It's all change for the PGA Tour as the circuit fights fire with fire in the war against LIV Golf. Here are the five things you need to know
After the crisis PGA Tour players’ meeting which everyone wanted to be at, but no one seemed to know anything about, Commissioner Jay Monahan has finally shed light on the changes which will ensue in 2023 following the emergency talks.
As expected, and in an effort to counter the ongoing threat of LIV Golf, more money will be thrown at the PGA Tour in a bid to keep its star players and compensate up-and-coming talent.
There were also plenty of other big reveals as Monahan addressed the public ahead of the Tour Championship, so here are the five things you need to know.
1. Star names to make ‘unprecedented commitments’
To kick things off, Monahan revealed players who finish inside the top 20 of the Player Impact Program (PIP) must commit to playing in at least 20 PGA Tour events, which includes 12 elevated tournaments, The Players Championship, The Masters, and three FedEx Cup events of each player’s choosing. In layman’s terms, more golf, and more money for the PGA Tour’s best.
2. The controversial PIP will be expanded
Throwing further financial reward for bringing in the big bucks, it was also announced the PIP itself will be expanded. Whereas 10 players were previously rewarded under the program, 20 players will now receive a bonus from an elevated $100 million pool for bringing a “positive impact” into the business.
How is PIP judged? Well, the criteria is based on factors such as Google searches, social media reach, global media mentions and how often a player is featured on broadcast.
3. A new program will be launched
Now onto helping those further down the ladder, Monahan announced the launch of a new initiative – the ‘Earnings Assurance Program’ – which guarantees each exempt PGA Tour member (Korn Ferry Tour category and above) a minimum of $500,000 up front, before any golf is played. In return, players must participate in at least 15 events.
4. Players will be compensated
For those not falling into any of the above brackets, it was confirmed that all non-exempt members will receive $5,000 for every missed cut. On top of that, and something which will certainly please James Hahn, travel/tournament expenses will be paid for, with none of the money impacting event purses.
5. There’s no way back for LIV’s rebels (well, maybe not)
Last, but certainly not least, things got a little messy when Monahan was inevitably questioned about the prospect of LIV’s golfers wanting back on the PGA Tour. “No”. Replied the Commissioner when asked if players who had switched allegiances would be allowed to return.
“They’ve joined the LIV Golf Series and they’ve made that commitment,” he continued. “As I’ve been clear throughout, every player has a choice, and I respect their choice, but they’ve made it.”
But, when the topic then came up again at the end of the press conference, Monahan seemed less assertive in his answer with LIV’s lawsuit looming.
“We are in a lawsuit. They have sued us, and talking about hypotheticals doesn’t make any sense.”
As always, watch this space.
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