Scottie Scheffler comes down hard on potential PGA Tour return for LIV Golf pros

Scottie Scheffler has echoed the sentiments held by Justin Thomas and Rickie Fowler that LIV players shouldn't get an easy return to the PGA Tour. 

Johnny Percival's picture
Thu, 8 Feb 2024
Scottie Scheffler comes down hard on potential PGA Tour return for LIV Golf pros

World No.1 Scottie Scheffler has weighed in on one of the hottest topics in golf, giving his two cents about a potential PGA Tour return for LIV Golf players.

With the WM Phoenix Open in focus, Scheffler, echoing Justin Thomas and Rickie Fowler, suggests that a smooth path back to the PGA Tour for LIV players wouldn't be a popular decision.

Rory McIlroy, however, has reversed his stance, advocating for no penalties for breakaway league players, after admitting: "It's hard to punish people."

Related: Justin Thomas doubles down on Rickie Fowler claim

Neither Thomas nor Fowler has shied away from voicing their concerns over a potential return for LIV players, with Thomas going so far as to say, "I'm definitely not in the agreement that they should just be able to come back that easily."

Marching to the beat of the same drum, Fowler also seemed reluctant for LIV golfers to be given an easy ride back to the PGA Tour, claiming: 

"I mean, they made decisions and there's -- there has to be something for it."

The suggestion that LIV pros may find their way back onto the PGA Tour comes following ongoing negotiations between the Saudi Public Investment Fund, which financially backs LIV, and the PGA Tour for a potential merger. 

While the initial deadline for the two organisations to strike a deal has passed, a new date has been set for the merger to be agreed upon in April. 

With the future uncertain, Scheffler took the time to speak to reporters ahead of the opening round of the WM Phoenix Open to voice his opinion on the matter, claiming:

"You had some guys that left our Tour and then sued our Tour, that wasn’t really in great taste.
"Then you had some other guys that just left and they wanted to do something different. Everybody made their own decision, and I have no bad blood toward the guys that left.
"But a path towards coming back, I think it wouldn't be a very popular decision, I think, if they just came back like nothing ever happened."

While a potential unification of LIV and the PGA Tour is still very much hypothetical, if the two Tours were to combine, Scheffler believes there should be a pathway back for players, but it should come with some sort of caveat.

He added: 

"We remained loyal to a Tour, a Tour that was loyal to us. I built my entire career here on the PGA Tour and I wasn't willing to leave it. I dreamt of playing on this Tour.
"Some of the guys that left, maybe that wasn't for them. But I think if they want a pathway back, that there should be one, but it definitely shouldn't just be coming back in the first week they want to come back and play.
"There should be some sort of caveat to them getting back on our Tour."

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