DORAL, Fla. – LIV Golf is all in on the team format.
LIV Golf officials met with selected media members to discuss its future plans. This was just before Saturday’s semifinal matches at the $50 million team championship. The 12 teams were the main topic of discussion.
LIV claims it is aiming to create a business model similar to the one used by the major American team sports, including the NFL, NBA and MLB. Officials hope that franchising its teams can generate a revenue stream that will rival that generated by the Saudi Public Investment Fund.
“Our belief is that people understand team sports, even though it may not be right away. Atul Khosla, chief operating officer of LIV Golf, stated that they play team sports. They do have a favorite player, it’s no different than anywhere else. But they can relate to being part of a team. This trend could be continued in golf.
“It is a new concept in golf. But the human element of our desire to be part of the team is something that I do not understand.”
LIV believes that if you don’t like Brooks Koepka or Dustin Johnson’s 4Aces GC, LIV can still support them. LIV also supports the Smash GC and Brooks Koepka. LIV thinks its individual elements of golfers each playing their own game, calculating their score, and winning their individual prizes is sufficient.
LIV is looking to add to the professional golf scene by offering fans an alternative entertainment. LIV certainly does the latter, with music being played throughout the round and numerous activities in the fan village.
Khosla stated that a successful 2023, when the circuit moves to the 14-event LIV Golf League, will see 12 teams and brands as well as a commercialized product.
He explained that “We have to be on TV and we’ve to have corporate partners.” “Those are the things we need, these are milestones we need to reach go into next year.”
These are just a few highlights from the presentation.
The 2023 Schedule
LIV announced at the Trump National Bedminster event that it will become the LIV Golf league in 2023. It has 48 players and 12 franchises. The schedule includes 14 events. This is to expand golf’s reach “across North, Latin Americas, Asia and Australia.”
Five of the eight events held this season were in the United States. One each was in Thailand, England, and Saudi Arabia. LIV will again travel to golf-starved areas in 2023. This is similar to the 2022 schedule, which included stops near Boston, Chicago, and Portland. Expect another stop in Saudi Arabia, thanks to its Saudi backing.
It is still to be decided when these events will take place. LIV does not want to compete against the NFL. This suggests a September start and a late February finish. LIV will not compete with majors, and it won’t hold events in the week before. LIV is also avoiding “heritage events”, like the Genesis Invitational or Arnold Palmer Invitational. This makes it difficult to plan for international travel and creates a tight schedule. It has been a success to release a slow drip in news between events. This points to a November schedule release.
A transfer window and new players
Khosla did not give details about how many new players might join the league. Instead, he chose to let the player negotiations play out and instead opted to “let the negotiation play itself out.” Khosla stated that the goal is for all teams to be in agreement by the end this year. In 2023, each team will have a designated substitute. However, this is only in case of injuries.
A quasi-transfer market will bring about the most significant change in the league format. Players can transfer between teams within a certain time frame after the team championship and before starting the next season. A few trades and free agents moves can make for a fascinating offseason, with a four-month break between the season’s end and the start of the next season.
In 2023, players will be competing for $405,000,000 in total prize money. Players will also have the opportunity to win in the Asian Tour’s International Series. LIV expects players will participate in “numerous events” in this series. LIV and PIF have contributed $300 million to the Asian Tour.
LIV will own 75 percent of the 12 franchise teams, while principal players (including captains Dustin Johnson, Bryson deChambeau and Phil Mickelson) will own 25 percent. These franchises will also be subject to new costs in 2023. They will have to pay for their team budgets. This includes a player’s annual payments, incentive costs, travel costs, and overhead costs.
The future of the league could be affected by some major changes in 2023.