Thu, 28 Sep 2023

LIV Golf timeline: From rival league to PGA merger

Field Level Media
07 Jun 2023, 06:19 GMT+10

Just three days shy of the one-year anniversary of its first event outside London, LIV Golf announced a landmark merger with the PGA Tour and DP World Tour on Tuesday.

The Public Investment Fund (PIF) will make a capital investment into the combined venture.

A timeline of events for the Saudi-backed league:

January 2020: Format for a proposed new Premier Golf League is solidified. PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan informs PGA Tour players that they will not be allowed to compete on both circuits.

November 2020: DP World Tour and PGA Tour announce strategic alliance.

October 2021: Greg Norman named CEO of LIV Golf Investments, with backing from PIF.

February 2022: Comments Phil Mickelson makes to golf author Alan Shipnuck are published online, revealing Mickelson called Saudi businessmen "scary mother------s" to work with but said he will continue to do so in spite of understanding the kingdom's human rights abuses. Facing severe criticism, Mickelson later apologizes and says he is taking time away from golf.

March 2022: LIV Golf reveals schedule for inaugural season with eight events and $255 million in prize money. Monahan says the PGA Tour is "moving on" and that "we always will be focused on legacy, not leverage."

June 9, 2022: First LIV event begins outside of London, and the PGA Tour suspends members who participate.

August 2022: Eleven LIV players file an antitrust lawsuit against the PGA Tour, alleging unlawful monopoly and restraint of trade. Monahan announces overhaul of tour's schedule, including the addition of designated events with most purses rising to $20 million.

September 2022: PGA Tour files counterclaim lawsuit against the PIF and its governor, Yasir Othman Al-Rumayyan. Among other things, the lawsuit accuses LIV Golf of tortiously interfering with the tour's contracts with golfers who signed with the rival league.

November 2022: Rory McIlroy urges Norman to end the "stalemate" in the professional golf world, while Tiger Woods says Norman "has to go" so "we can all talk freely."

January 2023: PGA Tour files a motion to add PIF to its countersuit against LIV Golf for interfering with its contracts with players who joined the new league.

April 2023: DP World Tour wins arbitration case against LIV Golf, with fines and suspensions for playing in the 2022 LIV London event upheld.

May 2023: Brooks Koepka wins 2023 PGA Championship, less than one year after signing with LIV Golf.

June 6, 2023: Merger announced and all litigation ended. Monahan will serve as CEO and Al-Rumayyan will be the chairman of the new entity.

--Field Level Media

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