LIV Golf denies report it’s close to paying Fox to air tourneys (NASDAQ:FOX)

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Breakaway Saudi-backed golf league LIV Golf is denying a report that it’s nearing a deal to buy TV time on Fox Sports (NASDAQ:FOX) (NASDAQ:FOXA) in order to air its tournaments, after having trouble settling on a media partner that would pay it for coverage.

That deal would be with Fox Sports 1, Golfweek said in a report citing multiple sources.

Media companies typically pay rights fees (which are high, and getting higher) to sports leagues in order to air the sports and reap benefits from the advertising sales. A LIV deal with Fox would go the other way, with LIV paying for coverage, Golfweek said.

But LIV Golf said in a statement that Golfweek’s report was “incomplete and inaccurate” and that it was ahead of schedule, including in the area of broadcast rights.

Two weeks ago, LIV Golf CEO/Commissioner Greg Norman said “We’re talking to four different networks, and live conversations where offers are being put on the table.”

“As we have stated previously, LIV Golf is just beginning its process and is in active discussions with several companies about broadcasting the LIV Golf League,” the league’s new statement said. “We caution that no one should draw any conclusions about potential media rights given that we are still in the middle of negotiations with several outlets.”

Meanwhile, any deal to buy time from Fox Sports 1 would be fraught as the network has a heavy fall schedule of college football.

Two weeks ago, the WSJ reported that Apple and Amazon were the latest to join a large list of media partners passing up the opportunity to purchase rights to LIV Golf, including ESPN, CBS, NBC or Fox.

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