LIV Golf has had to grapple with plenty of headaches since it embarked on its quest to take on the PGA Tour, and one of the biggest challenges it faced during its inaugural season was the lack of a television broadcast partner.
The organization (which has accused its rival of meddling to keep networks away from its new competitor) was able to address that issue when it inked a deal with The CW earlier this year to ensure its events will be broadcasted on the channel’s affiliates.
LIV would obviously like people to believe it’s been able to attract a significant number of viewers, although ratings trends would appear to suggest the majority of golf fans aren’t going out of their way to ensure they’ll be able to catch a tournament as it unfolds.
However, many people who were watching The CW in the hopes of catching the three-way playoff that unfolded between Dustin Johnson, Cameron Smith, and Branden Grace at Cedar Ridge Country Club in Tulsa on Sunday ran into a bit of an issue thanks to some affiliates who apparently decided it wasn’t worthy of preempting some previously scheduled programming.
As The Big Lead notes, a number of LIV Golf fans (there are dozens of them!) voiced their displeasure and disbelief after seeing the LIV broadcast get abandoned for (depending on where you were in the country) infomercials, game shows, and syndicated reruns of sitcoms and police procedurals.
Liv golf went off the cw Las Vegas with a few holes to go to show Chicago pd
— Brian Wargo (@BrianBuckWargo) May 14, 2023
CW dropped LIV to show some parade. This is amazing https://t.co/9pFFy0WEtR pic.twitter.com/xGJVMHvELd
— Sam (@Skulledwedge) May 14, 2023
Sounds like the CW pulled away from LIV with 4 holes to go in favor of (depending on your market) Black-ish or Family Feud. I'd say you can't make it up, but you definitely could have made this up!
— Alex Myers (@AlexMyers3) May 14, 2023
Did they really just cut off Liv golf for an infomercial on CW? ..lol
— Balkie 🇺🇸 (@JasonBalcaitis) May 14, 2023
Your kidding right LIV. The CW in NY cuts out to show penn and teller instead of this finish. Complete BS #LIVgolfbroadcast
— Al Granell (@algranell) May 14, 2023
When you consider some markets did stick with the playoff, it doesn’t seem like the decision to cut away could be entirely attributed to contractual obligations.
On the flip side, there’s no way to definitively explain why the stations that did abandon LIV Golf made that decision, although it doesn’t seem like it’s a stretch to assume they viewed previously aired episodes of Chicago P.D. and Penn & Teller: Fool Us as more beneficial to their bottom line.