TGL season postponed a year due to damage at indoor facility

Arthur Blank-owned Atlanta Drive GC won’t start until early 2025
Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy talk as they walk down the 11th fairway during their practice round for the 2023 Masters Tournament at Augusta National Golf Club, Monday, April 3, 2023, in Augusta, Ga. Jason Getz / Jason.Getz@ajc.com)

Credit: Jason Getz / Jason.Getz@ajc.com

Credit: Jason Getz / Jason.Getz@ajc.com

Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy talk as they walk down the 11th fairway during their practice round for the 2023 Masters Tournament at Augusta National Golf Club, Monday, April 3, 2023, in Augusta, Ga. Jason Getz / Jason.Getz@ajc.com)

The start of the TGL season has been postponed until early 2025 due to damage sustained at the golf simulator facility, it was announced on Monday.

The damage to the SoFi Center in Palm Beach, Florida facility occurred on Nov. 14 after a failure of the temporary power system and backup systems used during construction caused the dome to deflate and be damaged. There were no injuries and most of the technology was not impacted, according to a statement from the golf league. The area had experienced heavy rains.

A statement issued by the league on Monday read: “Following discussions with key partners, including players, our six team ownership groups, PGA Tour leadership and our commercial partners, SoFi, ESPN and Palm Beach State College, the decision has been made to postpone the start of the TGL season until early 2025. This decision came after reviewing short-term solutions, potential construction timelines, player schedules, and the primetime sports television calendar.”

The Arthur Blank-owned Atlanta Drive GC is one of the six franchises. Other franchises are in Boston, Boston, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco and Florida with a total of 24 PGA Tour golfers.

The simulator golf league, founded by Tiger Woods and Rory McIroy, was to start Jan. 9 with 15 matches televised in prime time. That will now be delayed at least a year.

“I’ve been a believer in TGL, and as the momentum has built this past year, I’m even more excited about what this can become for fans of the game all around the world” Woods said in a statement. “Although the events of last week will force us to make adjustments to our timelines, I’m fully confident that this concept will be brought to life by our great committed players.”

“The postponement brings mixed feelings of disappointment and excitement,” McIlroy said in a statement. “Above all, we are happy that no one was injured. We are looking forward to the launch of TGL. Given the circumstances, while the delay is disappointing, the postponement will allow us to regroup, refocus and return stronger.”

Atlanta Drive team members are Justin Thomas, Patrick Cantlay, Billy Horschel and Lucas Glover.

“We are fully committed to TGL, building Atlanta Drive GC into a premier team and doing our part to collectively grow the game of golf in 2025 when TGL brings the game to current and future golf fans in new and exciting ways,” Blank said in a statement. “While this delay has slowed us down for a moment, I’ve always believed challenges present tremendous opportunity. I’m confident this pause will allow TGL to present an even more compelling product, the teams to build stronger brands and audiences in our markets and partners more time to plan strong fan engagement programs. We’ll spend the year doing that with Atlanta Drive GC, while cheering for Justin Thomas, Patrick Cantlay, Billy Horschel, and Lucas Glover as we all get ready to push for a TGL championship in 2025.”

The TGL said it has begun to update plans and timelines.

The SoFi Center is a basketball-type arena, golfers will hit drives into a large IMAX-type screen on half of the court. The other half of the court features a putting green built on 60 pistons that can create different undulations. Real bunkers can be moved around the putting green complex. Golfers also will have to hit out of sand and different roughs.