Tiger Woods talks PGA Tour, PIF negotiations ahead of 2024 PGA Championship: ‘It

Tiger Woods is being seen on the golf course perhaps six times at year at this stage in his career, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t pulling the strings of the professional game behind the scenes. Ahead of the 2024 PGA Championship at Valhalla — the site of his fifth major title in 2000 — Woods provided an update on the ongoing negotiations between the PGA Tour and Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund.

“I think we’re working on negotiations with PIF,” Woods said. “It’s ongoing. It’s fluid. It changes day to day. Has there been progress? Yes. But it’s an ongoing negotiation, so a lot of work ahead for all of us with this process. And so, we’re making steps, and it may not be giant steps, but we’re making steps.”

Woods joined the PGA Tour policy board in August 2023 as part of a transparency measure following blowback from the June 6, 2023, announcement in which the PGA Tour agreed to operate commercially under the same umbrella as LIV Golf’s financial backers. That has yet to come to pass.

Woods’ role on the board has since evolved as he also now sits on the PGA Tour Enterprises board following the Strategic Sports Group’s $3 billion investment into the entity this past January.

The 15-time major champion’s imprint doesn’t stop there as Woods is also a member of the recently announced transaction subcommittee, which is tasked with PIF negotiations. Tiger is joined on this committee by Joe Gorder, Joe Ogilvie, John Henry, Jay Monahan, Adam Scott and Rory McIlroy, who was blocked out of a potential return to the PGA Tour policy board by a small subsection of members that reportedly included Woods (given their different views on what the future of the professional game should look like).

“It’s good to see it differently, but collectively as a whole, we want to see whatever’s best for all the players, the fans, and the state of golf,” Woods said. “How we get there, that’s to be determined, but the fact that we’re in this together and in this fight together to make golf better is what it’s all about.”

Someone who is no longer in this fight together with Woods and McIlroy is the man who was deemed the original architect of the deal between the PGA Tour and PIF, Jimmy Dunne. The Wall Street deal maker resigned from his post on the PGA Tour policy board this Monday claiming his position was “utterly superfluous” given “no meaningful progress has been made towards a transaction with the PIF.”

“Jimmy and the amount of work and dedication that he put into the board and to the PGA Tour, it’s been incredible,” Woods said. “It was a bit surprising that he resigned yesterday and just how it all came about, but no, his role and his help, then what he’s been able to do for the PGA Tour has been great.”

All of this comes as Tiger and his peers prepare for the second major championship of the season. Questions centering around the future of the game continue to swirl as this week’s competition at Valhalla marks one of just four times this year that players from the PGA Tour, DP World Tour and LIV Golf will all come together and play in the same tournament.

“I think the fans are probably as tired as we are of the talk of not being about the game of golf and about not being about the players,” Woods said. “It’s about what LIV is doing, what we’re doing, players coming back, players leaving. The fans just want to see us play together. How do we get there is to be determined.”

With little progress made in the conversations between the PGA Tour and PIF, this separation appears likely to continue for the foreseeable future. While unwilling to discuss specifics like the rest of those involved in the potential deal, Woods was able to confirm as much.

“We made some progress, yes, for sure,” Woods said. “But there’s a long way to go still.”

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