Johnson is considered one of only two top 30 players to affix LIV Golf. (Louis Oosthuizen, ranked twenty first, is the opposite.) However the overwhelming majority of the remaining in the highest 30, who’re each the vanguard overtaking the sport and customarily of their 20s or early 30s, have stood with the PGA Tour.
Johnson is 37, and Oosthuizen is 39 and said on Tuesday that he only planned to play yet one more yr on the PGA Tour. In reality, most of the golfers who’ve committed to this week’s LIV Golf event have seen a declining world rating recently: Sergio Garcia, 42, was ranked tenth in the lads’s world rankings five years ago is now 57th; Graeme McDowell, 42, was ranked fifteenth in 2012 and is currently No. 374; Ian Poulter, 46, was ranked twelfth a decade ago and is now 92nd; Martin Kaymer, 37, the world’s top-ranked men’s golfer in 2011 is now ranked 215th.
There isn’t a inevitability that the PGA Tour’s young guard will maintain their solidarity, especially after next month’s British Open, the last major of the season, is contested. The PGA Tour schedule winds down in August when it turns toward the season-ending FedEx Cup playoffs, which awards the winner an ample $15 million. But some tour players who don’t qualify for those playoffs is likely to be enticed to enter a number of the final, lucrative LIV Golf events in September and October.
That may especially be true for golfers with lesser tour status, but they’d probably still face a suspension from the PGA Tour that would proceed into next yr. And maybe beyond. Is that price it?
The situation, and the skilled golf landscape, is evolving. Johnson, a distinguished figure in golf, and Mickelson, a fading, aging — albeit popular — golf personality, have appeared to turn their backs on the establishment. At the least temporarily, to listen to a few of Johnson’s words.
Mickelson, it’s price noting, insisted on Tuesday that he planned to maintain the lifetime PGA Tour membership he has earned in his long profession.
If it sounds knotty, have in mind it could turn out to be more tangled. The following stage of golf’s burgeoning face-off could also be in court.