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PGA Tour looking at making FedEx Cup playoffs less volatile

Tim Finchem
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NORTON, Mass. – Although the PGA Tour likes to say the FedEx Cup is a season-long race, Camilo Villegas could, if he won this week’s Deutsche Bank Championship, jump into the top 10 on the points list and secure a spot in the season finale at East Lake.

Not bad for a guy who posted just two top 10s in the regular season, but not exactly what the Tour would like to see.

“The only thing on the points right now we are focused on is whether the amount of volatility because of the amount of points in the playoffs is a little too strong,” Tour commissioner Tim Finchem told Golf Channel this week. “We’ve been talking about this the last couple of years. We may, this fall, make a decision to not have quite as much volatility. It’s the one remaining thing we think might deserve some attention.”

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One member of the player advisory council told that points volatility during the playoffs was discussed during Wednesday’s PAC meeting and that the circuit seems likely to address that at the season’s final policy board meeting.

The PAC member, who requested anonymity, said the likely fix is to go to a “four times” system, with playoff winners earning four times the number of points awarded at a regular-season Tour stop (500) instead of the current “five times” formula.

Currently, playoff winners earn 2,500 points, which is designed to add more weight to the playoffs and persuade the top players to participate in all four post-season stops.

“Somewhere between three (times) and four (times) would probably be best. You have to make these important and make sure everyone shows up,” the PAC member said. “It’s tough to say (a playoff win) is worth four or five Masters (major championship winners earn 600 points).”

Last season, for example, Brandt Snedeker started the playoffs 19th on the points list but played his way to the FedEx Cup crown with his victory at East Lake.