Greg Norman is embroiled in another legal matter, this time in the lawsuit between the Nicklaus Companies and Jack Nicklaus.
On March 20, the LIV Golf CEO and commissioner was the subject of a subpoena duces tecum (subpoena for documents) issued by the Nicklaus Companies in a case in the Supreme Court of the State of New York.
According to the subpoena, the Nicklaus Companies, the Plaintiff, would like any and all documentation in regard to a Washington Post article on June 5, 2022, titled “The Shark Is on The Attack Again.”
Of specific interest is the part of the article that noted that the LIV Golf tour “had his blessing,” referring to Nicklaus giving his support to the fledging tour.
In the request, the subpoena asks for all documentation that Jack Nicklaus, the Nicklaus family or their agents communicated with LIV Golf, but no direct testimony.
According to the subpoena, Norman must produce the requested documents no later than 20 days after service, and the date of service is not known.
On May 13, 2022, the Nicklaus Companies, a company founded by Nicklaus, sued the Golden Bear in six separate causes of action, mainly regarding breach of contract between the two parties.
As part of the original complaint, the Nicklaus Companies claimed that negotiations took place between Golf Saudi for a deal that would compensate Nicklaus for publicly supporting the new golf league (LIV Golf), which was
contrary to rights assigned to the Nicklaus Companies.
It was further claimed that such a deal, with Nicklaus being paid to endorse a rival of the PGA Tour, also could have resulted in negative publicity, especially given Nicklaus’s widespread recognition as one of the founders of the modern PGA Tour.
In an affidavit dated Sept. 28, 2022, Nicklaus stated that he met with Saudi officials in March 2021 at the behest of the Nicklaus Companies about a potential new championship-level golf course in Qiddiya, Saudi Arabia.
With most of the time was spent discussing the potential new project, toward the end of the meeting the Saudi clients brought up the new golf league, which they were then calling the Premier Golf League.
After a short discussion about what it would entail, Nicklaus called Jay Monahan, the PGA Tour commissioner, to find out what he knew about the new league. He told Nicklaus that the Tour had no interest in it.
In a subsequent meeting in May 2021, Nicklaus’s son Jack II, reached out to Nicklaus about meeting with the Saudi group again.
It was during that meeting that Nicklaus was asked to be the face of the new golf league at a price of more than $100 million.
Nicklaus immediately said it was something he couldn’t do and told the Saudi officials that he appreciated their offer but had to decline, as he had helped create the PGA Tour and was not willing to turn his back on it.
It is possible that Norman may have a problem delivering documents to Nicklaus Companies that involved any discussions about LIV Golf since they are in antitrust litigation with the PGA Tour in U.S. District Court in San Jose and any disclosure could be prohibited by that court.