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CW insulated from PGA Tour merger with LIV Golf for now

No change coming to the LIV Golf schedule on the CW Network this year, a spokesperson says.

No change coming to the LIV Golf schedule on the CW Network this year, a spokesperson says.

The CW Network is insulated from the immediate effects of a blockbuster merger between the PGA Tour and Saudi-backed upstart LIV Golf.

On Tuesday, a spokesperson for the CW Network said there will be no change to the LIV Golf schedule on the broadcaster through the rest of the year, and that the CW Network will offer seven more tournaments to viewers.

“This is an exciting day to unify and grow the game of golf,” the spokesperson for the CW Network said. “There is no change to the LIV Golf event schedule for 2023 on The CW. We look forward to broadcasting seven more exciting tournaments this year featuring the world’s best golfers.”

The merger between the PGA Tour and LIV Golf came as a surprise this week, as both professional golf organizations have been locked in a fiercely competitive battle for talent and broadcast rights since LIV Golf spun up last year.

Nexstar Media Group, the majority owner of the CW Network, snagged domestic telecast rights to LIV Golf and placed it on the network, upsetting some CW Network affiliates owned by CBS parent company, Paramount Global. CBS has the domestic telecast rights to PGA Golf, and Paramount-owned CW Network stations have chosen not to air LIV Golf events throughout the year.

Nexstar’s big bet on LIV Golf could ultimately work to its advantage once the PGA Tour merger is finalized, though it remains to be seen what the combined business has in store over the long term.

The few LIV Golf events aired on the network this year have generated some buzz, but ultimately lower ratings compared to PGA Tour broadcasts on CBS.

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About the Author:

Matthew Keys

Matthew Keys is the publisher of The Desk and reports on the business and policy matters involving the broadcast television, streaming video and radio industries. He previously worked for Thomson Reuters, Disney-ABC, Tribune Broadcasting and McNaughton Newspapers. Matthew is based in Northern California, has won numerous awards in the field of journalism, and is a member of IRE (Investigative Reporters and Editors).