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Scott at least entered the conversation for PGA Tour player of the year with his win at The Barclays, though that depends on the next month. Winning another FedEx Cup playoff event would give him three victories, including a major. Is that enough to trump five wins and no majors?

Then again, it was Scott who last week didn’t hesitate when asked who has had the best year in golf so far.

“Five wins? Tiger’s had the best year,” he said. “If you think winning a major is what you base success on, then if you haven’t (won), you haven’t had a great year. But winning … I’ve always based it around winning events, and I don’t think one major makes up for five tournaments.”

To see Scott swing a club is to ask why he’s not winning more often. Scott prides himself on consistency, but since his playoff win at Augusta National, he had only one serious look at winning this year until The Barclays. That was at the British Open, where he had the lead on the back nine at Muirfield until making four straight bogeys as Phil Mickelson finished off one of the great final rounds in a major to win the claret jug.

Vijay Singh hit his stride in 2004 and won nine times. Rory McIlroy took over at No. 1 last year when he won five times.

That’s where Scott needs to be. Perhaps this is a start.

“To have multiple wins on the PGA Tour is a pretty good accomplishment, I think,” Scott said. “There aren’t too many guys doing it regularly, and I’m not, either. But I’d like to. I’m trying to jump off that springboard and win more regularly, and I think I’m going about it the right way.”

One thing Scott and Woods have in common is their schedule. Neither plays a lot of tournament golf. Scott has 41 events on his world ranking ledger over the last two years while Woods has 39. That’s by design. Scott is playing less and getting more out of it. The weeks at his home in the Bahamas are spent on quality practice.

It’s working. He’s the Masters champion. He’s No. 2 in the world. He is playing the best golf of his career.

“It’s interesting,” Scott said. “I felt like earlier in my career, I gave myself a lot more chances to win tournaments because I played a lot more. The last couple of years, my focus shifted a bit and I changed my schedule and played a lot less tournaments. So I think I’ve got less opportunity to win. I’ve focused on the bigger tournaments, which are not easy to win _ not that any others are.

“Kind of developed my game into being more consistent, performing in the big ones,” he said. “And now I’m trying to adapt that to be a winner on a more frequent basis.”

Only when that happens _ if it happens _ will the No. 1 ranking come into view.