litigation costs and other use of reserves is an oversimplification. With the end of the fractured landscape in the world of men’s professional golf, the PGA TOUR has never been a more valuable property. The Public Investment Fund (PIF) has recognized that value and the opportunity for ROI with their investment in the TOUR. Additionally, this transaction will make professional golf more competitive with other professional sports and sports leagues.”
Details of the merger are sketchy with more expected to be announced in the coming weeks and months.
The U.S. Open is set to get underway next week at Los Angeles Country Club, and the commentary around it will be just as interesting as the tournament itself.