The PGA Tour has agreed to merge with the President Donald Trump-endorsed rival LIV Golf, according to reports.
The merger comes as part of a deal that would see the end of pending litigation and a possible Justice Department antitrust case.
According to CNBC: “The two entities signed an agreement that would combine the PGA Tour and LIV Golf’s commercial businesses and rights into a new, yet-to-be-named for-profit company.
“The agreement includes DP World Tour, also known as the European PGA Tour.
“As part of the agreement, the three groups will establish ‘a fair and objective process for any players who want to re-apply for membership with the PGA Tour or DP World Tour’ following the end of the 2023 season, according to a release.”
The PGA infamously banned events from Trump golf courses, as Slay News reported.
In response, Trump went all in with rival LIV Golf.
That league hosted a few tournaments at Trump resorts.
It now looks like Trump will finally get a major tournament at one of his golf courses.
Trump said: “A BIG, BEAUTIFUL, AND GLAMOROUS DEAL FOR THE WONDERFUL WORLD OF GOLF”
Trump calls news of PGA- LIV tour merger “A BIG, BEAUTIFUL, AND GLAMOROUS DEAL FOR THE WONDERFUL WORLD OF GOLF”
Trump’s properties have hosted the Saudi-backed LIV Tour, run by Trump friend and pro-golfer Greg Norman pic.twitter.com/2H0Y2xkdSW
— Meridith McGraw (@meridithmcgraw) June 6, 2023
BREAKING: PGA Tour agrees to merge with Saudi-backed rival LIV Golf https://t.co/Q6aWvAc3A7
— CNBC Now (@CNBCnow) June 6, 2023
The Department of Justice was investigating the PGA over possible antitrust violations to see if the tour engaged in anticompetitive behavior as it battles for turf with the LIV Golf Series.
According to The Wall Street Journal: “The Department of Justice is investigating whether the PGA Tour engaged in anticompetitive behavior as it battles the upstart, Saudi-backed LIV Golf circuit, the PGA Tour confirmed to The Wall Street Journal.
“Players’ agents have received inquiries from the DOJ’s antitrust division involving both the PGA Tour’s bylaws governing players’ participation in other golf events, and the PGA Tour’s actions in recent months relating to LIV Golf, according to a person familiar with those inquiries.”
The PGA Tour suspended all players who are playing in the new LIV Golf Series.
Many of the players gave up their membership to join the new league but some were hoping to play both.
PGA Commissioner Jay Monahan sent a memo to the PGA TOUR’s membership that said:
“Their participation in the Saudi Golf League/LIV Golf event is in violation of our Tournament Regulations.
“The same fate holds true for any other players who participate in future Saudi Golf League events in violation of our Regulations.
“Also in accordance with PGA TOUR Tournament Regulations, the players who have resigned their membership will be removed from the FedExCup Points List when the official statistics following the RBC Canadian Open are posted on Sunday evening.
“These players will not be permitted to play in PGA TOUR tournaments as a non-member via a sponsor exemption or any other eligibility category.
“These players have made their choice for their own financial-based reasons.
“But they can’t demand the same PGA TOUR membership benefits, considerations, opportunities, and platform as you.
“That expectation disrespects you, our fans, and our partners.
“Trust that we’re prepared to deal with those questions and we’ll approach them in the same we have this entire process: by being transparent and respecting the PGA TOUR regulations that you helped establish.”
“I am certain our fans and partners – who are surely tired of all this talk of money, money, and more money – will continue to be entertained and compelled by the world-class competition you display each and every week, where there are true consequences for every shot you take and your rightful place in history whenever you reach that elusive winner’s circle.
“This week, the RBC Canadian Open is a shining example of what you have created with the PGA TOUR: a star-studded field, a committed sponsor, sold-out hospitality offerings, record crowds, and a global broadcast distribution.
“These elements are part of the TOUR’s DNA, built by the likes of Jack and Arnie, furthered by Tiger and countless others – whose legacies are inextricably linked, with each other and with the PGA TOUR.
“This collective legacy can’t be bought or sold,” he wrote.