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Over the weekend, LIV Golf had an epic golf tournament. Two of the best golfers on the tour — Dustin Johnson and Cam Smith — along with Branden Grace faced off in a three-man playoff to determine the winner. Except, no one got to see it on TV. LIV’s broadcast partner, the CW, cut away from the ending to show re-runs of syndicated shows and, on some stations, just commercials.
LIV golf announcer Arlo White directed fans to the CW app or website to complete the coverage.
“Now for some of the CW affiliates across the United States who have to leave us now, please switch to the CW app and CWtv.com to continue watching this thrilling finish in Tulsa,” White told viewers.
Here’s one station cutting to an episode of The Goldbergs.
Another one going to an infomercial.
Reaction on Twitter was a mix between angry fans and people simply bemused by the entire ordeal.
Dustin Johnson won the playoff, by the way. It serves as a nice tune-up for both him and Smith who are in the field for this weekend’s PGA Championship.
LIV Golf’s CW mishap is not uncommon for golf broadcasting, even on the PGA Tour
It’s easy to crush LIV here for having a TV partner cut away from their coverage, especially at a crucial time.
However, as an ardent PGA Tour supporter, I can tell you one of the biggest frustrations is often the TV coverage. There are plenty of times when there’s no golf on at all. Every Sunday, Golf Channel airs the first couple hours of coverage before switching to CBS.
Instead of switching immediately, there’s always a dead period of 15-30 minutes of no golf. Typically, when the leaders are on the course.
There was a weather delay in the LIV Tournament, which caused it to run long. Weather delays often affect PGA Tour coverage, too.
The problem is that golf broadcasting is completely antiquated. They have windows that are pre-set for broadcasting. If play falls outside of these windows, then that’s just too bad for viewers.
Though I can’t say the PGA has ever cut away with the tournament on the line, it underscores a larger issue within golf.
Hopefully, these things lead to much needed change. A change to benefit golf fans.
You know, the people who make these events what they are.
Follow Dan Zaksheske on Twitter: @RealDanZak