EDIT(6/7): For the part mentioned in the title, scroll down to the heading ” It Took The Balls Right Off Jay Monahan”
The news dropped this morning. The PGA and rival LIV Golf have agreed to merge. Shemon & Sheppard interviewed former PGA Pro Mark Lye. And Mark did not hide his thoughts on PGA Commissioner Jay Monahan. (I used a transcription program from the on air interview. Please pardon any misspellings, the program isn’t perfect. If you’d rather listen to the audio, it’s posted after the text.)
Craig: The details are thin, but the news is big. Mark Lye played many, many years on the PGA Tour and he even played with us once. And we’ll never do that again.
Pete: He saw you hit a record 15 houses on 18 fairway.
Craig: Fiddlesticks. Yeah. Mark Lee, welcome. It’s good to talk to you again. How are you, Mark?
Mark: I’m pleased that I distinguish the rest of the play. Okay. Yeah. Okay. All right. Well, people getting the wrong idea. Yeah. Oh, yeah. Hey, man, I was building all this stuff.
Pete: No, no, I can’t.
Craig: How about you? In this day and age where nothing leaks and all of a sudden the news is out and nobody knew it was coming. That is maybe the most amazing part to me. But as a former player, and you’ve seen how the LIV thing has reacted with the PGA back and forth the last year and a half. What’s your reaction now? Do you hear that they’re their bed partners?
Mark: Okay. So I’m not going to tell you that. You know, I spent a few years trying to get onto the PGA Tour, and there are two entities, the PGA of America, which are closed, and the PGA Tour, the PGA Tour, the mercenaries like me that went out there for, you know, 18, 19 years and tried to make a living with prize money. So the PGA Tour has always been ruthless in their handling of players and releases. You know, if Tiger wanted to go to, say, Saudi Arabia and play in tournaments. They would say yay or nay. And Tiger would say, you better say yes because it’s worth 2 million bucks to me. So I think in this day and age, you know, fast forward to 2022 to 2023.
You know, the players like Rahm and Phil and Rory, you know, these guys, the money that they could play and make every week overseas is comprehensive. I mean, it’s, you know, a million, million and a half, 2 million plus $50,000 in jet fuel plus, you know, the prize money that they win. Push came to shove, when Phil got turned down to play in an event. And also he found out that he owed his life to the PGA Tour after, you know, he played for 30 years out there and won six majors in 45 events or whatever he has won. And then he just said, you know, this is B.S. I’ve been working for you guys, which basically he was doing.
And Tiger, in some way, they aren’t really independent contractors.
You know, they call them independent contractors, but they couldn’t go and do whatever they wanted to do when and where they want to do it. So this came up, guys, and basically all the Saudis, the LIV Tour and the PIF. I don’t even know what of public investment fund or something. And then the LIV I don’t know what that means. They came up with a better plan, a better mousetrap. And so a lot of the PGA Tour kind of grasping at straws here. How do we combat that? Well they couldn’t combat that.
Well, they don’t have oil wells. They don’t have huge investments in them behind them. And they claim that they were, you know, a nonprofit organization, which to me is I don’t think they’ve ever been a nonprofit organization, but somehow they got a windfall anyway. My whole synopsis was that Jay Monahan and the tour were just completely played. They got beat at the game and now it’s going to be very interesting to see how they backtrack all those nasty things that they’ve been saying about, number one, the players. Number two, the Saudis and about three companies that have dealt with the Saudis in a big way.
And it’s kind of amazing to me as a player and a guy that’s been fairly, you know, involved in the I guess I would call it the media, you know, 20 years as a player, 25 years in the media, I could kind of see another angle to this. Well, it only happens. And I think that the LIV and the PIF and the PGA Tour, I honestly do, because I’ve seen the tour before in action for years and they never caved, guys. Not once have they ever caved. This time they did. So what do you guys think? Who had the upper hand on this?