LOS ANGELES: The Saudi-backed LIV Golf Series has accelerated growth plans for 2023 with 14 events rather than 10 and firmer teams with permanent captains, Golf Digest reported Friday (Jul 1).
The controversial upstart group fighting for talent with the US PGA Tour and DP World Tour plans a name change to the LIV Golf League next year, according to the report, which cites an unnamed LIV Golf official.
LIV Golf teed off its first US event Thursday at Pumpkin Ridge near Portland, Oregon, after staging its debut in England in early June.
In addition to staging four more events than first envisioned, the Saudi-backed series will have 48 players contracted for all 14 events in 2023. Team captains will be able to recruit talent and make trades instead of the teams featuring a rotating cast as it has this season.
The idea would be for the 12 teams to each develop an identity with an eye toward a franchise model and selling of teams.
The quick expansion of 2023 plans is a product of signing several top US PGA players ahead of this week's event, including Americans Bryson DeChambeau, Patrick Reed, Brooks Koepka and Matthew Wolff and Mexico's Abraham Ancer.
LIV Golf has settled on 10 venues for 2023, according to the report, and hopes to add more international venues while avoiding areas with US PGA Tour events.
The PGA Tour issued suspensions to 17 members and former members for playing at the LIV Golf event in England and handed down seven more for those who played the first round at Pumpkin Ridge, including Reed, Wolff, Koepka, DeChambeau, Ancer, Pat Perez and first-round leader Carlos Ortiz.