Whether the players want to admit it or not, the main driving factor behind a golfer moving to LIV Golf was the money.
From a purely financial perspective, it's easy to understand why many decided to jump ship. They were offered huge signing on bonuses, with Phil Mickelson pocketing a rumoured $250million before he even teed up at one of their events. Then you have the actual prize money, which often dwarfed what was on offer in the PGA Tour despite facing a much less competitive field.
Of course, you have countless arguments against making the move, including questions around competitiveness and the morality of contributing to what is a clear sportswashing project.
Still, last weekend was an example of why many players decided to make the move.
Graeme McDowell earned more money than Shane Lowry last week
LIV Golf held their first event of 2023 last week, taking place in Playa del Carmen in Mexico. As you would expect, the prize money on offer was jaw-dropping.
Charles Howell won the tournament, pocketing an individual prize of $4million in the process.
That is one thing, but it's the prize money handed out a bit further down the field is what really raises some eyebrows.
As reported by the Irish Mirror, Graeme McDowell earned more money than Shane Lowry this week, despite the latter recording a top-five finish at a prestigious PGA Tour event.
The Offaly man pocketed $288,120 for his finish of tied-fifth in the Honda Classic, a nice payday at this early stage of the season.
However, despite finishing in tied-11th in the LIV Golf event, Graeme McDowell won $405,000 for his middle of the road exploits in Mexico.
This is a prime example of why players moved to the new tour. McDowell looked highly likely to lose his PGA Tour card prior to his move to LIV, ending his time as a top level golfer. Instead, he is now consistently earning more money than he did even at the peak of his powers.
You give up a lot by moving to the Saudi tour, but it is clear why the average journeyman pro would be attracted to it.
The discrepancy in prize money is something the PGA Tour will need to address somewhat if it is to avoid losing more big name players in the future.