By Phillip Swann
The TV Answer Man –@tvanswerman

Netflix will dip its toe in the live sports waters tonight (November 14) by streaming its original ‘Netflix Cup’ celebrity golf tournament at 6 p.m. ET.

Who’s Playing in the Netflix Cup?

The live event will feature drivers from Netflix’s Formula 1: Drive to Survive and Full Swing racing and golf documentaries. The Netflix Cup, which will include a match play tournament at the Wynn Golf Club at Wynn Las Vegas, will feature the following Formula 1 drivers:

Alex Albon (Williams Racing)
Pierre Gasly (BWT Alpine F1 Team)
Lando Norris (McLaren Racing)
Carlos Sainz (Scuderia Ferrari).

The PGA Tour golfers who will compete:

Rickie Fowler
Max Homa
Collin Morikawa
Justin Thomas.

Late update from Netflix: “Tony Finau will replace Collin Morikawa as Pierre Gasly’s partner in The Netflix Cup, streaming live today at 3pm PT/6pm ET — but Morikawa will still be a part of the live broadcast!”

Netflix says four pairs consisting of one Formula 1 driver and one PGA Tour professional will play an eight-hole match with the top two teams advancing to the final hole, where they will battle for the chance to win the inaugural Netflix Cup title.

Why Is Netflix Streaming a Live Golf Tournament?

Netflix had resisted offering live events for years, particularly sports. However, the streamer earlier this year streamed a live Chris Rock stand-up special as well as a live Love Is Blind reunion show. The latter suffered a technical meltdown but apparently that did not discourage Netflix executives from continuing its new embrace of live streaming. In addition to tonight’s Netflix Cup, Sports Business Journal reports that the company is contemplating a bid for the TV rights to the NBA’s in-season tournament in future years.

In the last year or two, several Netflix streaming competitors, such as Google, Amazon and Apple, have secured deals for such prestigious properties as the NFL’s Thursday Night Football (Amazon) games, the NFL Sunday Ticket (Google), MLB Friday night games (Apple) and the MLS Season Pass package (Apple).

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The TV Answer Man is veteran journalist Phillip Swann who has covered the TV technology scene for more than three decades. He will report on the latest news and answer your questions regarding new devices and services that are changing the way you watch television. See the bio for Phillip Swann here.