The CW suddenly cut away from Dustin Johnson’s LIV Golf win in favor of regularly scheduled programming

LIV Golf’s broadcast plan still has a long way to go to truly compete with the PGA Tour

LIV Golf’s tournament in Oklahoma had an exciting finish Sunday afternoon.

At least, that’s what it sounds like. Most fans in the United States weren’t actually able to watch Dustin Johnson’s win in Tulsa.

After Johnson birdied the final hole to force a three-way playoff with Branden Grace and Cameron Smith, most regional networks cut away from the tournament. There wasn’t anything else special going on, either. The networks just opted for regularly scheduled programming.

In some cases, affiliates of The CW showed local news programs, sitcom reruns and even infomercials. Even the local CW affiliate in Tulsa left coverage.

For viewers in most major markets in the United States, the only way to actually keep up with the end of the tournament was through The CW app.

While LIV Golf’s ratings haven’t been great so far in its second season — which is its first with a real television deal — a playoff should have drawn the best numbers of the day. Had this happened on the PGA Tour, NBC or CBS would have undoubtedly extended its coverage to take full advantage of the ratings bump.

Now, it’s not really clear how many people actually missed out on Johnson’s win in Tulsa on Sunday. LIV Golf has a revenue-sharing arrangement with The CW, and that’s only in certain markets throughout the country. The first two tournaments this season averaged less than 300,000 viewers in the final two days of competition. During those two tournaments, an estimated 30 million viewers weren’t even able to watch the tournament on their local channel. LIV Golf, on the other hand, claims it had a total audience of more than 3 million viewers for its season opener, though the league used a combination of metrics to get there.

The numbers from last weekend’s tournament aren’t out yet, but it’s hard to imagine golf fans will be that upset over the TV snub for very long. Many LIV Golf members are already on their way to the PGA Championship this week at Oak Hill Country Club in New York. The league has another tournament in the Washington, D.C., area later this month, too. It’s very easy to just move on and turn attention to the second major championship of the year.

But the decision to cut away from the biggest moment of the weekend in Oklahoma on Sunday shows just how far LIV Golf truly has to go broadcast-wise in its battle to compete with the PGA Tour.