Justin Timberlake will share top billing with Shriners Hospital for the last time this week, as the PGA Tour tournament officials announced Monday they were cutting ties with the pop star/actor-turned golf event impresario.
Next year, the current Justin Timberlake Shiners Hospitals for Children Open will ax Clint Eastwood’s golf partner as host of the tilt, which will become part of the tour’s regular-season schedule and count toward the FedEx Cup playoffs in 2014, according to the Las Vegas Review.
The Shriners will sponsor the event, which has been part of the Fall Series of competitions that have no FedEx Cup implications, for another five years at TPC Summerlin in Las Vegas. Timberlake, who helped raise millions of dollars with tourney-related concerts in his first four years as namesake, failed to attract top players to the contest on a regular basis, organizers charged.
Callaway Golf’s creative director was also a no-show behind the scenes, according to tourney chair Raoul Frevel.
"We're a world-class organization," Frevel told the Review. "At the time we got involved with golf, we were told by the tour we needed a big name, and that's how our relationship with Justin came about.
"Justin's a wonderful person,” he said. “But we tried everything we could to get him more involved with our kids and the hospitals. But it seemed that when the TV cameras weren't on, he disappeared."
A source close to the event told SBNation that Timberlake fulfilled all of his commitments and would not return in 2013 because the tournament's five-year agreement with him had ended.
Indeed, tourney director Adam Sperling praised Timberlake for his efforts.
"The future of pro golf here in Las Vegas wasn't very secure when Justin and the Shriners came in five years ago," Sperling told the Review. "Justin added a level of cache and star power in a city that understands the value of that."
This year’s tournament starts on Thursday with U.S. Ryder Cup captain Davis Love, Nick Watney, and Vijai Singh as headliners.