PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan reiterates punishment for any player joining rival tour, say sources
CHARLOTTE, N.C. – When the threat of a competing global tour emerged in early 2020, PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan sent a clear message to his membership. On Tuesday at Quail Hollow Club he leaned into that message, according to sources who attended a player-only meeting with the commissioner.
Following a report Tuesday that the Saudi Arabian-backed “Super Golf League” had offered $30 million contracts to some of the Tour’s top players – including world No. 1 Dustin Johnson, Brooks Koepka, Justin Rose and Phil Mickelson – Monahan reiterated that any player who joins the start-up circuit will face immediate suspension and likely permanent expulsion from the Tour.
The Telegraph Sport reported Tuesday that the Super Golf League, which had splintered from the Premier Golf League, was pushing top players to commit to the circuit, which would feature F1-style teams and an international schedule with plans to start play in September 2022.
Monahan acknowledged the new league poses a competitive threat and that the Tour was aware that officials from the proposed circuit have been recruiting many of the game’s top players the last few weeks in Florida. He also echoed his promise to protect the Tour and its players and sponsors.
According to one player who attended the meeting, Monahan said he was not aware of any communication between officials with the Super Golf League and any of the major championships or various media companies that might be included in a new broadcast agreement.
The commissioner also addressed the Player Impact Program, which was created this year, and explained that the initiative is designed to encourage top players to become more invested in the Tour and fan engagement.
The program, which will be based on several measurements including a player’s Q-rating and social media engagement, is designed to reward the Tour’s most impactful players via a $40 million bonus pool.