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#1 – The PGA tour suspended 17 players that joined LIV, the Saudi-led rival league
On Thursday, the PGA Tour announced the suspensions of 17 of the biggest names in professional golf for their participation in a rival golf league known as the LIV Golf Series. LIV, as it’s known, is funded by the Saudi Arabian sovereign wealth fund e.g. the crown the of the KSA, and smacks of another Saudi upstart in sports that was equally as polarizing, the European Super League for soccer. LIV enticed major golf stars such as Dustin Johnson, Phil Mickelson, and Sergio García with enormous signing bonuses and the largest purse in golf history for their inaugural tournament of $4 million. Obviously, the PGA doesn’t like competition and there’s naturally going to be some question marks surrounding the involvement of an unsavory government like Saudi Arabia and any attempt they might mike to “purchase” athletes. I, for one, am not surprised in the least by these suspensions but eagerly look forward to never hearing a peep about LIV again, just like the soccer Super League.
#2 – Rob Walton, of the Walmart family fortune, buys the Denver Broncos for $4.65 billion
Walmart shoppers, let’s ride. An investment group known as Walton-Penner Group, led by billionaire heir to the Walmart throne, Rob Walton, has entered into an agreement to purchase the Denver Broncos for $4.65 billion. To date, this sale would be one for the record books as the largest sale of a professional sports team and would more than double the previous record when Stevie Cohen bought the New York Mets for $2.4 billy. The most astute readers will note that Rob Walton is the cousin-in-law (I think?) of fellow NFL owner of the Los Angeles Rams, Stan Kroenke. Overall, this is a great franchise with the supremely talented Russell Wilson at the helm. Sure, they play in a tough division, haven’t had a proper rebuild post-Peyton Manning, AND have a brand new, rookie head coach AND GM in the form of Nathaniel Hackett and George Paton but you really, honestly could not ask for a fresher start.
#3 – Massachusetts legislators creep ever nearer to sending a sports betting bill to the Governor’s desk
Massachusetts state Senate Ways and Means Chairman Michael Rodrigues vows to get a sports betting bill on the desk of Governor Charlie Baker as soon as possible (politician soon, not soon-soon). Senator Rodrigues claims that “we’ll work very hard to get this for the governor as soon and as quickly as possible”. The primary pain point for legislators has been navigating the intricacies of wagering on college sports, with many states struggle with as well. State lawmakers hope to legitimize sports betting quickly to deter residents from crossing state lines to wager, especially as the Boston Celtics have made it to the NBA Finals and the state leaves quite a bit of tax revenue on the table.
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