Experienced Pro Golfer Raises Concerns About PGA Tour After Joining LIV Golf Event – Is He Out of Touch?

Chris Stroud expressed his frustration with the PGA Tour this week after the veteran player entered the field for the upcoming LIV Golf Promotions event in Abu Dhabi, Dec. 8-10, which will offer three players access to the emerging circuit in 2024.

“I’ve been frustrated with what the Tour has done for years, since I was on the (Player Advisory Council). The Tour doesn’t care about you if you’re not in the top 30 and I learned quickly that I needed to take care of myself,” Stroud told Golf Channel on Thursday. “The Tour has built this bad culture. I love (commissioner Jay Monahan), but the Tour has never tried to give back to the players, we’ve never had a voice. So, Jay has had a free hand to do whatever he wants.”

“I believe (Monahan) and a lot of people at the Tour genuinely care about us,” Stroud continued, contradicting himself, “but the system has never been set up to help the players. The Tour has taken all this extra money and not spread it out properly. I’ve talked to so many players about this and the answer is always, we need to be unionized.”

“Never been set up to help the players?”

Never tried to give back to the players?”

Stroud played the 2022-23 PGA Tour season on a major medical extension, missing 14 cuts, making just eight, and still took home $449,238 in prize money. He’s finished inside the top 100 in FedEx Cup standings just four times over 402 starts and 15 seasons, missing 44 percent of his cuts (175).

In the process, he has earned $13,360,657.

Even before an ailing back hampered his last few seasons, Stroud has been, by the numbers, an average PGA Tour player at best and was still given a chance to compete for millions of dollars year in and year out against the game’s best. Some expenses must be paid, but to make that kind of money for those kinds of performances, and then to criticize the Tour is a bold move.

Stroud is also unhappy with the Tour’s 2024 schedule and signature-event format that will reward the top 50 from 2023’s FedEx Cup standings. It’s worth noting Stroud’s lone win on Tour came at the 2017 Barracuda Championship, an opposite-field event for players who didn’t qualify for that week’s World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational. And he still doesn’t think the Tour helps players.

Maybe Stroud is onto something and the Tour has mishandled its high-profile events and the challenge posed by LIV Golf and Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund. Perhaps Nate Lashley was also right for recently calling out the Player Impact Program payments.

Or maybe they can find a middle ground and acknowledge that being a professional golfer is an earned privilege, not a right, and if they want to reap the rewards the game provides, they just need to play better.

Story originally appeared on GolfWeek


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