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Jon Rahm predicted this year’s Masters Champions Dinner could be “a little tense” as professional golf continues to be divided by the power struggle between the PGA Tour and LIV Golf.

Former green jacket winners including Dustin Johnson, Sergio Garcia, Patrick Reed and Phil Mickelson have joined the Saudi-backed breakaway tour.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the divide are the likes of Tiger Woods and Fred Couples, who has openly derided Mickelson’s choice.

At the Sentry Tournament of Champions, Rahm explained why he wishes he could be in the room for the annual pre-Masters feast.

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“I think the Masters Champions Dinner’s going to be a little tense compared to how it’s been in the past,” Rahm told reporters. “I keep thinking about it because I wish I could be there and just be able to see how things work out. Too bad the US Open doesn’t have one of them.

“But I think it’s an exciting year. Obviously we’re all curious about how it’s going to work out, but we’re all excited to see how it’s going to unfold and how it’s going to play out for everybody.”

A key battle ground in the current wrangle is the Ryder Cup ahead of this year’s event in Rome. As it stands American LIV players are unable to earn points towards qualification while their European counterparts are, pending a decision in their courtroom battle to be allowed to participate on the DP World Tour.

“There’s some people that are going to have to make some tough choices,” Rahm added. “I hope the PGA of America and European Tour make a decision together. I don’t think it would be smart to have one team allowing LIV players and one not to.

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“Even if they decide not to on that side, I think it’s going to have an opportunity for a lot of great young players to show up and have the chance in Europe, right? It’s just going to be an opportunity for all of them. We saw a younger US team at the last Ryder Cup and they did what they did.”

While some relationships have reportedly broken down as players come down on opposing sides of the divide, Rahm has no plans to let it affect his relationships with his colleagues.

“In my mind, I respect their choice and the ones I was friends with before I’m still going to be friends with,” he added. “It doesn’t change the way I’m going to operate with them. I don’t think there’s that much of a problem between players, at least in person, because if there is they can avoid each other.”

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