Sports Outside the Beltway

The Gift that keeps giving- LPGA, IMG file counterclaim in SBS lawsuit

Another financial time bomb for the LPGA thanks to its former Commissioner. From Jon Show-

The LPGA and IMG filed a counterclaim this month in a civil action with Seoul Broadcasting System over the company’s refusal to make a payment in its final year as the tour’s Korean television rights holder.

The counterclaim follows a lawsuit filed last August by SBS, the LPGA’s exclusive Korean rights holder from 1995 to 2009, against the LPGA and IMG after they awarded the Korean rights to J Golf beginning in 2010. IMG brokers the tour’s international television rights.

At the root of the lawsuit is a claim by SBS that it had verbal assurance from the LPGA that it could match any final offer for the rights. In its motion to dismiss, the LPGA and IMG deny there was any such agreement.


According to court papers, SBS says the LPGA asked for $4.5 million under terms of a five-year extension that would have begun in 2010. SBS, which paid $2.25 million a year for the rights, was informed by LPGA Commissioner Carolyn Bivens that its $3 million counteroffer was below what she considered market value.

On Jan. 30, 2009, three days before a scheduled meeting between Bivens and SBS President Sang Chun to discuss an extension, the tour informed SBS that it had reached a tentative agreement with J Golf, according to court papers. SBS countered by offering to pay 5 percent on top of the offer from J Golf.

LPGA officianados know what happened last February. The LPGA announced its new deal with J Golf right when the SBS Open was being played. SBS President Sang Y. Chun was livid and now that LPGA tournament is history.

Would Carolyn Bivens ever make promises to a tournament sponsor and later renege or treat poorly a sponsor? Let me think.


Anchors Aweigh- Carolyn Bivens out, Marsha Evans in as new LPGA Commissioner

Actually the new Commissioner will only take the job on a interim basis. Evans, a retired Navy Rear Admiral, has already made it clear she isn’t interested in the job long term. A search committee has been formed to find a new successor.

If you want a thorough run down on Evans life, read Ryan’s post at Waggleroom.

So the Brand Lady is out. I repeat what I said last week, it’s about time. The LPGA schedule isn’t just in taters, but a long list of tournament sponsors were seriously unhappy with the way they were being treated. Miss Bivens may not have liked it, but without tournament sponsors their wouldn’t be a tour and antagonizing them in foolish ways was beyond assinine. It was destructive to ladies professional golf in the United States.

Some bloggers, Stephanie Wei and Brent Kelley for two, think we’ll see the Bivens era in a more positive light after a few years have passed. I couldn’t disagree more strongly. The LPGA has been seriously damaged and it will take a few years at least to get its house back in order. The long term television contract that Bivens landed as nice as it looks, can’t change the fact that the Golf Channel will still often show LPGA tourneys on tape delay due to its PGA contractual obligations. Nor do I expect the Network to suddenly focus more attention on the LPGA. That’s unless Michelle Wie finally gets a grip on that talent she has and starts a run at #1 player in the world. I still think that can happen.

My own opinion is barring Michelle Wie taking off, the LPGA will still be a niche sport and a very weakened one because of Carolyn Bivens actions during her time as Commissioner.

Hound Dog, The Constructivist, and Jay Busbee are also blogging on today’s news.


Is LPGA Commissioner Carolyn Bivens about to be ousted?

Golf World magazine’s Ron Sirak says it could come as early as next week.

Carolyn Bivens’ tumultuous four-year run as LPGA commissioner will end early next week, multiple sources tell, the tipping point coming when the Board of Directors received a letter from some of the tour’s top players calling for her resignation. Official word is expected after this week’s U.S. Women’s Open at Saucon Valley Country Club.

“The letter was a death sentence,” one source within the LPGA told “No confidence by the players is a dagger in her heart,” said a second source, this one involved in tournament ownership.

Bivens has 18 months left on the three-year contract extension she signed at the beginning of 2008. Her salary, according to LPGA tax filings, is $500,000 a year. According to a source in tournament management, a general agreement with Bivens on financial terms was reached late Wednesday.

The only remaining questions surround when Bivens leaves office and how her departure is framed. “She’s gone. It’s just a question of whether it’s a firing or a resignation,” said one veteran player, a Bivens supporter. “And she doesn’t deserve any of it.”

The LPGA, its Tournament Owners Association, the Board of Directors and the players all deferred comment on the matter until after the Women’s Open. Bivens did not respond to an email request for an interview nor to a message left on her cell phone.

Bivens has had a habit of becoming hard to find when some controversy blows up involving the LPGA Tour. For instance the English policy debacle of last year. The Commissioner was out of communication for a week. Which frankly always amazed me considering Bivens background prior to the LPGA.

Among the players who signed the letter were Paula Creamer, Morgan Pressel, Lorena Ochoa, Cristie Kerr, Se Ri Pak, Suzann Pettersen and Natalie Gulbis. Ms. Bivens does have some supporters, but I doubt the total is very big.

My opinion of Bivens firing or resignation- It’s about time. I’ve been banging the drum loudly(I gave Bivens her own tag for this blog. That tells you frequently she’s been a topic of my posts.) for three years about Commissioner Bivens wrongheaded decision making. She’s angered sponsors, fans, and the media and right now the LPGA may have only ten U.S. based golf events in 2010. What’s the big deal about that? The tour plays all over the world. That’s true, but the foreign events are limited fields. Most LPGA players are going to have somewhere else to play.

The Bivens years has been almost complete for the LPGA Tour. Whoever gets her job is going to have a great deal of work to do to straighten out the mess they inherit from ‘The Brand Lady’.


When you’re hot and other LPGA Tour notes

Eunjung Yi made some LPGA history today at the Corning Classic.

Eunjung Yi of South Korea has made three eagles in her first five holes on the third round of the LPGA Corning Classic.

Yi eagled the par-4 first hole, the par-5 second hole and the par-5 fifth hole. She’s just the fifth player in LPGA history to accomplish the feat and only the 17th to post consecutive eagles.

Yi started Saturday at 4 under and tied for 59th. Her spree left her at 10 under and just four shots behind leader Karine Icher of France, who had yet to tee off.

Some LPGA related comments

1- Going into today’s third round, France’s Karine Icher had a two-shot lead over Hee Won Han. Han, a six-time winner on tour, is trying to win her first tournament since 2006. She won Corning in 2006, but her more recent victory was the 2006 LPGA Thailand.

Han was one of the most consistent LPGA players from 2003-06 when she finished between 4th and 9th every year on the money list. The reasons for her three-year absence from the winner’s circle is directly attributable to her having a baby boy in June 2007. She played less than a dozen events that year, and while she had a solid 2008, Han fell off to 19th on the money list. Herworst finish not counting 2007 since 2002.

2- Talking about motherhood, expectant Mom Mi Hyun ‘Peanut’ Kim opened today’s third round in a tie for 14th. Peanut sometime in the late summer or early fall will join Han as the only other South Korean Mom on tour.

Actually other than Han and Peanut, the only South Korean golfers I know that are married are Birdie Kim and Gloria Park.

3- Seon Hwa Lee is also tied for third and would be an appropriate winner for the last ever Corning Classic. Why would she be appropriate? Lee has won four LPGA events, three of them were never played again after Stone Buddha’s victory.

4- Randall Mell* at Golf Channel writes about how sponsors will lose money this year and future projections weren’t very good either -

That’s partly because the LPGA was asking more in negotiations over a new contract. This marks the last year of a four-year deal with the tournament declining to pick up the option for next year. The tournament’s board was negotiating a new deal through 2013 when it pulled the plug.

The cost of running this year’s Corning Classic will be about $3.7 million, Benjamin said. The tournament projects under a new four-year deal, those costs will average out to about $4.45 million annually, though Benjamin said it’s possible the LPGA would have made concessions to lower those costs.

The negotiations, however, never got that deep.

“The LPGA’s asking price didn’t help, but that wasn’t the reason for this decision,” Benjamin said. “We just can’t generate the revenue to keep this tournament the way it is. The economy’s taken a huge toll.”

Randall says you can’t point a derisive finger at the LPGA over its latest lost tournament but I disagree. The time to squeeze a sponsor isn’t when the economy is poor and your organization is having problems with retention. I think a tournament with a lower purse, is better than no tournament at all. Especially in light of the fact the LPGA has almost a dozen US tournaments right now in the last year of their contract.

Caddy blogger Larry has the following-

The details of the loss of The Corning Classic, if true, are troubling. More than one source states that the beloved Commissioner called for a pecuniary squeeze play and was thrown out at the plate. From what I understand, the Corning folks offered to maintain heir current contribution but noted that lessor sponsors were unable to do so. The event could still be held but at a reduced purse. This was rebuffed by the LPGA which demanded bumping the purse to 2.6 million and also called for the addition of more, and or better, scoreboards.

The LPGA version is that they tried everything possible to save the tournament.

After the SBS fiasco, with both sides offering contradictory stories on its demise, who do we believe? Weren’t we told by the LPGA that SBS couldn’t match the offer from J Golf? If you remember the interview with the CEO of SBS, he said the offer was never made. Does anyone see a pattern here? By the way, it didn’t take long for the PGA to pick them up as a sponsor in a long term deal for their opening event. I guess SBS had plenty of cash to spare after all.

One noted LPGA Hall of Fame member lamented recently, that if the players don’t take back the Tour within the next two years, it’s over. She is not the only one sharing that sentiment as more info comes to light about this week’s event.

Since the Shoprite fiasco, I been warning about the path LPGA Commissioner Carolyn Bivens** has been taken. We’ve seen at least four tournaments go belly up because of how Ms. Bivens treated them in one fashion or another. The Hall of Famer is write, Bivens has to or the LPGA is sunk. I said for the first time almost three years ago.

5- Anything I wrote about who may win Corning this weekend is liable to be far off. Scoring has been extremely low today. Taiwan’s Yani Tseng and Vicki Hurst are ten under par for their rounds today and haven’t reached the clubhouse yet.

*- I’ve met Randall at the two LPGA tournaments I was a credentialed blogger for. He used to be a sports writer for the Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel.

**- Bivens does have some accomplishments as Commissioner, but the negatives are far too overwhelming to not say her time in the job has been a disaster for the tour.


PGA Tour season opener has new sponsor

Seoul Broadcasting System aka SBS will be replacing Mercedes. From AP-

The PGA Tour added its first new title sponsor since the economic meltdown and shored up its season opener in Kapalua by announcing a 10-year deal Thursday with Korea-based SBS International.

Seoul Broadcasting System also extended by seven years its exclusive agreement to show PGA Tour events in Korea.

The deals run through 2019.

The tour has had mixed economic news this year. It is losing title sponsors in Phoenix, Milwaukee and Florida, while agreeing to contract extensions for four other tournaments through 2014.

But this represents its first new sponsor since the economy’s downturn last fall. SBS is the only media company to be a title sponsor on the PGA Tour, which has relied largely on the automobile and financial industry in the last decade.


SBS had been the title sponsor of an LPGA Tournament on Oahu, which ended this year. SBS president Sang Chun said its LPGA deal helped spur interest in golf in Korea, and he expects the same dynamic with its PGA Tour deal.

SBS ended its sponsorship of the LPGA season opener in wake of how they were treated by the tour when they decided to enter into a new Korean television deal.

The contract with J Golf, which has yet to be announced by the tour or the network, but details of which were obtained by Golf World, is a multiyear deal likely worth in excess of $4 million annually, according to sources familiar with the negotiations. That is up significantly from the $2.25 million SBS says it paid to broadcast 30 events in Korea this year. Asked if his company would continue to sponsor the SBS Open when coverage moves to J Golf next year, Sang Y. Chun, president and CEO of SBS International, said: “Absolutely not.”

Chun, who said he was “disappointed, upset really” at losing the contract, said his feelings were “not about the money [but] about the way we were treated.”

The PGA Tour is much more sponsor friendly than the Carolyn Bivens led LPGA Tour. Cases in point include past LPGA sponsors Shoprite, Wendy’s, ADT, and SBS. All of whom were not happy with the their treatment. Now the LPGA’s schedule is falling apart at the same time the world wide economy is in bad shape. Any sensible people at tour headquarters in Daytona Beach, plus the LPGA players would certainly like those sponsors back. The firing of Carolyn Bivens is long over due, but how wrecked will the LPGA be before she gets the axe?

Ryan at Waggle Room is also commenting.


LPGA Sponsor charged with massive fraud by the SEC

Another tournament looks to be in trouble now. From AP-

NEW YORK – Federal regulators on Tuesday charged Texas financier R. Allen Stanford and three of his firms with a “massive” fraud that centered around high-interest-rate certificates of deposit, and raided some of the companies’ offices.

In a complaint filed in federal court in Dallas, the Securities and Exchange Commission alleged Stanford orchestrated a fraudulent investment scheme centered on an $8 billion CD program that promised “improbable and unsubstantiated high interest rates.”

Stanford’s assets, along with those of the three companies, were frozen. Stanford’s firms include Antigua-based Stanford International Bank, broker-dealer Stanford Group Co. and investment adviser Stanford Capital Management, which are both based in Houston.

If you don’t know, Stanford International sponsored the Aventura Florida LPGA event I covered as a member of the media last April. They were supposed to sponsor this year’s LPGA Tour Championship, the end event of the 2009 season. No word yet from the LPGA, but I expect to hear at least hopeful spin from the LPGA. Commissioner Carolyn Bivens sure knows how to pick some winners doesn’t she?

Is it too far a stretch to think the LPGA wish it had a mulligan so far as their past relationship with ADT goes? ADT’s sponsorship of the LPGA’s final event of the year came to an end last year.

Hat tip- Ryan at Waggle room

Update- I neglected to mention(or remember) Stanford also sponsors the PGA Tour stop in Memphis TN.


Shoprite II- SBS no longer a LPGA sponsor

In another supposed money grab, the LPGA has given a long-time sponsor the shaft. From Ron Sirak at Golf World-

That the LPGA came into the 2009 season with only three fewer tournaments than last year was probably a small victory given the state of the global economy. Not expected was that it would lose another event last month—the Ginn Open—before it was to be played in April, a victim of the real-estate collapse that also claimed the Ginn Championship on the Champions Tour. Now, the LPGA is taking a calculated risk for the 2010 schedule by signing a lucrative new deal for the Korean television rights to LPGA events with J Golf, a subsidiary of Joongang Daily News. The new partner means severing a 15-year relationship with the Seoul Broadcasting System, and losing the SBS Open after the season-opening tournament at the Turtle Bay Resort in Hawaii.

While the matter of Korean television rights for LPGA events might seem like a minor issue, it is not. The income from those rights is the tour’s largest single revenue stream.

I prefer to follow the play of the tours than the economics, but I’m well aware of how big a part the television contracts with Japan and South are so far as LPGA revenue sources go. The LPGA has to buy air time in the United States for most of their tournaments and then sell advertising to recoup their costs.

Here’s the stinking part of this whole deal.

The contract with J Golf, which has yet to be announced by the tour or the network, but details of which were obtained by Golf World, is a multiyear deal likely worth in excess of $4 million annually, according to sources familiar with the negotiations. That is up significantly from the $2.25 million SBS says it paid to broadcast 30 events in Korea this year. Asked if his company would continue to sponsor the SBS Open when coverage moves to J Golf next year, Sang Y. Chun, president and CEO of SBS International, said: “Absolutely not.”

Chun, who said he was “disappointed, upset really” at losing the contract, said his feelings were “not about the money [but] about the way we were treated.”

In Asian society, saving face is important. It looks like to me the LPGA has really stomped on these people, otherwise Chun wouldn’t have said the words he did.

So what has that meanace Carolyn Bivens done? Alienate and lose a long-time LPGA sponsor for a slightly better deal with a company with no track record of backing women’s golf. We all know what happened when the tour gave the Shoprite Atlantic City tour stop the finger and replaced it with tournaments sponsored by Ginn Resorts. A little over two years later there are two holes in the schedule after Ginn pulled out of these events and Shoprite is gone too. The deal with J Golf isn’t for another tournament, but the effect is two fold. First the SBS Open is gone in 2010 when the LPGA already has 1/3 of its tournaments up for renewal at the same time an economic downturn is happening. Perhaps more importantly, the latest actions of the LPGA could make current sponsors re-think their relationship with the LPGA. For they can be dispensed with by this crazy commissioner who chases dollars at the same time she kicks sponsors in the pants.

Hound dog writes-

As I mentioned last night on Inside The LPGA, the increase in rights fees (approximately $2 million per year, almost double the previous amount) from the new deal is significantly offset by the loss of the $1.2 million purse from the SBS Open. If this event isn’t replaced on the 2010 schedule, the deal isn’t nearly as impressive.

If what Sirak wrote above is true, the difference between the deals was only a million. To me the LPGA came out a loser, 4 million from J Golf compared to 3 million from SBS plus the 1.2 million tournament purse. That’s a net 200,000 loss to me. Can Carolyn Bivens add?

Ryan at Waggleroom has a differing opinion-

On the surface, it’s easy to recall the situation with Ginn that led to the demise of the ShopRite event in Atlantic City. The LPGA Tour took the allure of big money from an organization with not nearly as sure footed as ShopRite. And now it is paying dearly. Still, given that the LPGA Tour is losing significant revenue by losing several tournaments this year, this may have been a forced move.

I don’t see anything forced at all in the changeover from SBS to J golf. All I see is another step on the road to disaster for the LPGA Tour if they allow their present commissioner to keep making these decisions.

I’ll say it again. Fire Carolyn Bivens now!

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The LPGA Ginn Open is dead

Another hole has been blown in the 2009 US Women’s professional golf schedule. From the Orlando Sentinel-

The recession has claimed another victim: the Ginn Open, the LPGA Tour’s lone event in Central Florida.

Ginn Sports Entertainment and Ginn Development Company announced Wednesday afternoon that they will no longer host, produce or sponsor professional golf tournaments, including the Ginn Open at Reunion Resort and the Champions Tour Ginn Championship in Palm Coast.

“The economy is rough, and it’s no surprise,” Ginn Open Tournament Director Linda Chen said.

This year’s Ginn Open had been slated for April 16-19, and it is unclear whether the LPGA Tour can find a replacement tournament for that point on the schedule.

The chances of a replacement being found between now and April rank up there with my winning the Florida lottery in any given drawing. It isn’t going to happen.

No one from the LPGA has commented on this latest tournament debacle. AP reports that VP of LPGA communications Connie Wilson as saying because of travel and schedules the tour would have no immediate comment.

Which might be true. Or Carolyn Bivens and other officials are in a bunker somewhere just like they were when their horrendous LPGA English policy was announced not by the tour, but by a member of the golf media. You mean there isn’t one person available on the cell phone right now? I find that hard to believe.

LPGA blogger Hound dog writes-

Despite the reality of the current economic situation, I am pissed off about this announcement. Thanks for waiting until only 11 weeks before your event to pull out, fellas. Thanks for giving the Tour absolutely no chance to replace your over-speculated asses. Thanks for shooting yet another hole in our schedule and removing one of its largest purses to boot. Thanks for giving our Commissioner a reason to alienate and then kick out one of the Tour’s longest-running sponsorships three years ago – since most folks are still buying groceries these days, I imagine the ShopRite people would already be preparing to host their ’09 tournament if you guys hadn’t come barging in.

Hound Dog is right, it would have nice if the company didn’t wait so long to announce the inevitable. The demise of the Ginn Open comes as little surprise to people and blogger knowledgeable about the LPGA considering how the Ginn Tribute folded.

I wrote about the Shoprite debacle two years ago. To make way for Ginn, the LPGA gave the shaft to Shoprite who rather than take crappy dates on the schedule, pulled the plug on their Atlantic City event. It was an outrageous way to treat a long-time LPGA sponsor that earned Carolyn Bivens a Knucklehead award a few months later when she gave the shaft to another LPGA tournament sponsor, Wendy’s. Don’t forget ADT pulled their sponsorship of the year ending West Palm Beach tournament last year because of tournament pricing, not a change in marketing as the LPGA claims.

I wonder how LPGA headquarters will spin the Ginn Story? Some how I imagine a official speaking with the song ‘Don’t worry, be happy.’ playing in the background.

The LPGA will need luck to survive in the US over the next few years. In the meantime, I will repeat what I been saying multiple times for over two years. Carolyn Bivens has to go or the LPGA Tour is cooked.

A few extra notes-

There is no Florida tournament on the 2009 LPGA schedule now. The ADT is defunct, and the Stanford International which was played in the Miami area last year, has since moved to Texas.

The Ginn Open trophy was named after Kelly Jo Dowd, the mother of Dakoda Dowd a amateur who played in the inaugural tournament. Mrs Dowd died less than two years ago.

Her husband, Dakoda’s father, Mike Dowd was quoted as saying-

“It would have been phenomenal to have Kelly Jo’s name on that trophy for years to come, We got one year.”

One year is better than none. God bless the Dowd family. Mike Dowd also said-

“There’s going to be a lot of sad folks over this,” Mike Dowd said.

I’m betting there are a great many angry LPGA golfers because of this too.

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The LPGA in South Korea or where in the world is Carolyn Bivens?

For their once a year tour stop, The Hana Bank Kolon Championship. It will be played October 31-November 2nd at The Sky 72 Golf Club, Ocean Course in Incheon. The tournament dates back to 2001, when the inaugeral event was canceled after 9-11 occured.

This is a limited field event, with just 69 players. 12 of whom are KLPGA players, including this year’s British Open champ and Rolex#8 player in the world, Ji-Yai Shin. While Lorena Ochoa, Annika Sorenstam, and Yani Tseng aren’t playing, the field is still pretty strong. Defending champ Suzann Pettersen, Paula Creamer, and likely 2008 Comeback Player of the Year Helen Alfredsson are in the field.

Suzann Pettersen won last year’s event by one shot over Eun-Hi-Ji. The tournament was called after 36 holes due to bad weather.

Last year’s event was notable for a few things.

1- Pettersen was the first non-Korean winner of the tournament. Past winners include LPGA major champs Se Ri Pak and Grace Park, plus first time winners Shi Hyun ‘Cinderella’ Ahn, Jee Young ‘Jelly’ Lee, and Jin Jong Hong. Ahn, Lee, and Hong were all non-LPGA players at the time, and their wins earned them LPGA Tour cards. Could a KLPGA player do the same in 2008? Here’s one name to look out for, Sun Ju Ahn.

2- After the Sunday final round was canceled, some golf fans got upset. In a season ending post on the good, bad, and just bizarre for 2007 on the LPGA tour, I gave these protesters my ‘Pitchforks and Torches’ award. Who says LPGA golf fans aren’t enthusiastic.

A picture of Se Ri Pak(center) and company. Many of the golfers behind Se Ri publicly state that they took up the sport after seeing the Hall of Famer excel at the LPGA Tour starting in 1998.

It has been an excellent year for the South Korean ladies after the off 2007 where only four of them won on tour, and none took home a major Championship. After a ten month victory drought, Seon Hwa Lee, Eun Hi Ji, In-Bee Park, Ji Young Oh, Ji Yai Shin, and In-Kyung Kim all took home titles. Lee actually winning two times. Seven tournament wins, including two major championships. Shin at the British Open, and In-bee Park at the US Open. Three players from South Korea rank in the top 10 money winners, eight in the top 20*.

This tournament is important for players wanting to make the tour ending ADT Championship. The ADT has a one million dollar purse for the golfer who wins it. At present, Eight South Korean players have qualified for the field. At least Another five would qualify if the current points standing holds.

As of yet, no Carolyn Bivens sighting this week . Would she show her face in South Korea after the ‘English language policy‘ debacle of two months ago?

There is no North America television coverage of the tournament. The LPGA is off the air for 3 weeks as the tour travels through Asia.(China last week, Japan next week)

LPGA bloggers Hound Dog and The Constructivist have their own previews up.

*- 2007 LPGA Rookie of the Year Angela Park was born in Brazil, but has lived in the United States since age 8. She recently became a naturalized US citizen and has two brothers at present serving in the American armed forces. Some members of the media can’t keep it straight that Angela isn’t from South Korea. She’s never lived in the country. Park is currently #3 in points in order to qualify for the ADT Championship.


LPGA Commissioner Carolyn Bivens speaks

She answered questions from the golf media yesterday about the tour’s recently rescinded penalties for players who don’t speak enough English. First we’ll start with Golf Week’s Beth Ann Baldry-

GW: If that’s the case, then why did you change the policy?
CB: It isn’t a policy. It’s a program. What we did was rescind the playing suspension.

Golfweek: Can you take me through last week and how you went from Tuesday’s memo to Friday’s memo?
Carolyn Bivens: What we said in the policy was that we listened to the feedback.

First the Commisioner says it is a program not a policy. Then Bivens calls it a policy. Get me some dramamine fast. I’m feeling seasick.

The fun isn’t over yet.

GW: Looking back on the way everything developed, is there anything you would do differently? Is there anything the LPGA has learned from this?
CB: We learn from everything.

GW: Would you care to expand on that?
CB: The only thing I would expand on there is that this was not an announcement and it was not a policy. Unfortunately that is the way that it was portrayed.

The only mistake the Commish sees is that the dumb headed idea wasn’t properly presented by others. How about you Carolyn not going on vacation and letting Golfweek instead break the news rather than the LPGA Tour? I can think of a few other mistakes made but I’m guessing you’ll never fess up to them.

GW: Looking back on it now, do you wish you have discussed the penalty portion with more sponsors or . . .
CB: Sponsors never want to be part of these decisions.

What was it State Farm said a week ago about not liking the LPGA not communicating to them about the new policy or program or what ever and asking for their feedback.

The spewing of nonsense from Carolyn Bivens isn’t done yet. Compare what she said to Golfweek, and what Tommy Hicks reports for a Alabama newspaper.

She said the meeting was meant to address those issues, as well as issues that would assist players in marketing, communication and competition, but what was highlighted “was about 10 percent” of what was discussed. “We were addressing sponsors’ needs and requirements.”

LOL Bivens contradicts what she told Golfweek. Is this woman lying or out right unbalanced? In either case, Carolyn Bivens has no business running a professional sports organization. The LPGA would be wise to dump their commissioner and the sooner the better.

Hat tip- Ryan at Waggle room. I suggest all my readers read what Ryan has to say.


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