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Jon Rahm to leave PGA Tour for $550 million: How much do other LIV golfers make?

According to the Wall Street Journal, Rahmbo has officially decided to jump ship and sign with LIV golf. Let’s take a look at what the others made for leaving the PGA

Joseph McMahon
Joseph McMahon
According to the Wall Street Journal, Rahmbo has officially decided to jump ship and sign with LIV golf. Let’s take a look at what the others made for leaving the PGA

It’s a sad day for golf and specifically for the PGA Tour, who are losing one of their top players to the Saudi-backed golf tour. Despite saying on different occasions that he didn’t play for money and that he wanted to compete against the best, the Spanish golfer has finally given in to the money. The reported $550 million will put him at the top of the highest paid athletes in the world, not only the largest contract for a professional golfer. Let’s take a look at what the other LIV golfers make and how some of the PGA players do for themselves.

LIV Golf’s biggest contracts and earners

Although it’s not public information, a lot of golf reporters have investigated how much the Saudi-backed league paid players to leave the PGA Tour. We can look at those initial signing payments, which seemed like a lot at the time, but are a fraction of what Rahm got. We’ll also see how much players and teams get for winning tournaments and how that compares to their PGA counterparts

LIV Golf's biggest initial contracts for leaving the PGA Tour

  1. Jon Rahm: reportedly signing next week for $500 million
  2. Phil MIckelson supposedly signed for $200 million.
  3. Dustin Johnson is reported to have been paid $150 million to jump ship.
  4. Bryson Dechambeu got is supposed to have received $100 million to leave the PGA.
  5. Brooks Koepka also got an estimated $100 million for the move to LIV.

Those are the top players and payments, not bad, eh? But, not $500 million either.

LIV Golf’s biggest on-course earners in 2023

Not only did they all get big payouts to leave the PGA, they also get a nice chunk of change for winning tournaments. Here’s a look at the top-10 2023 LIV individual earners:

LIV Golf's top earners in 2023

  • Talor Gooch: $17.3 million
  • Cameron Smith: $14
  • Brooks Koepka: $14.5
  • Bryson DeChambeau: $13.3 million
  • Harold Varner III: $9.1 million
  • Dustin Johnson: $8.7 million
  • Branden Grace: $8.4 million
  • Anirban Lahiri: $8.4 million
  • Charles Howeel III: $8.1 million
  • Mito Pereira: $7.9 million

PGA Tour top-10 money earners in 2023

2023 PGA Tour top money winners

  1. Viktor Hovland: $32 million. On the PGA website he is listed in 4th place with $14 million, but that doesn’t count the $18 million he received for the FedEx Cup.
  2. Scottie Scheffler: $21 million
  3. Jon Rahm $16.5 million
  4. Rory McIlroy $13.9 million
  5. Max Homa $10.8 million
  6. Wyndham Clark: $10.8 million
  7. Patrick Cantlay: $10.4 million
  8. Brian Harman: $9.1 million
  9. Keegan Bradley $9 million
  10. Xander Schauffele: $8.5 million

We will have to see how things develop between now and the end of the year as far as the PGA - LIV merger or agreement unfolds. As of now both tours will compete separately. LIV has far fewer tournaments, but has very large payouts, plus money for team wins that we will cover in another article in 2024. The PGA is trying to find money from sponsors and other sources to get close to the $4 million payouts that the Saudi-backed league gives its tournament winners.