PGA Tour commissioner believes legalized gambling will increase engagement

Photo of PGA Tour commissioner believes legalized gambling will increase engagement
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PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan reaffirmed his stance on the future of sports betting during a press conference at the Tournament of Champions on Saturday, stating his Tour is prepared for legalization while understanding its potential benefits.

"We have for the last couple of years put all the systems in place from an integrity program to monitoring program to our ShotLink technology in place so we can be in a position to participate,” Monahan said, according to Golf Channel's Rex Hoggard. “The reason we would do it is because we think gaming leads to more engagement.”

Monahan added he expects sports betting in golf to be a "second-, third- or fourth-screen experience," meaning fans could follow potential bets in addition to the traditional television broadcast.

The PGA Tour saw a drastic increase in viewership in 2018 due to the return of Tiger Woods - whose match versus Phil Mickelson piqued Monahan's interest from a betting perspective.

“The one thing that I thought was interesting was at their press conference when Phil challenged (Tiger) to a first-hole birdie wager,” Monahan said. “To me, I was really interested in that as much as I was anything else."

However, Monahan admitted he did not make any bets on The Match himself.

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