LIV Golf landed Phil Mickelson.
And they tried to get Tiger Woods, too.
In an interview with the Washington Post, LIV Golf Investments CEO and commissioner Greg Norman said the Saudi-funded rival league of the PGA Tour made a monstrous offer to Woods, and the 15-time champion turned it down.
“Mind-blowingly enormous,” Norman said of the offer made to Woods. “We’re talking about high nine digits.”
The comments from Norman, who is a former two-time major champion and world No. 1 golfer, come after The Telegraph reported Dustin Johnson received around $125 million to join LIV Golf. Legend Jack Nicklaus also said he turned down over $100 million to be associated with the league.
While Woods hasn’t commented on the alleged high-nine-figure offer he got, the 46-year-old did throw his support behind the PGA Tour last month in the wake of Mickelson’s infamous criticism of the Tour.
“I understand different viewpoints, but I believe in legacies. I believe in major championships. I believe in big events, comparisons to historical figures of the past,” Woods said, via the Associated Press. “There’s plenty of money out here. The Tour is growing. But it’s just like any other sport — it’s like tennis — you have to go out there and earn it. You’ve got to go out there and play for it. We have opportunity to go ahead and do it. It’s just not guaranteed up front.
“Phil has said some things that I think a lot of us who are committed to the Tour and committed to the legacy of the tour have pushed back against, and he’s taken some personal time, and we all understand that. But I think that some of his views on how the Tour could be run, should be run, been a lot of disagreement there.”
Mickelson on Monday became the sixth former major champion to sign up for the breakaway league, joining Dustin Johnson, Sergio Garcia, Louis Oosthuizen, Martin Kaymer and Charl Schwartzel. The LIV Golf Invitational, which is the league’s inaugural event being held outside of London starting Friday, will award $4 million to the winner and $25 million total in prize money.
The PGA Tour did not grant releases for any of its 14 members who signed up to play in the first of LIV Golf’s eight planned tournaments this year. At least six of those 14 players have already resigned their Tour memberships, including Garcia, Oosthuizen, Schwartzel, Branden Grace and Kevin Na.