Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson coronavirus relief golf match is on and could happen in May

Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson look on prior to The Match: Tiger vs Phil at Shadow Creek Golf Course on November 23, 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada. 

Harry How | Getty Images

NFL icons Tom Brady and Peyton Manning will join superstars Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson in a golf match organized by AT&T’s WarnerMedia and the PGA Tour, a person familiar with the negotiations confirmed to CNBC.

The match pitting Mickelson-Brady against Woods-Manning would be a rare sporting event in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, which has spurred game cancellations and suspensions across professional sports.

The person, who requested to not be identified as negotiations are stilling being finalized, said the event would likely happen in May and would benefit charity. Though nothing is official, the event could take place live on Turner Sports’ TNT channel or elsewhere in the WarnerMedia company, but its unlikely to be featured on pay-per-view.

News that Brady and Manning could participate in the event was first reported by golf journalist Robert Lusetich.

Officials coordinating the event also plan to feature stars throughout the PGA, NFL, and National Basketball Association. That would include Hall of Famer Charles Barkley, who currently serves as an NBA on TNT studio analyst, for off-site guest commentary. 

Barkley also assisted with the 2018 Turner Sports broadcast event when Woods and Mickelson squared off head-to-head. The pair played in a $9 million winner-takes-all prize in Las Vegas which resulted in Mickelson beating Woods on the 22nd hole.

“This is very different than anything golf has ever done in the past,” Woods said of the 2018 event. “We’re able to showcase our sport in such a different light and all the different technologies we’re going to be bringing to this event and to do it differently than any other golfing event has ever been done.”

The match would be held at an undisclosed location without fans, feature a small production crew to film. Each individual would also obey the social-distancing recommendations to stay six-feet apart.

On March 12, leagues throughout the country followed the NBA’s lead to cancel or suspend games due to the coronavirus pandemic. The PGA Tour postponed the Masters, which was scheduled to start April 9.

If the WarnerMedia-PGA Tour collaboration can pull off the two-on-two match, it should benefit efforts in golf to grow a new audience.

It would also come on the heels of a new nine-year deal with ViacomCBS and Comcast‘s NBCUniversal that will keep weekend coverage of most tournaments on CBS and NBC.

The deal will value the total package of rights at about $700 million per year, more than a 70% increase over the PGA’s prior rights agreement. The new deal begins in 2022 and ends in 2030.

Disclosure: NBCUniversal is the parent company of NBC and CNBC.

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