fbpx
pga tour

‘I hate them’: Outspoken PGA Tour star slams schedule changes

James Hahn is no stranger to voicing his opinion on PGA Tour matters and he hasn't held back with some strong criticism and accusations about the new designated event schedule
 

Two-time PGA Tour winner James Hahn launched a verbal attack on the schedule changes that will introduce eight new designated events with no cuts in 2024.

Hahn didn’t mix his words when accusing the PGA Tour of prioritising the top players and branding the reasons to be purely about money – the reasons some players were scrutinised for moving to LIV Golf.

Hahn, 41, used to represent the membership on the Player Advisory Council until the end of 2022. He was replaced by Peter Malnati as a player director who Hahn has also targetted in his recent outburst.

The designated events on the new PGA Tour schedule will feature between 70 to 78 players and there is a number of ways they can qualify, but Hahn believes these changes were made to serve the players at the top of the pile.

“I mean, I hate them,” Hahn told Golfweek. “I’m gonna say exactly what 99.99 percent of fans said about players leaving for the LIV Tour.

“If our players just said, ‘We’re doing this for the money,’ I would have a lot more respect for them.

“But how they’re covering up what they’re doing and trying to make it a thing about sponsors and fans and saving opposite-field events. I think that’s all BS.

“All the big names that are talking about this ‘new product,’ if you just came out and said, ‘Hey, we’re doing this for the money,’ they want more guaranteed money and this is another way to funnel more money to the top players in the world, I’d have a lot more respect for them.

“Right now, they’re just covering their a** and saying everything that the PGA Tour basically has trained them to say, have taught them to say and try to make it not about money when everyone knows 100 percent it’s about more guaranteed money being funneled to the top players in the world.

pga tour

“We’ve been talking about money for the last two years and for them not to say that that’s not the number one reason why they’re making these changes – it’s very, very hypocritical.”

Hahn draws a parallel between the PGA Tour and LIV Golf here by speaking about guaranteed money with the absence of a cut, another feature of the Saudi-financed league that has come under fire.

Ahead of the 2023 Arnold Palmer Invitational, Rory McIlroy, Max Homa, and Scottie Scheffler all publicly explained reasons why the changes will improve the Tour product.

Alternatively, Lee Westwood, Ian Poulter, and Richard Bland of LIV Golf called the strategic alliance with the DP World Tour into question as the golf world has been split once again.

Hahn clearly doesn’t buy the words of the Tour’s main figures, but one person who does is Malnati who voted in favour of the new changes.

As World No 219 and ranked 92nd in the FedEx Cup standings, Malnati will need to accumulate enough FedEx Cup points in non-designated events to qualify for the designated events with $20 million purses.

“When I see Peter I’m going to tell him exactly what Lanto Griffin told me when I was put in that position and my mind was swayed by the executives on the board,” Hahn added.

“He said, ‘You were put there for a reason to voice the opinion of the majority of the players on the PGA Tour.’

“If he doesn’t have enough balls to sack up and vote no against it then I don’t want him on the board. We picked the wrong guy. He was put there to argue our side of the discussion.

“It’s gonna pass regardless but if he doesn’t have enough balls to vote against it and take the stance that I did and stand up for what he believes in, then he shouldn’t be on the board.

“We don’t need another person like that on the board if you can’t stick up for us. Let’s be honest, it would have passed, they had enough votes to pass. It’s just a cop-out to prevent the media, yourself, Alan Shipnucks of the world from asking him why he voted no.”

Hahn revealed that he voted against the Player Impact Program funds being increased to $100 million last season.

He seems to be vindicated as commissioner Jay Monahan announced the PIP prize pool has now been halved back to $50 million for next year.

He also questioned how Tiger Woods was able to finish top of the PIP in 2022 despite playing just three times, further suggesting the Tour is determined to feed millions to the best/most popular players.

Hahn has been one of the most outspoken figures with issues affecting the Tour with the most recent evidence of this coming on Twitter in a spat with popular golf podcast No Laying Up.

The former Wells Fargo champion plans to keep playing on the Tour despite admitting that he “can’t really hang with the younger stars of our game,” but he has never made his concerns for the 2024 schedule any clearer.

He doubts his voice was ever valued on the PAC and Malnati could have a similar experience in his new role, as the board allegedly listens more to high-profile players.

“After my first year on the board, I wanted to resign because I didn’t feel like my voice was being heard,” he said. “I felt that they were listening to Jordan (Spieth), which granted, he’s very, very smart, very well-spoken.

“He articulates his words in a way that I could never and he gets his message across. He’s a very likable person in those meetings. On and off the course, I have nothing but the most respect for Jordan.

“But you can see how when he talks that everyone’s eyes in the room just glimmer like he’s the prom queen, and everyone wants to ask her out for the dance.

“When Jordan would talk to an executive in the board meetings, that (independent director) started blushing, ‘Oh, my gosh, Jordan’s talking to me. How awesome is this?’

“Where do we go from here? I don’t know. I’m outspoken. These are my opinions. I’m just trying to make the Tour better.

“But I don’t see how taking care of the top players in the world and not taking care of the bottom players on our Tour unites us all to want to be better.”

Do you agree with the views of James Hahn? Tweet me and let me know!

Matt Chivers

Matt Chivers

Now on the wrong side of 25, Matt has been playing golf since the age of 13 and was largely inspired to take up the game by countless family members who played golf during his childhood.

Matt is a member at Royal Cinque Ports in Deal playing off a 5 handicap, just a pitching wedge away from his hometown of Dover where he went to school and grew up. He has previously been a member at Etchinghill and Walmer and Kingsdown in Kent.

Having studied history at the University of Liverpool, Matt went on to pass his NCTJ Exams in Manchester a year later to fulfil his lifelong ambition of becoming a journalist. He picked up work experience along the way at places such as the Racing Post, the Independent, Sportsbeat and the Lancashire Evening Post.

Matt joined NCG in February 2023 and is the website’s main source of tour news, features and opinion. He has reported live from events such as The Open, the Ryder Cup and The Players Championship, having also interviewed and spoken to the likes of Rory McIlroy, Tommy Fleetwood, Lee Westwood, Graeme McDowell, Henrik Stenson, to name just a few.

Consuming tour golf on what is a 24/7 basis, you can come to Matt for informed views on the game and the latest updates on the PGA Tour, DP World Tour, LPGA Tour, Ladies European Tour and LIV Golf.

What’s in Matt’s bag: Cobra LTDx LS driver, Cobra LTDx 3-wood, TaylorMade P7MC irons, Ping Glide 4.0 wedges, Odyssey putter.

Latest Posts

liv golf salaries

LIV Golf

Top earning golfers in the LIV Golf League: Who leads the pack?

By

Read full article about Top earning golfers in the LIV Golf League: Who leads the pack?
Hair today, gone tomorrow! Is there anything Bryson DeChambeau won’t try to get ahead?

LIV Golf

Which LIV golfers can play in The Open?

By

Read full article about Which LIV golfers can play in The Open?
LIV Golf

LIV Golf

Show me the money! How much has each LIV player made since signing up?

By

Read full article about Show me the money! How much has each LIV player made since signing up?
hong kong golf club

LIV Golf

Exclusive: Demand was ‘off the charts’ for LIV Golf event at historic venue

By

Read full article about Exclusive: Demand was ‘off the charts’ for LIV Golf event at historic venue
bryson dechambeau liv contract

LIV Golf

Bryson DeChambeau’s £100 million LIV deal: What is his net worth?

By

Read full article about Bryson DeChambeau’s £100 million LIV deal: What is his net worth?
liv golf andalucia payout

LIV Golf

LIV Golf Andalucia payout 2024

By

Read full article about LIV Golf Andalucia payout 2024
LIV Golf Andalucia

LIV Golf

Where is LIV Golf Andalucia?

By

Read full article about Where is LIV Golf Andalucia?
liv golf schedule 2024

LIV Golf

LIV Golf schedule 2024: Every date, venue and result

By

Read full article about LIV Golf schedule 2024: Every date, venue and result
Asian Tour 2024 schedule

LIV Golf

Asian Tour 2024 schedule and results

By

Read full article about Asian Tour 2024 schedule and results