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Scottie Scheffler is trying to make history at The Players Championship. No one has ever won the tournament two years in a row

Tiger Woods and Jack Nicklaus never accomplished this, even before The Players Championship was located in the TPC Sawgrass.

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. — Tiger Woods and Jack Nicklaus never achieved this feat, even before The Players Championship moved to the TPC Sawgrass.

The 50th edition of the PGA Tour’s top championship is here, and no one has kept their title. Now it's Scottie Scheffler's turn, and the chances are in his favor just as much as with previous winners.

This includes Woods, who only had one shot at it in 2002 and ended up tying for 14th place without breaking 70.

“I just think it’s a golf course where you don’t see a lot of repeat winners in general,” Scheffler said. “There’s not a guy that you have seen win on this golf course a bunch.”

Only five players have won twice on the Stadium Course at the TPC Sawgrass. Nicklaus won The Players three times, but that was before it moved permanently to this Pete Dye arena of endless thrills and that one (mostly) island green on the par-3 17th.

Scheffler is the current world No. 1 and the first defending champion of The Players to be at the top of the world ranking since Jason Day in 2016. The difference is Scheffler came to Sawgrass straight from a dominant five-shot win at Bay Hill.

Already the best from tee-to-green, his putter finally came to life, and other top golfers had every reason to be nervous.

“I’ve personally had some really, really nice ball-striking weeks,” FedEx Cup champion Viktor Hovland said. “But for him to have done that for so long and won so many tournaments that he’s done the last couple years is very, very impressive. Because you get into periods of times where you feel like you can’t miss and you’re hitting it on a string, but then next month it might feel a little bit difficult. He just seems to keep doing what he’s doing.”

Scheffler has been No. 1 for the last 10 months, and it’s not difficult to do the math. Along with three victories in the last year — that includes the Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas — he has finished out of the top 10 only three times in 22 tournaments.

How that translates to Sawgrass is yet to be seen, even on a course where a year ago it looked as though he was playing alone. He led by six shots at one point and won by five shots, just as he did at the Arnold Palmer Invitational.

However, history is not on his side. The Stadium Course has a reputation of never favoring a single style of golf, and there is trouble just about everywhere that everyone seems to find at some point over the tournament.

“That’s why I think it’s one of the best places we play on tour, just because it really doesn’t suit one type of player,” Scheffler said. “Bomb-and-gouge doesn’t really work out here. But then you even have the shorter hitters that plot it around that can struggle here, because you got to hit it exactly where you’re looking or you’re going to be punished pretty severely.”

What has changed is The Players now needs an asterisk, but only if it claims to have the strongest and deepest field in golf. World ranking aside, golf is so divided now because of the defections to LIV Golf that all the best are not at Sawgrass — not Masters champion Jon Rahm or Cameron Smith, who conquered Sawgrass two years ago. Not Dustin Johnson and Brooks Koepka or Bryson DeChambeau.

According to PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan, there is no quick solution.

Monahan said that reaching a deal with the Saudis and fixing the problems in golf will take some time.

The Players begins on Thursday, and it's a chance to focus on the competition for four days.

Xander Schauffele criticized Monahan, suggesting that the commissioner still needs to earn trust. Rory McIlroy, however, expressed support for Monahan, stating that he is the right person for the job and that the tour is in a stronger position with new funding from private investors.

Scheffler implied that the players who are not at Sawgrass this week due to LIV are at fault for the division.

Scheffler pointed out that the players who left are to blame for the separation, causing upset among fans.

Schauffele summed it up well.

Schauffele expressed that it would be ideal to have those players competing, but felt that discussing it in the media room was becoming repetitive.

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