A few of the world’s best golfers could be joining the LIV Golf Invitational Series before the next event. Brooks Koepka is reportedly set to leave the PGA Tour, and there are rumors that another major championship winner could be headed to the Saudi-backed golf league.
After being the first to report that Koepka would be the newest LIV Golf player, the Telegraph’s James Corrigan said to expect another LIV signing Tuesday. Corrigan noted that Collin Morikawa would not be the next high-profile golfer to leave the PGA Tour.
Both Morikawa’s agent and the golfer himself have shot down any rumors that he is signing with LIV Golf. Morikawa is No. 4 in the world golf rankings.
Expecting another LIV signing today, but it will not be Morikawa
— James Corrigan (@jcorrigangolf) June 21, 2022
To state for the record, once again, you all are absolutely wrong. I’ve said it since February at Riviera that I’m here to stay on the @PGATOUR and nothing has changed. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got some cereal to pour in my milk
— Collin Morikawa (@collin_morikawa) June 21, 2022
“To state for the record, once again, you all are absolutely wrong,” Morikawa said on Twitter. “I’ve said it since February at Riviera that I’m here to stay on the PGA Tour and nothing has changed.”
Morikawa would be the best player in the field at the next LIV Golf event if he made the jump.
No. 16 Dustin Johnson is the highest-ranked player signed to the PGA Tour’s new rival. Koepka is expected to join LIV Golf after winning four majors since 2017.
Morikawa tied for fifth place in the U.S. Open, marking his second fifth-place finish at a 2022 major. The 2020 PGA Champion and reigning British Open Champion, Morikawa is the only golfer who has won multiple majors in the last two years.
Spoke with Collin Morikawa's agent, Andrew Kipper:
"The rumors about Collin are categorically false."
He's not going.
— Dan Rapaport (@Daniel_Rapaport) June 21, 2022
“I think these guys have made their decisions,” Morikawa said at last week’s U.S. Open when asked about players leaving the PGA Tour for LIV Golf.
“I mean, it is upsetting. I’ve been out here for three years, and I never would have imagined this is what we would have to deal with three years in as being a professional. All I dreamt about was playing on the PGA Tour, making putts to win tournaments, winning majors, and for me it’s just how do I get back to focusing on that? This has been such a big distraction. It’s enjoyable to talk about it because we all like gossip, right? We all like the drama.
“At the end of the day, that’s what it is. We’re all trying to assume or make assumptions or make guesses about what this or that or who is going or what’s going to happen next. We know just as much as you. We really do.”
Bryson Dechambeau and Patrick Reed are expected to play in the next LIV Golf event, which starts June 30 in Portland, Oregon. Phil Mickelson, Sergio Garcia, Louis Oosthuizen, Kevin Na and Talor Gooch were among the 17 players who were suspended by the PGA Tour after competing in the first LIV event from June 9-11.
It seems inevitable that more top players will sign with LIV Golf. Koepka is leaving the PGA Tour, despite all the backlash that golfers have received in recent weeks for doing so. LIV Golf offers players the chance to make more money while competing at fewer events each year.
The top LIV Golfers have reportedly received nine-figure signing bonuses. Players compete for their share of $25 million against a smaller, less talented field of players in LIV Golf events.
The PGA Tour is looking to make some changes in order to compete with the lucrative offers that LIV Golf can make to players.