By Bill Speros | | 5 mins
PGA Tour Bans LIV Golf Series Players; FanDuel Not Offering LIV Odds
All golfers who play in the Saudi-backed LIV Golf Series league have been banned from the PGA Tour, Commissioner Jay Monahan said in a letter on Thursday.
The first LIV Golf event began in London on Thursday. PGA Tour players who are participating are “suspended or otherwise no longer eligible to participate in PGA Tour tournament play,” the letter said. That includes the likes of Sergio Garcia and Phil Mickelson, as well as those that announced their resignation from the PGA Tour earlier this week.
BetMGM is also offering LIV Golf Series odds, where allowed by state regulators. At BetMGM, Johnson is +500 and has the highest ticket count (17.4%) and highest handle (25.9%) of any individual player. Mickelson remains the book’s top liability at +3000 with 6.1% of the betting handle.
Individual LIV Golf odds were first available for golf betting fans at the Westgate SuperBook in Las Vegas earlier this week.
LIV Golf London Event Odds
Here are select golf odds for the LIV Series opening event in London, listed by ticket count.
PGA Tour Ban Does Not Include Majors
The PGA Tour ban extends to the Presidents Cup and the PGA Tour Championship. It does not include any of golf’s four major championships since they are run by other governing bodies. The ban means that Dustin Johnson, Phil Mickelson, Kevin Na and 14 other players playing this week in London have been officially booted from the Tour. Those players will also be removed from the FedExCup Points list. Nor will they be permitted to play in any PGA Tour events via an exemption.
The PGA Tour ban also applies to any golfers who play in future LIV Series events. Patrick Reed and Bryson DeChambeau are reportedly set to join the first LIV Golf tour stop in the United States. That is set for Pumpkin Ridge in Portland, Oregon, on June 30-July 2.
Several players, including Johnson, had previously resigned from the Tour. Mickelson was paid a reported $200 million to join the eight-event LIV series. Johnson got an estimated $125 million. That’s more than Tiger Woods has earned in total playing as a pro since he joined the PGA Tour in 1996.
In a letter, PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan slammed the golfers who jumped ship by saying they “turned their backs on the PGA Tour.” The LIV players “did not receive the necessary conflicting events and media rights releases” and he added participation in the LIV Golf Series is “in violation” of tournament regulations.
The move is the first official counterstrike made by the PGA Tour since Johnson made his move to LIV official last week. Several PGA Tour players, including Tiger Woods, have been clear that they have no plans to join LIV Golf and have condemned the league for its ties to the Saudi royal family.
Decisions Made For ‘Financial-Based’ Reasons
The money reportedly paid to Mickelson and Johnson, and the prize winnings for each LIV event, demonstrate what is at stake for the PGA Tour.
“These players have made their choice for their own financial-based reasons. But they can’t demand the same PGA Tour benefits, considerations, opportunities and platforms as you. That exception disrespects you, our fan and our partners,” Monahan said in his letter.
The players named in Monahan’s letter are:
- Sergio Garcia
- Talor Gooch
- Branden Grace
- Dustin Johnson
- Matt Jones
- Martin Kaymer
- Graeme McDowell
- Phil Mickelson
- Kevin Na
- Andy Ogletree
- Louis Oosthuizen
- Turk Petit
- Charl Schwartzel
- Hudson Swafford
- Peter Uihlien
- Lee Westwood
Monahan’s note came a day after the USGA issued a statement saying anyone who is eligible for the U.S. Open will be able to play next week when the national championship returns to The Country Club in Brookline, Massachusetts.
Several LIV players, including Mickelson, Johnson, Garcia, Gooch and Na are set to play next week in the U.S Open.