US Sportsbooks Split On LIV Golf Series Odds Ahead Of 1st Event; DJ Quits PGA Tour
Bill Speros | 7 mins
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Dustin Johnson resigned from the PGA Tour Tuesday, just two days before the first event in the Saudi-backed LIV Golf Series begins in London. The news was just the latest in a series of developments this week that have roiled the pro golf world and left sportsbooks in the United States split on whether they will take action on the rebel league.
Johnson joined LIV Golf last week. The series officially landed Phil Mickelson on Monday. Pro Kevin Na left the PGA Tour during this past weekend when he committed to the eight-event LIV schedule. Here's a look at whether odds are available, the series schedule, and the latest news featuring the players.
Legal online sportsbooks in the United States outside of Nevada are yet to post odds on the event, which begins Thursday. They are also split on whether or not they even plan to take bets on it.
DraftKings has been approved to offer LIV odds in Illinois, Oregon, Ontario, Connecticut, Arizona and Wyoming, and it posted them on Tuesday afternoon. That book has Johnson as a +400 favorite to win the individual title this week, with Talor Gooch the second pick at +900.
BetMGM says it will offer odds on the LIV Golf Series if it gets approval from state regulators. A spokesman for WynnBET told Bookies.com it will not be offering any odds on the LIV event in London.
Individual LIV odds are also available at the Westgate SuperBook in Las Vegas. The team captains' draw for the 12 teams was held Tuesday in London.
About $170 million in prize money is available for the teams and individuals over the eight events on the schedule.
Mickelson has not played competitive golf since missing the cut at the Farmers Open in January. He will be paid a reported $200 million to join the LIV Golf stable. Lefty's move means two of the top three money-winners of all time on the PGA Tour will be playing LIV Golf this year.
Johnson is getting paid $125 million to play in the Saudi-backed league. For simply joining the LIV Series, Lefty and DJ each got more money than Tiger Woods has won all-time playing on the PGA Tour (or any other PGA Tour golfer ever). Woods has made close to $121 million in his 26 years of pro golf. Mickelson is second all-time on the PGA Tour earnings list and Johnson is third. Tiger reportedly turned down a $1 billion offer to join LIV.
Since the Big Cat turned pro on Aug. 27, 1996, he’s won $120,895,206 on the PGA Tour. That is No. 1 on the all-time money list. Thousands, if not millions, of golf betting fans have also won plenty of money backing Tiger.
Johnson slipped to 15th in this week’s Official World Golf Rankings after sitting out the Memorial Tournament this past weekend. He won the 2016 U.S. Open, 2020 Masters and has 24 PGA Tour victories. Mickelson, 51, said via an announcement on Twitter that he still plans to play in golf's four majors but did not mention competing in any other PGA Tour events.
LIV Golf Controversy, Details & Schedule
Rory McIlroy, Woods and several other pros have openly condemned and shunned the LIV Golf Series because of its financial ties to the Saudi royal family.
The inaugural LIV Invitational Series event begins Thursday in London. Among other notables in the 48-player field: Sergio Garcia, Louis Oosthuizen and Ian Poulter.
The golfers who quit the PGA Tour will likely be ineligible for the Ryder Cup. But both Johnson and Mickelson have exemptions that allow them to play in major events for several years. Johnson's U.S. Open win earned him a 10-year exemption in that event. His Masters victory earned Open Championship and PGA Championship exemptions through 2026, plus a lifetime Masters invite.
Mickelson was the first current player who openly supported LIV Golf and spoke against the relative monopoly of the PGA Tour.
Na resigned from the PGA Tour on Saturday rather than face any punishment or sanctions from the Tour for playing in the LIV Golf Series.
There are eight LIV events this season. When online golf odds become available outside of Nevada for the first event at Centurion GC, this page will be updated. Here’s a look at the full schedule:
2022 LIV Golf Series Schedule
How Is LIV Golf Different From PGA Tour?
The LIV format differs from a typical PGA Tour event in several ways. LIV events are 54 holes, there is no cut, and each event only features 48 players. Golfers are grouped into 12 teams, with individual and team competition each week. Each event features a shotgun start, which means there are no tee times.
The lowest 54-hole stroke-play score wins that week’s event. The player with the most ranking points after seven events will be named the Individual Champion.
The team championship starts on Oct. 28 at Trump National Doral in Miami and is the final event of the 2022 season. The LIV Golf Series will be streamed on LIVGolf.com, YouTube and Facebook.