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Why did the judge rule against the LIV golfers’ attempt to play in the FedExCup playoffs?

Gooch, Swafford and Jones will not be eligible to play at the FedExCup playoffs, despite filing a temporary lawsuit. Here’s why

Gooch, Swafford and Jones will not be eligible to play at the FedExCup playoffs, despite filing a temporary lawsuit. Here’s why
Charles Laberge/LIV GolfGetty

As the war continues between the PGA Tour and LIV Golf, one battle has been settled.

On Tuesday, Judge Beth Labson Freeman denied a temporary restraining order filed by former PGA players Talor Gooch, Hudson Swafford, and Matt Jones against the Tour, therefore denying them participation in the FedEx Cup Playoffs this year.

Freeman’s justification was basically that LIV players can’t have the cake and eat it too, ‘LIV contracts are based upon players’ calculation of what they were leaving behind.’

This comes as the first blow against the antitrust lawsuit 11 LIV Golf players filed against the PGA Tour last week. These players include Phil Mickelson, Bryson DeChambeau, Abraham Ancer, Jason Kokrak, Carlos Ortis, Pat Perez, Ian Poulter, and Peter Uihlein, in addition to the trio mentioned above.

Why did only Gooch, Swafford, and Jones attempt to play at FedEx playoffs?

Gooch, Swafford, and Jones were the ones who filed for a temporary restraining order as they would have been eligible to compete in the FedEx Cup Playoffs by points. However, the PGA Tour suspended all LIV Golf members indefinitely, which meant that they, too, were ineligible to participate. Some of the other players on LIV Golf, like Mickelson, have already resigned their PGA Tour membership.

Cam Smith is still eligible to play at FedEx playoffs

In short, every player at LIV Golf, except for the latest addition to their list, Cameron Smith, is suspended from the PGA Tour indefinitely.

Because the Aussie will only join LIV Golf after the PGA Tour’s FedEx Cup playoffs, he is eligible to compete at the tournament that begins on Thursday.

Related: Is Cam Smith joining LIV Golf changing PGA Tour sanctions?

PGA Tour players frustrated by LIV Golf players

World No.1, Scottie Scheffler, has shared his frustration on LIV players ‘breaking the rules’ by making the move over to the Saudi-backed league, and then ‘suing’ their former league and its players.

Justin Thomas is another player who had shared unsettling words towards those suing, rightfully so.

They’re suing me. They’re suing Rory (McIlroy). They’re suing Tiger (Woods),” Thomas said in June. “They’re suing every single one of us that they’ve looked in the face, looked in the eyes and played rounds of golf with ... To me, that’s where a little bit of the betrayal and upsetting and sad feelings come from. Again, they are clearly doing what they feel is best for them. So they’re going to continue to go down that route in terms of lawsuits and whatnot.”


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