What’s been called a “mandatory” meeting with players has been called for Tuesday night, where commissioner Jay Monahan is expected to lay out a series of proposals designed to head off a challenge from LIV Golf.
According to Golfweek, that includes a closer relationship with the DP World Tour (formerly the European Tour), as well as three big-money, limited field events that effectively copy the LIV model.
Those three events are expected to be held in Europe, the Middle East and Asia, meaning Australia will miss out again, despite recent calls from world No.7 Cameron Smith for the country to be considered for a tournament. Golfweek reports those three events will offer prizemoney “to rival the LIV Golf riches” suggesting a total of $105 million could be up for grabs.
LIV Golf will stage its second tournament later this month in Portland, Oregan. That event is expected to feature recent signings Bryson DeChambeau and Patrick Reed, while world No.20 Abraham Ancer is rumoured to be the latest big name on the verge of defecting.
Norman has flagged that LIV will apply for its tournaments to be given world rankings points, a move that would signal a seismic re-shaping of the golf landscape.
Currently, players can’t earn rankings points in LIV events, impacting their ability to qualify for the four major tournaments each year. Any change on that front would represent a major threat to the existing tours, with more players likely to jump ship.
Interestingly, Monahan is one of the eight members of the Official World Golf Rankings (OWGR) board of governors.
Norman suggested on Sunday that the commissioner should recuse himself from any vote to grant LIV tournaments OWGR points. If points were to be granted to LIV events, its unclear what weighting would be given to the fact that LIV tournaments are limited field, 54-hole events, as opposed to the regular 72-hole tournaments.
On of the sport’s leading analysts, PGA Tour winner Brandel Chamblee, has again hit out at Norman over his role as the LIV Golf figurehead. The Australian questioned why his tour was under the microscope for the fact it was bankrolled by Saudi Arabia, while pointing out the PGA Tour has 23 sponsors that does business in that country.
According to Chamblee, that’s an argument that doesn’t stand up to scrutiny.
“Norman is a man with no moral compass IMO, and not clever enough to know the difference between doing business in a country and doing business for a murderer,” he wrote on Twitter.
“He’s a paid propagandist. Ask yourself this, why do his questions make a murderer happy? Because he’s paid to sell lies.
“The players who’ve gone to LIV & will go to LIV are selling their souls.
“They are happy to take money from a murderer to help hide his atrocities as long as they can profit. They’ve earned fortunes through the tour format but can’t take a younger generation kicking their butts.”
NBA legend Charles Barkley has gone into bat for those that have signed up with LIV Golf, which includes major champions such as Phil Mickelson and Dustin Johnson.
Speaking on the Pat McAfee Show, Barkley said it would be impossible to ignore the sums of money being thrown around.
“I don’t judge other people,” he said.
“Listen, if somebody gave me $200 million, I’d kill a relative. I’m serious. I’d kill a relative, even one I like.”
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