‘That’s All They Were’: Dustin Johnson and Other LIV Golf Defectors Get Called Out by Tiger Woods’ Former Coach

Published 03/08/2023, 5:30 PM EST

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Among the most decorated coaches in golf’s history, Hank Haney has been credited as one of the sport’s best instructors. Indeed, his time with Tiger Woods in the early 2000s wreaked havoc in golf’s record books, with the golfer winning a majority of his major championships during this period. Golf’s latest news concerns the PGA vs LIV battle that fails to rage on. So, how does Haney feel about the LIV defectors?

Does PGA Tour miss its LIV defectors?

The surreal winner discussed the latest happenings in golf in the latest episode of his podcast, ‘The Hank Haney Podcast’. His discussions involved the PGA Tour’s latest changes for the 2024 season, which have drawn strong reactions from the golf community.


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Similar to the spreading word, Haney criticized the new regime to make the game more lucrative for the best players in the world. But does Haney consider the LIV defectors to have forced the PGA Tour to make such drastic decisions?

“I mean, they’re missing, you know, Cam Smith, they’re missing Brooks Koepka, they’re missing Dustin Johnson, Bryson DeChambeau… they’re [PGA Tour] missing stars,” he said.

Hank Haney calls out LIV defectors as “support casts”

Furthermore, the 67-year-old revealed that the absence of his most successful student in the lucrative league was a boost for the PGA Tour. “There’s no Tiger Woods out there. So it’s not like they lost Tiger Woods. No, they just lost a bunch of guys [who] used to support Tiger Woods.”


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“They were the supporting cast. That’s all they were,” he said of the LIV defectors.

via Reuters

Haney also spoke glowingly about the recent events taking place on the PGA Tour. The newly designated ‘elevated’ events have been keenly contested and have attracted large audiences. “The elevated events, the ones you know, with the field, the Phoenix waste management, the tournament at Riviera, the Genesis, the Arnold Palmer Invitational, these tournaments have been awesome,” he said.


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Starting from the 2024 season, the PGA Tour has sought a brand-new format for some designated events. These tournaments will be no-cut events and will likely have smaller fields, features that have drawn parallels to the LIV Golf Series.

Watch this story– Golf World Reacts to ‘Strange’ Tiger Woods’ Achievement



Written by:

Sharan Nair


One take at a time

Sharan is an Engineering student with a desire to carve out a career in sports journalism. He is an ardent Tiger Woods fan and his 2019 Masters victory is what further cemented his love for the golfer. A die hard football fan, Sharan can be seen cheering for Real Madrid, and playing FIFA every chance he gets.
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Edited by:

Manaal Siddiqui