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Here's the convoluted — and unlikely — way Tiger Woods can win the FedEx Cup at the Tour Championship

September 17, 2018

Hunter Martin

Technically, all 30 golfers playing in this week's Tour Championship have a chance to win the FedEx Cup. That includes Tiger Woods, whose odds of winning the PGA Tour's $10 million bonus are, let's just say, not better than most.

But again, technically, Tiger has a chance. That's the point of making the tour's (post)season finale, which Woods did thanks to his nearest close call at the BMW Championship. With a T-6 at Aronimink, Woods' sixth top-six finish of 2018, the two-time FedEx Cup winner climbed to No. 20 in the standings. However, in addition to winning at East Lake, he'll need a lot of help. According to the PGA Tour, here are all the things that need to happen for Tiger to take golf's biggest check:

-- No. 1 Bryson DeChambeau finishes T15 or worse
-- No. 2 Justin Rose finishes three-way for 5th or worse
-- No. 3 Tony Finau finishes T3 or worse
-- No. 4 Dustin Johnson finishes in a three-way tie for 2nd or worse
-- No. 5 Justin Thomas finishes in a three-way tie for 2nd or worse
-- No. 6 Keegan Bradley finishes T2 or worse

And to reiterate, Woods needs to win for the first time in more than five years. Again, technically, he has a chance.

Actually, a crazy scenario similar to this played out in 2011 when Bill Haas won the FedEx Cup without even realizing it after his wet and wild sudden-death playoff victory at the Tour Championship. Haas entered that week at No. 25 in the standings and also needed a laundry list of things to happen (The points system has been changed slightly since to reward the higher-ranked players) that was so long he famously needed to be informed that he won both prizes at the trophy ceremony.

That certainly won't be the case for any of the golfers in the top five of the FedEx Cup standings entering this week. Those players (DeChambeau, Rose, Finau, Johnson and Thomas) all automatically win the FedEx Cup with a win at East Lake. Thomas, the defending FedEx Cup champ, won last year despite Xander Schauffele winning the Tour Championship, the first time in eight years that confusing scenario presented itself.

For how each of the 30 golfers in this week's field can win the FedEx Cup, click here.

Woods won the inaugural FedEx Cup in 2007 and then after sitting out 2008 while recovering from knee surgery, he won it again in 2009 despite Phil Mickelson winning the Tour Championship. Woods remains the only two-time winner of the PGA Tour's season-long points race, and after a five year absence from the playoffs due to injuries, he's got a chance to become the first three-time winner. Again, technically.