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#pounditThursday, February 2, 2023

Golf

Charles Barkley hints at what it would take for him to accept LIV offer

Charles Barkley holds a microphone

November 23, 2018; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Turner Sports sportscaster Charles Barkley before The Match: Tiger vs Phil golf match at Shadow Creek Golf Course. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Charles Barkley has been very openly entertaining the possibility of joining LIV Golf as an analyst. The Hall of Famer has also made it clear that it will take a lot of money to convince him to make a major career change, and we may now have a better idea of how much.

Barkley is playing in the LIV pro-am on Thursday at Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, N.J. He told “The Dan Patrick Show” on Monday that he has set a deadline for LIV to make him an offer by the time he leaves that event.

“I’m not gonna keep TNT in limbo. To be honest with you, I don’t think it’s fair to them,” Barkley said. “(The LIV) has gotten plenty of play out of me coming to play up there Thursday, so I’m not just gonna be a show pony. Don’t be wasting my time. I’m not gonna waste y’all’s time. When I leave New Jersey Thursday night, if I don’t have an offer in hand, it’s over.”

Patrick then asked Barkley what it would take for him to sign a contract with LIV. Barkley admitted that his interest in LIV is financially driven. While he did not want to get into specifics of how much he currently makes, Patrick threw out an estimate of $20 million per year between Barkley’s TNT salary and endorsements. Barkley hinted that the figure was close. The former NBA star was then asked if he would sign with LIV if they tripled his current salary.

“If they offer me something crazy, I’m gonna take it,” Barkley said. “Considering how much money I make now, it would take a really huge number for me to give up my life right now. I’m not gonna give up my life. … If they triple it, the next time I’m on your show the first question better be, ‘Charles, where we celebrating at tonight?'”

Barkley reportedly makes around $10 million a year with TNT. The Saudi-backed LIV league has seemingly endless financial resources, so it would not be a surprise if they offer Barkley a lot more than that. Then, the big question would be whether Barkley has to give up his current job or could do both. There have been indications that he will have to leave TNT if he signs with LIV.

LPGA commissioner open to conversation with LIV Golf

Greg Norman looking ahead

June 10, 2022; St. Albans, UK; LIV golf chief executive Greg Norman looks on during the second round of the inaugural LIV golf invitational golf tournament at the Centurion Club. Mandatory Credit: Paul Childs-Action Images/Reuters via USA TODAY Sports

The LIV Golf league has already poached numerous players from the PGA Tour, and the LPGA Tour could be next on their list.

LIV CEO Greg Norman told the Palm Beach Post last week that he is confident that a women’s LIV Golf league is in the cards for the future.

LPGA commissioner Mollie Marcoux Samaan told Cathy Harris of the London Times in an article published Thursday that she would be open to a conversation with Norman if joining the league would promote and grow women’s golf.

“It’s my responsibility to evaluate every opportunity,” Marcoux Samaan said. “I would engage in a conversation if it would achieve our aim of promoting women’s golf, but there needs to be input from players and sponsors. There’s a lot of factors to consider before we do business with LIV Golf.”

There is already a Saudi presence in women’s professional golf with the Ladies European Tour. The Saudis fund six events with abnormally large purses, including the Aramco Team Series. Some of the game’s best players are even wearing Saudi logos on their hats and shirts at this week’s Amundi Evian Championship, including Anna Nordqvist, Carlota Ciganda, Bronte Law and Alison Lee.

LIV has had little issue luring in some of the best male golfers in the world with massive amounts of money, including Dustin Johnson and Brooks Koepka. Last week’s British Open champion may be the next player to join.

With the amount of money LIV has to throw at players, combined with smaller purses for players in the LPGA, the Saudi-backed league could have an easier time coaxing players away from the LPGA.

H/T USA Today

Caddie reveals when Tiger Woods could make next appearance

Tiger Woods in a hat

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Tiger Woods is likely going to take an extended period of time off from competitive golf following his disappointing showing at the 150th British Open, but his caddie may have an idea of when Woods will return to the course.

Joe LaCava, Woods’ caddie for over a decade, appeared on “The Dan Patrick Show” Thursday. LaCava said that he was hopeful that Woods could participate in the Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas in December, or at the PNC Championship with his son Charlie Woods in Orlando, Fla. that same month.

“I’m hoping that he will play maybe in December at the Hero and the father-son, and then maybe the Genesis [Invitational],” LaCava said via Golfweek’s Adam Schupak. “I’m hoping three, maybe four tournaments before The Masters.”

Woods, who was involved in a serious car accident in February 2021 and nearly had his leg amputated, has said that he will never get back to full strength.

While the 46-year-old was able to complete two rounds at St. Andrews last week, Woods had an emotional finish due to the possibility that he will never play in another Open Championship at the famous course (see video here).

Woods’ physical limitations were evident during the PGA Championship in May. He did not participate in last month’s US Open either.

Report: Charles Barkley expected to receive job offer from LIV Golf

Charles Barkley on the sideline

May 20, 2015; Atlanta, GA, USA; Former NBA player and current TNT television personality Charles Barkley prior to game one of the Eastern Conference Finals of the NBA Playoffs between the Atlanta Hawks and the Cleveland Cavaliers at Philips Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

LIV Golf has lured away some of the biggest stars on the PGA Tour, and may have taken a big step towards adding Charles Barkley to the fold.

Barkley revealed on “The Next Round” last week that he was going to meet with the Saudi-backed league about a possible role.

The New York Post’s Andrew Marchand published a story Thursday after speaking with Barkley. According to Marchand, Barkley said he would be playing in next week’s LIV pro-am at Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, N.J.

Marchand reports that Barkley and LIV CEO Greg Norman had dinner in Atlanta on Wednesday to discuss a broadcasting role. Norman is reportedly preparing to make an offer to Barkley.

If Barkley were to join LIV, it could put his status with TNT’s “Inside the NBA” in jeopardy. Dan Patrick revealed during Tuesday’s “The Dan Patrick Show” that Barkley is aware that he may have to leave “Inside the NBA” if he accepts an offer from Norman.

Adding Barkley would be the latest victory for LIV in their effort to be seen as a legitimate alternative to the PGA Tour. After adding former major champions such as Dustin Johnson, Phil Mickelson and Brooks Koepka, the league poached a well-known golf analyst from NBC earlier this week.

Barkley’s entertaining broadcast style could be just what LIV needs to draw more interest.

Alex Morgan one-ups Cameron Smith with trophy celebration of her own

Alex Morgan in uniform

May 22, 2022; Cary, North Carolina, USA; San Diego Wave FC forward Alex Morgan (13) warms up before the game against the North Carolina Courage at WakeMed Soccer Park. Mandatory Credit: Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports

While Cameron Smith might have said “hold my beer” this past weekend, Alex Morgan is saying “hold my margarita.”

The USWNT star Morgan played the role of hero against Canada during the CONCACAF W Championship on Monday. With the score tied at 0-0 in the 78th minute, Morgan delivered the decisive goal on a penalty kick to lift the United States to a 1-0 victory.

Morgan celebrated the victory, which also clinched the United States a berth in the 2024 Olympics, in style. She was inspired by Smith, who just won The Open Championship over the weekend. After his victory, Smith said that he was going to celebrate by seeing how many beers fit into the Claret Jug, the trophy presented to the winner.

Not to be outdone, Morgan decided to fill up the CONCACAF trophy she had just won with margaritas. She was able to fit roughly 20 margaritas into the trophy and tweeted out a picture of her spoils.

While a 20-margarita celebration is quite a feat, this was Morgan’s third career CONCACAF Championship win. The celebration probably felt a little sweeter for Smith, who just won his very first major title. Oh, and Smith also did actually find out exactly how many beers the Claret Jug holds.

Charles Barkley could give up ‘Inside the NBA’ for new opportunity?

Charles Barkley on the sideline

May 20, 2015; Atlanta, GA, USA; Former NBA player and current TNT television personality Charles Barkley prior to game one of the Eastern Conference Finals of the NBA Playoffs between the Atlanta Hawks and the Cleveland Cavaliers at Philips Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Charles Barkley is planning to meet with LIV Golf to discuss a possible role for him with the new Saudi-backed league. Some have wondered how that might impact his job with TNT’s “Inside the NBA,” and one person who knows Barkley well says the Hall of Famer may be considering a total career change.

Barkley confirmed last week that he is going to sit down with Greg Norman to see what LIV may have to offer. Dan Patrick discussed the news on his show Tuesday. Patrick implied that he spoke with Barkley about the possibility of Sir Charles taking a job with LIV.

“He might have to leave TNT. That’s why this is a huge deal,” Patrick said. “Charles knows that he may have to leave TNT to do this. What I was told this morning is Charles knows he may have to leave TNT. That would be bad for everybody.”

Patrick added that the goal for LIV is likely to see if they can secure a TV deal. You can hear more of his comments below:

While many people have criticized golfers for jumping from the PGA Tour to LIV Golf, Barkley openly supported those athletes for following the money. He had a hilariously savage quote about it last month.

The idea of Barkley becoming a full-time golf analyst might seem impossible, but LIV has seemingly endless financial resources. The new league isn’t just poaching superstar golfers. They also secured a deal with one of golf’s biggest media personalities. If they somehow lure Barkley away from TNT, that would rock the media landscape of two sports.

Famous analyst leaving PGA Tour events to cover LIV Golf

LIV Golf logo

LIV Golf has already poached some of the best players in the world from the PGA Tour, and the Saudi-backed league is now going after members of the media, too.

Longtime golf analyst David Feherty has parted ways with NBC and is expected to join LIV broadcasts as an analyst, Andrew Marchand of the New York Post reports.

Feherty was part of the NBC broadcast at The Open Championship over the weekend. He has also worked for the Golf Channel for the past several years. NBC declined to comment on the report that Feherty is leaving for LIV.

Feherty, 63, is known for his quirky antics and funny one-liners. He worked at CBS for nearly two years before signing a contract with NBC/Golf Channel back in 2015. He had a great way of announcing the new deal at the time.

You can understand why LIV Golf would want an analyst like Feherty. The new league has seemingly endless financial resources and has gone after every top golfer in the world. They may even be close to adding another big name.

Cameron Smith reveals answer to big Claret Jug question

Cameron Smith talks to his fans

Cameron Smith has found the answer to the big question he posed after he won The Open Championship on Sunday.

After he rode an incredible putting performance to a victory at St. Andrews, Smith said in an interview with BBC that he planned to find out how many beers will fit inside the Claret Jug. He provided the answer on Monday.

Smith probably celebrated with more than two beers, but we now know how many he was able to drink from the Open Championship trophy in one sitting.

Many are wondering if Smith will be the next PGA Tour superstar to jump to LIV Golf now that he has continued with his breakthrough season. The 28-year-old reportedly has a massive offer on the table if he wants to go that route.

Report: Cameron Smith has massive offer on the table from LIV

Cam Smith talks

Cameron Smith further cemented himself as one of the best young players on the PGA Tour with his win at The Open Championship on Sunday, but speculation is growing that he may not be playing on the PGA Tour for much longer.

Smith reportedly has a massive offer on the table from the LIV Golf Series. Colt Knost, a former PGA golfer who now hosts a SiriusXM Radio show and podcast, said he heard Smith has been offered $90 million.

The guaranteed money has been the biggest — if not only — reason many top golfers have accepted their PGA Tour bans to sign with LIV. Dustin Johnson, Bryson DeChambeau and Brooks Koepka were all reportedly paid well over $100 million to join the Saudi-backed league. Phil Mickelson is said to have gotten somewhere in the neighborhood of $200 million.

Several PGA superstars, like Rory McIlroy and Justin Thomas, have spoken out against LIV and said they are fully committed to the PGA Tour. Smith was given an opportunity to say the same on Sunday. Instead, he got angry with a reporter for asking him about LIV Golf. Koepka had almost the exact same reaction at the US Open a week before he signed with LIV.

It would not be a shock if Smith is next.

Report: Former Open champion set to join LIV Golf

Henrik Stenson looking ahead.

May 20, 2022; Tulsa, OK, USA; Henrik Stenson looks on from the ninth tee during the second round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at Southern Hills Country Club. Mandatory Credit: Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports

The LIV Golf league is about to land its latest big-time golfer and throw a wrench into plans for the 2023 Ryder Cup at Marco Simone Golf and Country Club in Rome, Italy.

According to Swedish newspaper Expressen in an article published on Sunday, Henrik Stenson is on the cusp of joining the Saudi-backed league.

Stenson, the European captain for the 2023 Ryder Cup, would likely be stripped of his captaincy once he joins LIV.

The 2016 Open champion was named the European captain in March, and would join an extensive list of European players who have joined LIV, including Sergio Garcia, Lee Westwood and Paul Casey.

Stenson shot 1-over par during the first two rounds of The Open Championship last week and missed the cut by one stroke. Overall, it was a tough week for those linked to LIV, including CEO Greg Norman, who was disinvited from Monday’s Celebration of Champions event and the subsequent Champions’ Dinner at St. Andrews.

In June, American Ryder Cup captain Zach Johnson issued a staunch warning for LIV golfers regarding their potential Ryder Cup status.

Cameron Smith could soon follow Stenson based on some potentially concerning comments that he made after winning the 150th Open championship on Sunday.

H/T New York Post