LIV Golf is having itself a week. After landing Dustin Johnson and Phil Mickelson for its first event at the Centurion Club in London, the first LIV Golf draft was held on Tuesday evening and everyone in the golf world was fixated on the spectacle of it all. Now, the league has confirmed the addition of 2020 U.S. Open champion Bryson DeChambeau with others rumored to follow shortly after that.
"Bryson is an exciting addition to LIV Golf's supercharged style of play," said LIV Golf CEO Greg Norman. "He is passionate about the sport, innovative in his approach and committed to pushing the boundaries in pursuit of excellence."
DeChambeau will join the Saudi Arabian-backed league for its second event at Pumpkin Ridge in Portland, Oregon, from June 30-July 2. Though his name had been rumored for a while, this still comes as a bit of a surprise and provides LIV Golf with a ton of momentum as it heads into its inaugural eight-event season.
"Bryson has always been an innovator," his agent said in a statement. "Having the opportunity to get in on the ground floor of something unique had always been intriguing to him. Professional golf as we know it is changing and it's happening quickly."
After missing time with an injury, DeChambeau made his first PGA Tour appearance in several months last week at the Memorial Tournament, where he missed the cut. His intentions clearly changed over the last seven days.
"I think that's mostly –- a lot of it is private," DeChambeau said last week at Muirfield Village. "There's not really any conversations that need to be made about that, other than the fact that, like, every person out here has their own opinion on it. Me, there's obviously a lot of conversation. For me, I personally don't think that at this point in time I'm in a place in my career where I can risk things like that.
"I'm loyal to my family that I've created around me with sponsors and everything. And as of right now, the golf world is probably going to change in some capacity. I don't know what that is. Not my job to do so. I'm just going to keep playing professional golf and enjoy it wherever it takes me, play with the best players in the world. That's really all I've got, that's what I'll do for the rest of my life, because I want to be one of the best players in the world."
This is another coup for LIV Golf, which has landed more notable names in its infancy than anyone thought it might. It's also a problem for the PGA Tour, whichfor players who jumped ship for the rival league.
LIV Golf might not be done adding players, either. According multiple sources, 2018 Masters champion Patrick Reed is expected to join DeChambeau in the LIV Golf league. Sources also told CBS Sports that more big names are expected to be added in the days ahead, a list potentially including Jason Kokrak, Rickie Fowler and Harold Varner III., the way the major championship organizations handle all of this is probably going to determine how it plays out in the future.
that players in the LIV Golf league would also be allowed to play the 2022 U.S. Open from June 16-19, but it did not take a long-term stance on the league. It seems as if the four major organizations are wanting to withhold OWGR points from the LIV Golf events with the hope that players who jump to the PGA Tour's rival league will eventually cycle out of qualifying for the four majors because they can't earn enough points to qualify.
Regardless, the PGA Tour is in a difficult position. With players ejecting from the Tour and heading for the perception of greener pastures and also resigning from the Tour in bunches, their next moves are extremely limited. There's no end in sight to that, either. The last six months have been curious and intriguing as it relates to the fracturing of professional golf, but the next six are going to shape the future of the sport for a long, long time.