By Ryan Bologna
Some might have thought that the LIV Tour wasn’t going to hang around for long, but it’s here to stay. Many notable golfers have left the PGA Tour for the LIV Tour. Why is that the case, and what are the main differences between the two tours? Here’s everything you need to know.
There are some stark differences when comparing the two tours. Here are all of those differences at a glance:
|LIV Tour||PGA Tour|
|2022 Average Purse||$25 Million||$10.23 Million|
|Starting Format||Shotgun Start||Tee Time|
|Winners||Individual + Team||Individual|
|Dress Code||Shorts Allowed||No Shorts|
First of all, the average purse for a LIV Tour event is so much more than a PGA Tour event. Of course, the moral questions come into play with the LIV Tour being Saudi-backed. Players who have joined the tour have been criticized for taking “blood money”. Others have responded by saying that nearly every organization is tied to Saudi money in some way. It really is up to the individual to form their own opinions on this topic.
Putting that aside, it seems that the LIV Tour has forced the PGA Tour’s into making changes. The PGA Tour announced that it will return to a calendar-year schedule in 2024, revise the field sizes for the FedEx Cup Playoffs, and increase purses for eight tournaments. Phil Mickelson said that the LIV Tour caused disruption that led to these changes. The reality is, with top golfers like Dustin Johnson and Cameron Smith leaving for the LIV Tour, the PGA Tour had to do something to close the gap when it came to money.
There are also significant differences between the formats of the events. The biggest difference is that LIV Tour events are three rounds long while PGA Tour events are four rounds. When taking the money into consideration, that is technically more money for less work. It’s easy to see why golfers are joining the tour. LIV tournaments also take up less time each day, because they run a shotgun start format, meaning each player starts on different holes and there is less waiting around for a specific tee time.
Arguably the biggest difference for viewers is the team aspect when it comes to the LIV Tour. Before each event, a draft is held and teams of four are constructed. For the first two rounds, the two best scores are combined to determine that team’s score, and on the last day the best three scores are used for the team component. The winning team splits $3 million.
The LIV Tour has also been more lax when it comes to the dress code. The tour announced it would allow competitors to wear shorts during competition ahead of its event in Boston.
The LIV Tour is trying to change the way golf is traditionally viewed. The shorts are an example of that, along with the bigger purses and other rules. Players seem to embrace that as well. Johnson is a big name in golf and has been present on Instagram and Twitter since joining the LIV Tour. My only piece of advice is that maybe he should change his Twitter handle.
That’s awkward. But I’m sure the LIV Tour can live with it, especially if Johnson is sinking puts like this to win tournaments.
So that sums up the LIV Tour. It has shaken up the golf world, and it isn’t going away any time soon.
Photo Credit: L.E.MORMILE