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Tuesday, April 16, 2024
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Koepka’s Major Triumph Gives LIV Golf New Life

  • Brooks Koepka becomes first current LIV Golf member to win a major championship.
  • Victory muddles LIV-PGA Tour feud with future of pro golf uncertain.
Adam Cairns-USA TODAY Sports

Brooks Koepka’s two-shot victory over Scottie Scheffler and Viktor Hovland at the PGA Championship vaulted the 33-year-old into golf history and fueled LIV Golf’s ongoing battle with the PGA Tour.

The win gave Koepka his fifth major championship, the same number as legends like Seve Ballesteros and Byron Nelson. The $3.15 million paycheck is actually less than the $4 million Koepka took home from his most recent victory on the LIV series last month in Orlando. 

The PGA Championship this year boosted its overall purse to $17.5 million, up from the $15 million it shelled out last year.

Koepka held a one-shot lead heading into Sunday’s final round and was able to clinch victory after losing his 54-hole lead at the Masters to Jon Rahm. The win is the first major championship for a player currently competing on LIV and will almost certainly be a talking point for the controversial series as it moves ahead.

Three LIV golfers finished in the top 10, with Bryson DeChambeau at T-4 and Cam Smith at T-9. At Augusta National, Koepka and fellow LIV golfers Phil Mickelson and Patrick Reed gave the circuit three golfers in the top five.

The biggest takeaway from Koepka’s triumph is that competing on LIV instead of the PGA Tour does not automatically take a player out of major form. But the larger question will be whether LIV can parlay Koepka’s performance into more interest in the league weekly.

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