Critical player support for Jay Monahan throughout the PGA Tour’s competitive and legal fight with LIV Golf is now splintering in the wake of the organization’s historic merger with its former bitter rival.
Anger and frustration immediately swept through the ranks in different forms. Players like Wesley Bryan were partly upset to only learn of the news on Twitter, a situation furthered by Monahan reportedly conducting a seven-week negotiation aided by just two Tour board members.
The 12-year pro tweeted, “I feel betrayed, and will not be able to trust anyone within the corporate structure of the PGA Tour for a very long time.”
Others such as Byeong Hun An focused more on lost economic opportunities, calling the deal “a big lose [sic] for [those] who defended the Tour for the last two years.”
Mackenzie Hughes and Dylan Wu found themselves grappling once again with the difficult politics and alleged hypocrisy surrounding the Saudi’s backing of the new commercial entity overseeing men’s pro golf.
The country’s widely rebuked record on human rights and frequent accusations of sportswashing motivated some players’ loyalty to the PGA Tour. It was also a foundation of the Tour’s prior stance against LIV Golf.
“So weird. PGA [Tour] officials were in my office just months ago talking about how the Saudis’ human rights record should disqualify them from having a stake in a major American sport,” tweeted Connecticut Sen. Chris Murphy. “I guess maybe their concerns weren’t really about human rights?”
Key Monahan allies Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy have yet to publicly comment on the news.