Tiger Woods turned down $700-$800 million offer to join Saudi-backed: According to Tour CEO Greg Norman, Tiger Woods turned down an offer of around $700-$800 million to join the Saudi-backed LIV golf chain.
During an interview aired on Fox News on Monday, Tucker Carlson asked former world No. 1 Norman if it was true that Woods was offered $700-$800 million to appear in the LIV golf series.
“That number was there before I became CEO,” Norman replied. “So, that number is out there, yeah. Look, Tiger is a needle mover, isn’t he?
“So, of course, you’re going to see the best of the best. They originally approached Tiger before I became CEO, so, yeah, that number is somewhere in that neighborhood.”
Earlier, Norman told the Washington Post in June that Woods had been offered huge money to participate but turned it down. Norman said Woods’ proposal was “huge to mind; we’re talking about the high nine digits.”
The controversial tour has attracted some of the biggest names in the golf world to leave the established PGA Tour and DP World Tour to participate for big bucks.
Major winners Phil Mickelson, Dustin Johnson, Bryson DeChambeau, Brooks Koepka, Sergio Garcia, Louis Osthuizen, Graeme McDowell, Charl Schwartzell and Martin Kemmer have all joined the breakaway venture, which has offered players huge funding to join.
The LIV Golf Series is backed by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) – a sovereign wealth fund headed by Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman – and has pledged to award $250 million in total prize money.
However, it has drawn criticism from many players, including Rory McIlroy and Woods, for abandoning the traditional set of golf and accepting money from a country with a dismal human rights record.
Ahead of the July Open in St Andrews, Scotland, Woods said he disagreed with the players who walked away.
“I think what he has done is he has patted his back to get to the position,” said the 15-time major winner.
“Some of these players may never get a chance to play in major championships. It’s a possibility. We don’t know for sure yet. It’s up to all the major championship bodies to make that determination. But it’s up to you.” There is a possibility, that some players will never, ever get the chance to play in a major championship, never get the chance to experience it here, walk down the fairway at Augusta National.
“But what are these players doing for guaranteed money, what’s the incentive to practice? What’s the incentive to go out there and earn in the dirt? You’re just being paid a lot of money ahead and playing some events and 54 They are playing the hole. They are playing loud music and all these atmospheres are different.”
Woods said: “I don’t see how this move is positive in the long term for these players, especially if the LIV organization doesn’t get world-ranking points and changes its criteria for entering major championship events.
“It will be sad to see that some of these little kids never got the chance to try and experience what we’ve got to experience these sacred grounds and play in these championships.”
Woods even went so far as to criticize Norman himself for his role in Splinter Tour. “Greg has done some things that I don’t think are in the best interest of our sport, and we are getting back to perhaps the most historic and traditional place in our sport.”
On Sunday, Henrik Stenson won the third event of LIV Golf’s debut season in Bedminster, New Jersey.
Nearly two weeks after being stripped of the Ryder Cup captaincy to join the series, the 46-year-old Swede scored an 11-under par to win $4 million at the Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster.
He accepted the trophy along with former US President Donald Trump, who was present during the three-day competition and who was the owner of the course.