Greg Norman: Tiger Woods Rejected at Least $700M From LIV Golf
Tiger Woods’s recent comments on LIV Golf and commissioner Greg Norman made it clear he had virtually no interest in competing on the controversial tour.
Last month, the legendary golfer told reporters he felt Norman has “done some things that I don’t think are in the best interest of our game’’ while passionately expressing his disappointment in those who opted to play in the LIV Golf Invitational Series. The remarks all but confirmed his unwavering indifference to LIV Golf after Norman told The Washington Post in June Woods, 46, turned down a “mind-blowingly enormous” offer in the “high nine digits.”
While he declined to discuss the specifics of the offer at the time, Norman reportedly offered some insight into the proposed deal in a recent interview with Fox News’ Tucker Carlson. According to Sam Stein of Politico, Norman revealed LIV Golf offered to pay Woods a sum in the range of $700 to $800 million to join the tour.
“That number was out there before I became CEO,” he told Carlson during last weekend’s LIV Golf Invitational Series event at Trump National Golf Club Bedminster in New Jersey, per ESPN. “Look, Tiger is a needle mover, right? So, of course you’re got to look at the best of the best. They had originally approached Tiger before I became CEO. That number is somewhere in that neighborhood.”
At a time where numerous PGA Tour golfers have defected to LIV Golf over large, guaranteed paydays just for agreeing to join, Woods spoke critically of the startup and its approach prior to the British Open on July 12.
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“What these players are doing for guaranteed money, what is the incentive to practice? What is the incentive to go out there and earn it in the dirt? You’re just getting paid a lot of money up front and playing a few events and playing 54 holes,” Woods said, per Sports Illustrated’s Bob Harig. “They’re playing blaring music and have all these atmospheres that are different.
“I don’t see how that move is positive for a lot of these players in the long term, especially if the LIV organization doesn’t get world ranking points and the major championships change their criteria for entering the events.’’
LIV Golf is still awaiting a decision after recently submitting its formal request to the Official World Golf Ranking organization to receive world ranking points for its events, a decision that could greatly impact how the league does business going forward.
As for Woods, it remains unclear what his future might hold after he missed the cut at The Open Championship, and emotionally walked off the course to a standing ovation. The event was Woods’s third of the year and came on the heels of his early withdrawal from the PGA Championship in May due to physical discomfort.
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The author of 5 books, 3 of which are New York Times bestsellers. I’ve been published in more than 100 newspapers and magazines and am a frequent commentator on NPR.