In 2023, in order to compete with LIV Golf, the PGA Tour introduced “designated” events. These select tournaments, such as this week’s Arnold Palmer at Bay Hill, feature $20 million purses and guaranteed star-heavy fields. In 2024, the tour will go one step further with its “elevated” events by reducing the field size (down to 64 or so) and completely eliminating the 36-hole cut.
Patrick Cantlay admitted the changes were a direct response to the upstart league led by Greg Norman.
“I think, in general, if a company or a product doesn’t have competition, the incentive to innovate is low,” said Cantlay. “So now, with competition, everyone wants to look inside to see how they could improve their product and do things better.
“The biggest advantage of it is locking in the stars that play those events into four days.
“So, if you’re a little kid in whatever city that a tournament, one of these tournaments is going on, L.A., for example, and you can only go on Sunday, for sports or that’s when your mom or dad can take you, you know that if Tiger Woods enters the tournament, on Sunday, you can go watch him. Rory, you can go watch him [without worrying they won’t be around on the weekend]. I think that’s really powerful.”
Rory McIlory, though, insinuated that removing cuts is not a response to the LIV Golf League.
“We’ve always had no-cut events on this tour. If you think of like the four WGCs, you’ve got the three playoff events, you’ve got the CJ Cup, the Zozo. So there’s precedent there for no-cut events.
“The only reason no-cut events are a big deal is because LIV has come along. But there is precedent for no-cut events [on the PGA Tour]. There’s been no-cut events since I’ve been a member of the tour and way beyond that as well.
“So, yeah, is there maybe going to be a few more of them? Maybe. That’s still TBD by the way. That’s not been decided yet. But if we do go down that path there’s precedent there to argue for no-cut events.”
Source: Pro Golf Weekly