After five years, the Vijay Singh vs. the PGA Tour lawsuit over Singh’s admitted use of deer antler spray was settled yesterday–a mere week before it was scheduled for trial. I always thought the Tour was scared to death they’d have to disclose previously secret documents regarding who they chose as poster child victims for PED use/abuse. Thus, new Tour commish Jay Monahan smartly decided to cut his loses (financial and public embarrassment) and pay Singh no doubt a mountain of hush money.
SI.com’s excellent sports attorney Michael McGann summarizes the principal parties stance in the lawsuit.
The NY Times offers up what the settlement means(besides Singh potentially pocketing more hush money loot more than either Phil or Tiger will deposit after Friday’s match).
“I’m very happy for Vijay that the matter has been resolved,” said Jeffrey Rosenblum, one of his lawyers. The PGA Tour said in a statement that the settlement reflected a mutual commitment to move forward.
The tour sent a sample from Singh to be tested; it returned small amounts of IGF-1. Under the tour’s policy, admission of using a banned substance is a violation even without a test. The tour told him on Feb. 19, 2013, that he would be suspended for three months. Two months later, the tour dropped its case. The next week, Singh sued the tour, claiming “public humiliation and ridicule” from the 12-week investigation.
The PGA TOUR fully supports Vijay as he continues to be a true champion on the PGA TOUR and PGA TOUR Champions.
The PGA TOUR recognizes that Vijay is one of the hardest working golfers ever to play the game, and does not believe that he intended to gain an unfair advantage over his fellow competitors in this matter.
Vijay fully supports the PGA TOUR’s Anti-Doping Program and all efforts to protect the integrity of the game that he loves so much. The parties will make no statement concerning the settlement terms resolving this matter.
The Tour should’ve known that Singh is a tireless fighter and has no problem creating a fuss. So, lesson learned. A very expensive one at that.