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LIV Golf (Saudi PIF), "Mergers," and More


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7 hours ago, Dr. Manhattan said:

I think we might see a tidal wave of players jump to LIV when we get to November/December. 

How many can jump if LIV maintains their 48-player format?  Or is that going to change?

And how many players are they going to pay exorbitant amounts just for showing up?

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I'm on the fence about the whole LIV thing but some of the arguments in this thread are so outlandish I was inspired to sign up and comment, although I do appreciate the good laugh I must say. Just a reminder to everyone... you do realize that the US has imported about 5 billion barrels of oil from the Saudis over the last 20 years.... i.e. about *610 BILLION* dollars going to the 'murderous dictators'? Where's that coming from.. combination of US government & US organizations and the people they sell their products to I assume.  But..... because we want to drive around in our 5 mile/gallon SUV's that's totally fine then? No blood on my hands! Remind me again who has a REAL association with the Saudi gov? Oh and speaking of which... we all heard of the Aramco golf series I'm guessing? You know that company 98%+ owned by the Saudi gov? Hmm I think the Korda sisters better start looking for a new job soon since they clearly will be called out on this board for expulsion from any women's major event, and/or banned from the LPGA entirely. Oh and anyone or any golf related person or company associated with UAE, Lebanon and Egypt, since their citizens were also 9/11 hijackers. 

Gee, with all the prize money the US PGA will be saving here perhaps the could buy tickets for the next PGA Tour China event and donate them to the Uyghur people.... they'd love to go! No blood on the PGA's hands!

 

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53 minutes ago, BruceMGF said:

How many can jump if LIV maintains their 48-player format?  Or is that going to change?

And how many players are they going to pay exorbitant amounts just for showing up?

There certainly appears to be a hard cap.  The 48 player format seems fixed for this season....maybe they expand next season, but as long as they are sticking with shotgun starts, 54 seems like the biggest they can go (groups of 3 starting on all 18 holes) unless they pivot to groups of 4 to reach a max of 72.  Whatever the size though, I cant imagine anyone turning their back on the PGA Tour without an assurance of being able to play all events.

I'm sure there will be a few more defections, but its certainly not a scenario where floodgates can just open and everyone heads over there, because most wouldn't end up being able to play.  Every single guy that heads over there right now is already kicking out someone who played in London, it wouldn't take much before relevant players are left out of LIV fields

-Eric

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2 hours ago, SkyeHacker said:

Gee, with all the prize money the US PGA will be saving here perhaps the could buy tickets for the next PGA Tour China event and donate them to the Uyghur people.... they'd love to go! No blood on the PGA's hands!

@SkyeHacker, you could come up with double standards all day long for just about anything if you want.  There are some obvious practicalities that necessitate the US do a certain amount of business with the Saudis, but I'll give you some credit on the point about China. The PGA Tour (and any other organization doing business over there) should consider that situation. The word genocide is getting used there.

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4 hours ago, Friz said:

Every single guy that heads over there right now is already kicking out someone who played in London, it wouldn't take much before relevant players are left out of LIV fields

And then what happens to players no longer of any use to LIV, and no longer welcome in the PGA (and maybe other tours, we shall see)?

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18 hours ago, iacas said:

I know a lot about the history of the game. Almost nobody played in it. It had no real prestige.

I guess we are all free to define prestige in any way we choose...so you won't agree, and that's fine. 

But it undoubtedly always was a prestigious tournament.

The British open was the first real championship.

It was identified as part of Jones's grand slam.

It was included as one of the four professional major championships when that concept became cemented in the world of golf in the 1970s.

It had weaker fields in the postwar era, until 1969, because it was the same week or within days of the US PGA championship. The PGA offered 3 times the prize money. There wasn't much money in golf in those days, and most pros either couldn't comfortably afford to go, or at least knew they were risking losing alot if they went and didn't finish high. It's not a surprise they didn't go, choosing another prestigious tournament that was easier to play in and more lucrative. But many of them still made an effort to go at least in some years; as you mention, Snead went 5 or 6 times, and as you know from your knowledge of golf history, he was a notorious cheapskate 🙂

Player went every year. He was one of the acknowledged leaders of professional golf and chose the Open over the US PGA. The fact is that just about every leading champion of American golf and golfers around the world tried to win it. It was covered in the press and is discussed historically as a "major."

Jones, Sarazen, Hagen, Hogan, Demaret, Player, Palmer, Nicklaus, etc. etc. all made the effort and went to the expense to try to win the event. They did so because they held it in high regard, they respected it.

If it wasn't prestige, why did they ever try? We know the prize money sucked. Did they go over for the food? 

The fact that US participation in it was thin is a reflection of economic realities of the time, not the prestige of the championship per se. We can acknowledge that it was easier to win the British Open from 1946-1969 than it is today, but that is not proof that the championship was not prestigious.

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11 minutes ago, Big Lex said:

Did they go over for the food? 

 

No, definitely not....

—Adam

 

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41 minutes ago, BruceMGF said:

And then what happens to players no longer of any use to LIV, and no longer welcome in the PGA (and maybe other tours, we shall see)?

I hope the guys making the decision to go know more than I do....but I'd have to assume if they're leaving for LIV they're getting some sort of assurance or guarantee that they'll be able to play for x number of years.  At some point LIV won't be able to guarantee that with their field sizes, and I'd assume we stop seeing the attrition.

-Eric

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14 minutes ago, Big Lex said:

I guess we are all free to define prestige in any way we choose...so you won't agree, and that's fine. 

But it undoubtedly always was a prestigious tournament.

The British open was the first real championship.

It was identified as part of Jones's grand slam.

It was included as one of the four professional major championships when that concept became cemented in the world of golf in the 1970s.

It had weaker fields in the postwar era, until 1969, because it was the same week or within days of the US PGA championship. The PGA offered 3 times the prize money. There wasn't much money in golf in those days, and most pros either couldn't comfortably afford to go, or at least knew they were risking losing alot if they went and didn't finish high. It's not a surprise they didn't go, choosing another prestigious tournament that was easier to play in and more lucrative. But many of them still made an effort to go at least in some years; as you mention, Snead went 5 or 6 times, and as you know from your knowledge of golf history, he was a notorious cheapskate 🙂

Player went every year. He was one of the acknowledged leaders of professional golf and chose the Open over the US PGA. The fact is that just about every leading champion of American golf and golfers around the world tried to win it. It was covered in the press and is discussed historically as a "major."

Jones, Sarazen, Hagen, Hogan, Demaret, Player, Palmer, Nicklaus, etc. etc. all made the effort and went to the expense to try to win the event. They did so because they held it in high regard, they respected it.

If it wasn't prestige, why did they ever try? We know the prize money sucked. Did they go over for the food? 

The fact that US participation in it was thin is a reflection of economic realities of the time, not the prestige of the championship per se. We can acknowledge that it was easier to win the British Open from 1946-1969 than it is today, but that is not proof that the championship was not prestigious.

 

I agree, Transatlantic flight was not as accessable then as it is now, and players were not as rich then as they are these days. 

I'm sure many more US golfers would have loved the chance to be the champion golfer of the year. 

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6 hours ago, SkyeHacker said:

I'm on the fence about the whole LIV thing but some of the arguments in this thread are so outlandish I was inspired to sign up and comment, although I do appreciate the good laugh I must say. Just a reminder to everyone... you do realize that the US has imported about 5 billion barrels of oil from the Saudis over the last 20 years.... i.e. about *610 BILLION* dollars going to the 'murderous dictators'? Where's that coming from.. combination of US government & US organizations and the people they sell their products to I assume.  But..... because we want to drive around in our 5 mile/gallon SUV's that's totally fine then? No blood on my hands! Remind me again who has a REAL association with the Saudi gov? Oh and speaking of which... we all heard of the Aramco golf series I'm guessing? You know that company 98%+ owned by the Saudi gov? Hmm I think the Korda sisters better start looking for a new job soon since they clearly will be called out on this board for expulsion from any women's major event, and/or banned from the LPGA entirely. Oh and anyone or any golf related person or company associated with UAE, Lebanon and Egypt, since their citizens were also 9/11 hijackers. 

Gee, with all the prize money the US PGA will be saving here perhaps the could buy tickets for the next PGA Tour China event and donate them to the Uyghur people.... they'd love to go! No blood on the PGA's hands!

The entire modern economy in the US is built around cars. In most American cities choosing to only transit by bike or mass transit is a huge sacrifice of time and quality of life and is incredibly inconvenient. We should all support public policy trying to change that and reject politicians standing in the way. And driving a 5mpg truck/SUV that's not required for your work is morally reprehensible. But it's a total sleight of hand to pretend that buying gasoline is the moral equivalent of supporting the Saudi regime.

These guys have big public profiles and much more power than any of us. Joining LIV is not an unfortunate consequence of the development of vast systems over which none of them had control. It's actively using their notable power and visibility to help the Saudi government market itself as non-evil.

The Korda sisters thing is disappointing, but playing in a single fun format event on the Euro Tour is also not equivalent to joining LIV.

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On 6/12/2022 at 3:01 PM, Abu3baid said:

What’s interesting is that there is currently 0 coverage of the LIV tour in KSA… like nothing, as if it doesn’t exist.  When they have the tournament here in Jeddah I’m sure it will be a side note that there is a tournament, but no, there isn’t advertising of the millions being paid out..

Now that doesn't sound like growing the game 😆

 

Since @Abu3baid came out of the woodwork for this, I might as well too. Strange days in professional golf, folks.

Constantine

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On 6/12/2022 at 3:55 PM, Shindig said:

I was wondering about local-to-KSA coverage a few days ago and thought of you.  Thanks for letting us know! 

Ha!  I did not realize Greg Norman had "only" twenty wins.  No wonder he wants to associate with a league whose events stop at 54 holes.

It would be funny to figure out how many tour events and majors he would have had if they all finished after 54 holes.

19 hours ago, iacas said:

Vote in my poll. 🙂

I can't because I don't do Twitter, but I would have voted yes.

10 hours ago, boogielicious said:

Angel Cabrera can’t play either the Masters or US Open, so I don’t think the LIV players should be able to. Association with murderous dictators should be enough.

But is it because he's been disinvited or is it because he's in jail?  I don't know the answer to that.

Edited by turtleback

But then again, what the hell do I know?

Rich - in name only

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2 hours ago, Big Lex said:

I guess we are all free to define prestige in any way we choose...so you won't agree, and that's fine. 

But it undoubtedly always was a prestigious tournament.

The British open was the first real championship.

It was identified as part of Jones's grand slam.

It was included as one of the four professional major championships when that concept became cemented in the world of golf in the 1970s.

It had weaker fields in the postwar era, until 1969, because it was the same week or within days of the US PGA championship. The PGA offered 3 times the prize money. There wasn't much money in golf in those days, and most pros either couldn't comfortably afford to go, or at least knew they were risking losing alot if they went and didn't finish high. It's not a surprise they didn't go, choosing another prestigious tournament that was easier to play in and more lucrative. But many of them still made an effort to go at least in some years; as you mention, Snead went 5 or 6 times, and as you know from your knowledge of golf history, he was a notorious cheapskate 🙂

Player went every year. He was one of the acknowledged leaders of professional golf and chose the Open over the US PGA. The fact is that just about every leading champion of American golf and golfers around the world tried to win it. It was covered in the press and is discussed historically as a "major."

Jones, Sarazen, Hagen, Hogan, Demaret, Player, Palmer, Nicklaus, etc. etc. all made the effort and went to the expense to try to win the event. They did so because they held it in high regard, they respected it. 

If it wasn't prestige, why did they ever try? We know the prize money sucked. Did they go over for the food? 

The fact that US participation in it was thin is a reflection of economic realities of the time, not the prestige of the championship per se. We can acknowledge that it was easier to win the British Open from 1946-1969 than it is today, but that is not proof that the championship was not prestigious.

Due respect, given your self admitted lack of knowledge about golf history I don't think your opinion on the prestige of the British Open over the past 100 years carries much weight. 

Your Jones point is specious because the British Amateur, which also made up his GS was never, in any time or place, considered a major. 

The first 5 of the players you listed didn't go to the BO because it was a major, or prestigious, they went because it was an historical novelty.  Hagen played it the most, of the early guys, but he went to England more for the lucrative exhibitions he could play and then since he was there anyway he'd play the BO.

You are also mistaken about latter years scheduling conflicts between the BO and PGA.  As early as 1965, a year I chose at random, there was a month between them.  Even in 1960 there were almost 3 weeks between them.  In 1959 when Player won his 1st BO there were 4 weeks between them.  No one skipped the British or the PGA for scheduling reasons.  You are taken the already discredited Hogan story and extrapolating from it.

When Player went every year in the pre-Arnie period he was a relative unknown.  It was winning the Masters in '61 and the PGA in '62 that made his name, not the '59 BO that had no significant players entered.

 

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But then again, what the hell do I know?

Rich - in name only

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27 minutes ago, turtleback said:

Due respect, given your self admitted lack of knowledge about golf history I don't think your opinion on the prestige of the British Open over the past 100 years carries much weight. 

Your Jones point is specious because the British Amateur, which also made up his GS was never, in any time or place, considered a major. 

The first 5 of the players you listed didn't go to the BO because it was a major, or prestigious, they went because it was an historical novelty.  Hagen played it the most, of the early guys, but he went to England more for the lucrative exhibitions he could play and then since he was there anyway he'd play the BO.

You are also mistaken about latter years scheduling conflicts between the BO and PGA.  As early as 1965, a year I chose at random, there was a month between them.  Even in 1960 there were almost 3 weeks between them.  In 1959 when Player won his 1st BO there were 4 weeks between them.  No one skipped the British or the PGA for scheduling reasons.  You are taken the already discredited Hogan story and extrapolating from it.

When Player went every year in the pre-Arnie period he was a relative unknown.  It was winning the Masters in '61 and the PGA in '62 that made his name, not the '59 BO that had no significant players entered.

 

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9 hours ago, BruceMGF said:

How many can jump if LIV maintains their 48-player format?  Or is that going to change?

And how many players are they going to pay exorbitant amounts just for showing up?

 

They will either increase the field to a lot more than 48 or they will dump the guys who don't move the needle. They had a whole bunch of those "non-needle" guys in the first tournament, at least 30 of them. 

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12 hours ago, boogielicious said:

Angel Cabrera can’t play either the Masters or US Open, so I don’t think the LIV players should be able to. Association with murderous dictators should be enough.

This.  Especially for guys like Phil and others who are wealthy beyond belief already and who are just being outright greedy and selling themselves to the highest bidder.

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