Both players' endorsement agreements were terminated after deciding to play in the LIV Golf Invitational Series
On Tuesday evening, Dustin Johnson and Graeme McDowell were among the 42 players confirmed to play in next week's LIV Golf Invitational Series opener in London. On Wednesday afternoon, both players had their respective endorsement deals with RBC, a Canadian financial services company that is the title sponsor for the Canadian Open and the PGA Tour's RBC Heritage, terminated.
"As a result of the decisions made by professional golfers Dustin Johnson and Graeme McDowell to play the LIV Golf Invitational Series opener, RBC is terminating its sponsorship agreement with both players," RBC said in a statement to Sportico. "We wish them well in their future endeavours."
Johnson and McDowell are the latest players to have endorsements terminated because of their association with the Saudi-backed upstate league. In February, KPMG and Heineken N.V., the parent company for Amstel Light, cut ties to Phil Mickelson, while Workday let its agreement run out and Callaway Golf put their relationship on "pause." In May, UPS ended its agreements with Lee Westwood and Louis Oosthuizen.
Also Wednesday, the PGA Tour reiterated its stance on players opting to play LIV Golf Invitational events.
“As communicated to our entire membership on May 10, PGA TOUR members have not been authorized to participate in the Saudi Golf League’s London event, under PGA TOUR Tournament Regulations. Members who violate the Tournament Regulations are subject to disciplinary action."
What disciplinary action is currently uncertain, but the London field currently has a number of PGA Tour members, including Louis Oosthuizen, Kevin Na, Talor Gooch, Sergio Garcia and Hudson Swafford. The field currently features four players ranked inside the Official World Golf Rankings top 50 and 16 of the top 100.
The 48-player field will be filled out by five Asian Tour qualifiers and one yet-to-be determined player, though it's expected that the spot is reserved for Mickelson.
The LIV Golf Field, by OWGR
Average: 300.8 pic.twitter.com/ZboqAPpL9g
— Rick Gehman (@RickRunGood) June 1, 2022