It seems like a very good day for the PGA Tour as they have responded quickly and significantly to LIV Golf swooping in and trying to drink their milkshake. Major changes have been announced following a players-only meeting with the Tour's biggest names, including 12 "elevated events" with intentions to expand to 16 in coming years, larger purses and the PIP bonus pool rising to $100 million, and an earnings assurance program. Rory McIlroy and Tiger Woods also announced plans for a tech-heavy golf league with primetime Monday events. None of this would have been possible without Greg Norman and his cadre of swashbucklers forcing the issue. If for some reason they thought the PGA wouldn't have a few tricks up their sleeve, well, it would simply be another miscalculations among a series of miscalculations.
And whether you wish LIV to thrive or die, there's no debating that fleeing the PGA carried significant risk. Even the brightest optimist should have some lingering concerns about the long-term viability of the league and it's been a bit shocking to me personally that so many golfers have felt secure enough in their decision to put themselves in a situation where they can never return to the biggest game in town. Such a scenario would represent the largest miscalculation of them all.
Anyone holding out hope that the door might be open for them to return if that time comes should probably reset expectations.
During his press availability this morning PGA Commissioner Jay Monahan was asked if he'd lift the suspensions on LIV players and welcome them back.
"No," he said. "They've joined the LIV Golf series. They've made that commitment. For most of them, they've made multiyear commitments. I've been clear throughout: every player has a choice and I respect their choice. But they've made it. We've made ours. We're going to continue on the things that we control and get stronger and stronger."
That doesn't sound like a person heavily burdened by such a decision.
Look, perhaps LIV turns into a smashing success and it was the best move for those who wanted to explore greener, more controversial pastures. At this point it sure seems like it had better be or they'll be out of luck.