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To cut or not to cut? That is the question for the PGA Tour’s designated events

DUBLIN, Ohio – Earlier this month, PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan appeared to offer the final voice on the debate about whether the designated events will have cuts starting next season.

“Our preference on where we are at this point is that all those events, the designated events, would be no-cut events. But we’re in the middle of figuring all this out, so you’ve got to consider all that input,” Monahan said.

That input has largely built on the side of the three player-hosted invitationals – the Genesis Invitational, Arnold Palmer Invitational and Memorial – having cuts.

Full-field tee times from the Memorial Tournament

“I’ve gone back and forth on this issue. I was an advocate for no cut and the more time has gone by I’ve become an advocate for a cut,” Jon Rahm said Tuesday at the Memorial. “It’s a part of the game, and I think it’s an important part of the game, as harsh as it may be to cut out maybe only 20 players. You earn your way into the weekend, and then you earn that win. It’s a part I enjoy and I experienced recently at the PGA.”

The 16 designated events next year include the four majors, The Players Championship – which will remain full-field tournaments with cuts – as well as the three playoff events. The remaining eight events will feature 70-to-80 player fields and, as of right now, no cut.

“No offense to the best players in the world, but nobody wants to watch you shoot 80 on Sunday if they’re playing like crap,” Brandt Snedeker said. “The Tour has always been set up for meritocracy, you keep what you earn and you need to play well on Thursday and Friday to make the cut. If it’s me and I’m playing like crap, I don’t want to go and finish dead last on Sunday, and I don’t think anybody wants to watch it.”

The Tour’s push for no cuts at the designated events did receive a boost Tuesday at Muirfield Village when tournament host Jack Nicklaus appeared to reverse his previous thoughts on not having a cut at the Memorial.

“I liked the cut before because we felt like having guys play all day was nice to have on the golf course, giving some young [players] an opportunity to play that might not otherwise get a chance to play,” Nicklaus said. “But as I said, there’s two sides to that coin, and I think I’m going to leave that to people that are certainly a lot smarter than I am, which would be [Monahan] and those guys.”

At the Masters, when he was asked about his event, the Genesis Invitational, Tiger Woods was a proponent of keeping a cut.

“There’s still some ongoing discussions about some of the designated events and whether or not we’re going to have cuts going forward,” Woods said. “I certainly am pushing for my event to have a cut.”