When you sign-up through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more >
The PGA Tour did not always like sports betting. In recent years, the league has rejected efforts by gambling operators to sponsor events and demanded integrity fees in legislation.
But the commissioner of the PGA Tour, Jay Monahan, has reversed the Tour’s long-standing pushback and instead, embraced sports betting as a way for the PGA to stay relevant long after Tiger Woods is gone.
Golf is one of the few sports that lends itself to several types of betting. From long-term proposition bets to live shot by shot betting, the opportunities for exciting wagers are endless.
Unlike other sports such as football, baseball, and basketball, the PGA Tour has over one hundred golfers teeing it up each week, allowing for millions of combinations of bets to be made.
With the potential increase in engagement, PGA Tour commissioner Monahan believes now is the time to embrace sports betting in the sport.
“We’ve spent a lot of time over the last two and a half years clearly understanding all of our options and getting ourselves in a position where we can participate,” said Monahan.
“Participate with the right partners, and participate in a way that we think resonates with fans.”
“Without getting in front of it, I think you can expect to hear developments from us in the second half of this year,” he concluded.
If you don’t think that Tiger Woods has propped up golf ratings and excitement for decades, then look at the ratings of this year’s PGA Championship.
With Woods missing the cut and Brooks Koepka dominating the field, ratings for the major delivered its third-lowest overnight number since 1995.
Last year with Woods finishing second in the event, ratings were 36% higher than in 2019.
Over the last four majors, only Tiger Woods’ win at Augusta had a rating share of over 5.0.
Simply put, once Tiger Woods retires, the PGA Tour will have to avoid a lack of interest in their sport and one way to do that is by making sports betting available to the viewer.
The PGA Tour made the first step to invite gambling into their inner circle by removing the ban on gambling sponsorships in January.
“Because of the Supreme Court’s decision last year, and because of the direction that we see legalized, regulated sports betting going in this country,” said Andy Levinson, PGA V.P.
“And just because of the public perception toward gaming, we’ve made the decision to remove a great deal of the prohibitions on gambling sponsorships in our sport.”
The Tour also believes having more eyes on the game, through sports betting operators, will increase the integrity of their tournaments.
“We feel that being partners with the companies that are operating sports betting will actually benefit our sport from an integrity perspective,” Levinson said.
“(Mainly)because we will be ensuring that there is a transparent sharing of information.
“If they see an issue, they’re going to tell us about it; they’re not just going to tell their state regulator, they’re going to have an obligation to tell us,” he concluded.
The next step for the Tour is to continue to research and look for a betting partner that will continue to promote and engage bettors of the sport.
© Rebel Penguin ApS 2024 (a subsidiary of Gaming Innovation Group Inc.)
We support responsible gambling. 21+ Only. Gambling problem? Call 1-800-Gambler.
WSN.com is run by iGaming Cloud Inc (a Gaming Innovation Group Subsidiary) and is registered with the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE) under affiliate vendor ID 89744, with the Indiana Gaming Commission (IGC) under certificate of registration number SWR-000148, approved by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board as a gaming service provider, under certificate registration number 117656-1, possesses a Vendor Minor sports betting license from the Colorado Limited Gaming Control Commission (account number 94414163), granted a vendor registration number VR007603-20-001 by the Michigan Gaming Control Board, an interim Sports Wagering Supplier license, under license number SWS 066, issued by the West Virginia Lottery Commission, a sports betting vendor registration, under registration number #100400, issued by the Director of Gaming Licensing and Investigations of the Virginia Lottery to operate in the State of Virginia, and a Vendor Registration issued by the Sports Wagering Committee of the Tennessee Education Lottery Corporation.
Advertising disclosure: WSN contains links to online retailers on its website. When people click on our affiliate links and make purchases, WSN earns a commission from our partners, including ESPN and various sportsbooks.