Jimmy Dunne, Chairman of PGA-LIV, on the eve of the merger.

The news that rocked the world of golf this week was the merger of the U.S. Professional Golf Association (PGA) Tour-DP World Tour and the LIV Golf Invitational, sponsored by the Saudi Arabian sovereign wealth fund (PIF).

The PGA, DP and LIV announced the merger in a joint statement last night (June 6). The three organizations will come together under a new, jointly owned, for-profit entity, with the PGA serving as the governing body and LIV as the exclusive investor.

The merger itself is big news, but what’s even more surprising is that the PGA and LIV are suddenly allies after being such bitter enemies for so long. This is because the PGA and LIV suddenly ended all confrontations and conflicts when they were engaged in fierce legal battles, with LIV taking away the PGA’s players with huge amounts of ‘oil money’ and the PGA banning the transferred players from competing.

Golf fans and PGA players alike reacted with enthusiasm. They were shocked by the secrecy and surprise, but also angry at the betrayal. No matter how much money they were paid, they remained loyal to the PGA and defended the PGA’s sanctions against LIV. Rory McIlroy, who criticized the LIV players, said he “felt like a scapegoat” and tried to console himself by saying, “I still hate LIV, but (the merger) is a good thing for golf.”

So how did the PGA and LIV, which have been at odds for the past year since LIV’s launch in June, come together?

As the details of the merger began to emerge on Sept. 9 in Golf Channel, Golfweek and other outlets, the man behind the consolidation was Seminole Golf Club President Jimmy Dunne, who sits on the PGA Tour’s Policy Committee.

Dunne is a well-known figure in both Wall Street and golf circles. He is vice chairman and senior managing director of Piper Sandler, 스포츠토토 a prominent Wall Street investment bank, and a member of Augusta National Golf Club. He has played with many top players, including Phil Mickelson, Rory McIlroy, and Jordan Spieth, and has a strong voice on the PGA Tour’s policy committee.

The idea for the PGA-LIV merger was conceived about seven weeks ago. LIV President Yasir Alumayan first met with PGA Tour President Dunne and others in April, and later met again with PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monaghan. The confidential discussions moved very quickly. We agreed that there was nothing to be gained by antagonizing each other. There was also a sense of unity in the world of golf. A framework was drawn up in which Mr. Alumayan would be an investor in the new entity and Commissioner Monaghan would be its president. Chairman Dunne, a close friend of Alumayan’s, played a key role in this process.

Mr. Dunne was personally a direct victim of the 9-11 attacks, which were blamed on Saudi Arabia. The company he worked for was located in the South Tower of the World Trade Center, the very site of the September 11, 2001 attacks. If he had been in the office that day, he would have lost his life. But he was out of town on a business trip, and instead lost more than 60 colleagues and employees. There is no shortage of hostility toward Saudi Arabia.

But Dunn said the merger had “nothing to do” with 9-11. “This agreement is the result of Mr. Alumayan being very responsive,” he said. “The important thing going forward is to see how the players who have been loyal to the PGA Tour will be compensated.”

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