LAHAINA, HAWAII | From where PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan stood inside the open-air clubhouse at Kapalua’s spellbinding Plantation Course last Saturday morning, the view seemed almost limitless.
And the scenery wasn’t bad either.
As 2019 comes to life and Monahan begins his third year as Tour boss, there is a sense of both renewal and freshness. The schedule has been condensed and reshuffled with the FedEx Cup season set to end one month earlier and before football’s takeover of the sports landscape at Labor Day.
Tiger Woods is healthy, Rory McIlroy has committed himself full time to the PGA Tour and it feels as if the Tour’s furniture has been rearranged.
“I think it’s going to be a phenomenal year coming off a phenomenal year,” Monahan said, talking with a small group of reporters in what has become an annual January roundtable question-and-answer session.
Monahan didn’t drop any unexpected news – he began by announcing the Tour donated $190 million to charity in 2018 – and his focus was clearly on the future. Amid the lingering tingle from Woods’ season-ending victory at the Tour Championship last September, Monahan sees his responsibility as positioning the Tour to be proactive in a changing sports environment.
There are no big headaches at the moment.
Negotiations on new television deals (the current ones expire in 2021) have not begun, the expanding legalization of sports betting in the United States is still in its infancy and it’s a President...
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