The Masters’ TV partners seemed to go out of their way to not say the letters L-I-V, but numbers indicate Sunday’s final-round duel between the PGA Tour’s Jon Rahm and LIV Golf’s Brooks Koepka drew massive viewership for CBS Sports.
With rain shortening Saturday’s third round, CBS aired the remainder and final round on Sunday, a 29-hole marathon as Rahm chased down and beat Koepka and fellow LIV Golf superstar Phil Mickelson by four shots.
- The two rounds generated 16.3 million viewers for CBS — the most-watched golf telecast on any network since the Masters’ 2018 final round averaged 13 million.
- CBS’ final-round coverage alone averaged 12.1 million viewers, up 19% vs. last year.
- Viewership peaked at more than 15 million viewers as Rahm, the PGA Tour’s leading money-winner, slipped on his first Green Jacket.
- Sunday’s final round was the most-streamed ever on Paramount+, which recorded double-digit growth in households, minutes, and average minute audience over last year’s final round.
- CBS also benefited from strong out-of-home viewing on Easter Sunday.
The 2023 Masters was important for LIV, too. Kopeka, Mickelson, and Patrick Reed showed they could trade blows on golf’s biggest stage with the PGA Tour’s Rahm, Scottie Scheffler, and Rory McIlroy (who missed the cut).
The 52-year-old Mickelson produced some of the biggest crowd roars Sunday as he became the oldest golfer to finish in the Top 5, charging to a closing-round 65.