Emphasize the word “temporary” in temporary restraining order that could allow the participation of LIV Golf players Taylor Gooch, Hudson Swafford and Matt Jones in the FedEx Cup playoffs, which begin this week in Memphis.
Last Wednesday, a group of 11 players, including Phil Mickelson, filed an antitrust suit in U.S. District Court in northern California against the PGA Tour, a move that has been expected, claiming suspension by the tour for joining LIV has been unlawfully harmful to their careers.
Gooch, Jones and Swafford also filed their temporary restraining order last week. They made the top 125 who qualify for the FedEx Cup playoffs. That’s that one that the court will need to act upon quickly.
As the PGA Tour points out, the plaintiffs have waited until now to seek immediate action from the court when they had a couple of months to do so after joining LIV, knowing such a move would lead to suspension.
The tour makes a fair point, but whether the court agrees, or even has time to consider the arguments from both sides before the FedEx Cup playoffs begin, remains to be seen.
Giving the court little time to make a decision could work, at least for now, for the LIV players. Just last month, a judge in the U.K. granted LIV players a temporary stay to play in the Scottish Open, just days before that event got underway, after they had been suspended by the DP World Tour.
This week’s hearing is scheduled for Tuesday afternoon, less than two days before the FedEx Cup playoffs are to begin at the FedEx St. Jude Classic in Memphis. Whatever decision is made on Tuesday will likely only apply to the immediate future.
The nastiness continues to build, with more legal actions expected going forward, but it isn’t limited to the courts.
Last week, Davis Love III suggested that if the courts rule in favour of LIV, PGA Tour players could take the unprecedented step of boycotting any event in which they participate.
It’s been roughly two months since LIV played its first event in London and the vitriol is building in the courts and on the golf course.
Where it stops, nobody knows. It definitely won’t stop on Tuesday when it’s more likely to intensify.