There's been plenty of reaction to the PGA Tour, LiveGolf, the DP World Tour, announcing their merger today. Most of it has been shock.
Players apparently have been upset. My first thought went local though, and wanting to know what this meant, if anything, for the Wyndham Championship, golf here in the Greater Triad, and accepting our invitation to come on on a pretty quick turnaround is Mark Brazel, the Executive Director of the Wyndham Championship that is kind enough to be with us here. I know you just had a press conference, so I hope a lot of this isn't redundant, Mark, but how did you learn about the news this morning? I learned the same way everybody else did, Josh. I hope you're doing well, by the way. I am.
Thank you. Just this morning, I'm not even sure what time that was, but it kind of came across the wire on MSNBC and CNBC. My phone blew up with texts. I went to the PGA Tour's app and learned and saw the news and read through that press release a couple of times, and then I've kind of been watching the Golf Channel most of the day. There's some obviously interesting analysis going on with that. It's obviously a big day for the game of golf.
I learned about it like everybody else. I think that one of the most important things that happened with this was that nobody knew about it, and the confidentiality of it all was the success of it, to be honest with you. That's what Keith Pelley, who's the Chief Executive of the DP World Tour, which is the European Tour, he talked about, and just a handful of people in the world that knew about it, and looks like they've got it done.
This is where we're aligned, though. I know when I first see this headline, the first thing I think about is where my feet are at, and I think about the triad. I know when news like this breaks, especially if you're learning the same way I do, the first place your head goes is talking about the tournament that you're responsible for and that you care so much about. What did you immediately think of when this dropped in relation to the Wyndham Championship?
Well, as it relates to what's going to happen at Sedgefield in less than two months, it didn't make me think, oh goodness, this is going to change everything. It's not going to change anything for the 2023 Wyndham Championship, and I would be very surprised if it had much to do with any of our years out, 2024, 2025, 2026. I still think we'll be that tournament right before the playoffs, and I don't really see the PGA Tour schedule changing all that much, but I could be wrong about that. I think that a lot of people are looking at this as the PGA Tour and DP World Tour have now merged with LivGolf, if you want to call it the Public Investment Fund, PIF, of Saudi Arabia. I guess that's one way of looking at it. I would actually say that, in my opinion, they've created a new commercial entity to unify golf under this one new, call it Global Golf Alliance. They haven't come up with a name for it yet, but they've basically got a new entity where the PGA Tour and LivGolf and the European Tour will live, and then probably some others will come and join this.
In other words, to clarify, in other words, yes, we're under the same umbrella, but you wouldn't know it, perhaps. These leagues could still operate in similar silos that they do right now. I think that's what will happen. I think that at the end of the day, there could be some movement in the schedule here and there. I just don't think that we'll be a part of it. I think that the playoffs will remain. The final three events of the year will be that one right before it. You're right.
That's the first thing I thought of. How is this going to affect the Windham Championship? Nothing for 2023. I feel confident that 2024 and beyond will be okay. When you say nothing about 2023, Mark Brazel's with us here, Executive Director of the Windham Championship.
I know you have close relationships with players who are on the Liv Tour who love Sedgefield. Are you confident players like Harold Varner or Patrick Reed will be able to compete at Sedgefield a couple of months from now if they wanted to? No, that will not happen. That won't happen until 2024. I think that all of this, and this is just my reading of it, I think all of that will, because Liv still has eight tournaments and those players still have to play those tournaments.
There's actually one right up against us in West Virginia. They'll have to play those events. I think all of this will have to flush out at the end of this year and then I guess the new entity will begin in the beginning of 2024. Last thing I really have here, given what we read in the release, the thing that stood out to me was the inclusion of Team Golf in the press release. Do you think there is a place in the PGA Tour for Team Golf? Is there a place under the PGA Tour umbrella for that? I don't think there is. That doesn't mean that in New Orleans, for the Zurich, that is Team Golf. It's two guys who team up as one team. We have that and then you have the President's Cup, you have the Ryder Cup.
I don't really think you can do it. The reason why, and this is one of the reasons I have against Liv receiving World Golf points, is when you're playing individual golf, it needs to be pure. You can't have another competition going on like a team competition.
You may say, you know what, for the sake of the team winning, let's lay up here instead of going for it like I would if I was trying to win the tournament. That's not pure golf. That's not pure individual golf as we know it. That's more Team Golf. I don't really know if they'll get to that point. I'm kind of hoping not.
I don't like it because, again, when you're playing Team Golf, you may be thinking and reacting to the team part of the competition instead of the individual part of the competition. Mark Brazel, how many text messages today? Ballpart. Ooh, it's probably like 75 or 80. Yeah. That sounds like a normal day. Nope, that's not a normal day.
Mark Brazel. That does not include family and friends. That's just this topic right here. Well, I feel assured, speaking to you, I know a lot of people have similar concerns that we both had when you immediately see this, wondering how it might affect the golf tournament. As things continue to come out, I know you're always so readily accessible, and we appreciate that.
We're looking forward to the event in just a couple of months. We'll have to talk about it again sometime soon. Thanks, Josh. I would also just like to say I'm a big fan of the Commissioner of the PGA Tour. I've always stood with him. Even though I don't know the details of all this, I do think that he knows what he's doing.
I am for this in so many ways, especially the way that we can get rid of all the litigation and hopefully grow the game and make all the players happier. I think those are all good things. Appreciate you saying that. Thanks for the time, Mark. Yep.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-06-06 23:06:27 / 2023-06-06 23:10:00 / 4