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Paul Azinger has slammed the current state of the PGA Tour in its ongoing feud with LIV Golf.

The former NBC lead golf analyst was axed by the national broadcaster in November but admits he does not miss watching the PGA Tour.

Speaking to Adam Schupak of Golfweek, Azinger joined the growing list of former greats who have taken aim at Jay Monahan’s circuit.

The 64-year-old argues it’s a ‘sad day for golf’, branding the PGA Tour a ‘feeder’ for the Saudi-backed LIV Golf league.

“The best players aren’t all playing PGA Tour tournaments,” he said.

“That’s over. Suddenly, the LIV Tour, let’s just say it like this: the PGA Tour has fast become the qualifier for LIV and it’s a sad day for golf.

“Yeah, I’ve watched a little bit and I’m not missing it that much. I’m not missing it at all.”

Jon Rahm and Tyrrell Hatton were the biggest tide turners ahead of LIV’s return in 2024, as the pair penned multi-million-pound deals to break free from the PGA Tour.

DP World Tour star Adrian Meronk followed suit.

• LIV golfer’s slow play penalty costs him £200,000

• Keith Pelley makes prediction over PGA Tour/LIV Golf future

And if Azinger, a former Ryder Cup and PGA Championship winner, was to re-appear in the booth, it would be to call those European players on their new tour.

Despite having no plans to call professional golf again, Azinger made clear he wouldn’t be covering PGA Tour events, so what about LIV Golf?

“I would not rule that out. But it ain’t gonna happen,” he said. “It would be stupid for me to say, ‘oh, no, I’m ruling that out.’ I don’t rule anything out except the Tour.”

“I’d rather call the Senior Tour than the PGA Tour to tell you the truth. I’m over the PGA Tour. To call the best senior players in the world, at least they’re the best.”

Meanwhile, the Tour’s current leadership certainly wouldn’t entice Azinger back.

Azinger, a member of the Memorial’s Captain’s Club who sits on Jack Nicklaus’s Captain’s Council blasted Monahan for delivering a report on growing the Tour days before the shock ‘merger’ announcement.

“He didn’t even tell Jack,” Azinger added.

“(Jay) gave that report in front of Jack and the heads of the USGA, R&A, PGA, the Masters. There’s about 15 of us in there and I think understandably, everyone in that room is a little down on Jay.

“He’d been negotiating with (PIF) for six months. What the heck, why didn’t you tell everybody that?

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“Why didn’t you just say that? That could have been when he let it out, but he didn’t and he started the battle and then he switched teams in the middle of it and Rory’s fallen on the sword for him, you know?”

The 12-time PGA Tour winner did highlight one tournament he would miss, though, as he won’t call the US Open in June.

“That’s the biggest win that an American can have, certainly any player, it makes their career.

“The stress, pressure, preparation, all that goes in to four night’s sleep, getting ready to play that tournament, and being able to have control of your game, it’s the hardest tournament, so I’m gonna miss that the most.”

After playing on Tour for 30 years, Azinger worked in broadcast for a further 18 years.

NBC is yet to announce his permanent replacement, having rotated between Brandel Chamblee and Paul McGinley, with Luke Donald and Kevin Kisner making appearances.

Azinger suggested that Charles Barkley should take his place.

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John Turnbull A graduate of the University of Stirling, John joined the bunkered team in 2023 as a Content Producer, with a responsibility for covering all breaking news, tour news, grassroots content and much more besides. A keen golfer, he plays the majority of his golf at Falkirk Golf Club. Top of his 'bucket list' is a round of Pebble Beach... ideally in the company of Gareth Bale.

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