Sports Leagues Going Virtual

Sports leagues are launching new digital events and competitions to connect audiences with their name and brand — even if it means viewers won’t always be watching the sport itself. Leagues are seeking out a newer and younger audience to gain more ground in our ever-more-online daily lives. Above: A rendering of the new TGL golf league with the PGA Tour. (Photo courtesy of TMRW Sports Group)

PGA Tour Suspends Players In Saudi-Backed Event As Golf’s Discord Deepens

Professional golf arrived at a crossroads Thursday as an insurgent, Saudi-backed tour teed off on a tree-lined course outside London and the PGA Tour suspended the 17 players who had defected, turning what would normally be a sleepy weekday on the golf schedule into one of the strangest and most consequential days in the history of a sport suddenly on the precipice of seismic change.

DraftKings Extends Deal With PGA Tour

DraftKings is enhancing its sports sponsorship portfolio as leagues continue to resume operations suspended due to Covid-19. The betting company announced it secured a deal with the PGA Tour that assigns DraftKings as the organization’s “first betting operator.” The agreement is an extension of DraftKings’ “content and marketing relationship” with the PGA Tour established last July. That deal also allows DraftKings to offer fantasy golf content.

No Crowd Noise To Drown Out PGA F-Bomb

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — Even without any fans to cheer, there was quite a reaction to a birdie during the PGA Tour’s return — a very audible “F-bomb” at the start of Golf Channel’s telecast Thursday. The network had been on the air for only a few minutes when the first shot from the […]

CBS Wants Golfers To Help With PGA Broadcasts

In announcing the broadcast and productions plans for the return to golf, CBS Sports Chairman Sean McManus said the network would have what solo announcer Jim Nantz dubbed a “confession cam.” Players would walk into a tent during the round and talk briefly into a remote camera. McManus also said the network has been working more aggressively to have players wear microphones, and that CBS already has received commitments from some players.

Sources: PGA Tour To Announce June Restart

PGA Tour officials are expected to announce this week their intention to resume the tour season, halted due to the COVID-19 pandemic, on June 11-14 at the Charles Schwab Challenge, multiple sources have told Golf Digest. It’s also expected that fans will not be allowed to attend that first tournament at Colonial Country Club in Fort Worth, Texas.

PGA Tour Cancels All Events Through May 10

The PGA Tour has canceled all of its events through May 10 amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the Tour announced Tuesday. Last Thursday, it canceled all events up through the Masters Tournament in early April. The Masters was then postponed Friday morning. No date has been announced for the 2020 Masters at Augusta National.

PGA Makes $6.3 Billion Rights Deals

The PGA Tour, the organizer of the main professional men’s golf tours in the U.S., has struck a new nine-year deal with CBS Sports, NBC Sports and ESPN that significantly raises the costs of bringing golf to U.S. fans while gaining new traction for digital coverage of the sport.

PGA Tour Looks To Score New Media Deal

The Wall Street Journal reports the PGA Tour is seeking a new media-rights deal with a big increase in fees and a dedicated golf channel, and has drawn interest from suitors including AT&T Inc., Fox Corp., Walt Disney Co.’s ESPN and Journal subscribers can read the full story here.

PGA Tour To Try In-Round Interviews

KAPALUA, HAWAII (AP) — The PGA Tour might be taking another step toward connecting players with television viewers. Several years ago, it asked players in contention on the weekend to allow for TV interviews before their rounds, usually as they were arriving or leaving the practice range. Now they are looking for volunteers willing to do interviews […]

Discovery, PGA Tee Up GolfTV Streaming Brand

Discovery’s $2 billion swing at the international golf market is taking shape, with its upcoming streaming service to be branded “GolfTV.” The OTT service will launch around the world at the beginning of 2019 and have live PGA Tour coverage in a raft of territories at launch. More territories will get the live coverage in the next four years as existing rights deals play out.

PGA Tour Launches OTT Ch. Through Xumo

The PGA Tour launched its first ad-supported streaming over-the-top video channel on smart TV devices as part of a partnership with streaming TV company Xumo. The channel, which went live on Xumo over the weekend, will include live coverage of matches, as well as highlights, recaps, interviews and tournament previews.

PGA Tour Could Drop Broadcast For Own Ch.

The PGA Tour can opt out of its media deals with CBS and NBC in 2018, and tour executives already have reached out to several media companies to gauge their interest in bidding for a package of rights or, potentially, helping the tour launch its own channel.

CBS, NBC Extend PGA Deals Through 2021

With the current contract running through 2012, the new nine-year agreements with CBS and NBC will extend from 2013 through the 2021 season, coinciding with the remaining years of the PGA Tour’s exclusive 15-year cable television agreement with Golf Channel that began in 2007.