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Golf Talk Live - Phil Mickelson Transcript Segment 3

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PETER KESSLER
PHIL HERE'S A QUESTION SUBMITTED TO OUR WEBSITE FOR YOU TODAY. WILL YOU DO ANYTHING DIFFERENT THIS YEAR PREPARING FOR THE MAJORS THAN YOU'VE DONE IN THE PAST? YOU ARE MY PICK TO WIN THE MASTERS IN 2001. BOB BATES WOULD LIKE TO KNOW.

PHIL MICKELSON
WELL BOB COMES FROM A COOL CITY IN BALTIMORE. I'M VERY FOND OF THAT CITY THIS YEAR, BUT, IT'S AN INTERESTING QUESTION AND EACH PLAYER REALLY NEEDS TO, TO LEARN

WHAT MAKES THEM PLAY THEIR BEST AND WHAT I FOUND OUT LAST YEAR DOING SOMETHING DIFFERENT, AS OPPOSED TO TAKING THE WEEK OFF BEFORE THE MAJOR, I'VE NOW STARTED TO COMPETE THE WEEK BEFORE AND WHAT THAT HAS DONE IS, IT HAS ONLY GIVEN ME A THREE OR FOUR DAY GAP BETWEEN COMPETITIVE

ROUNDS AND WHEN I HAVE ELEVEN TO FOURTEEN DAYS BEFORE COMPETITIVE ROUNDS, WHEN I TEE UP ON THURSDAY, I DON'T QUITE FEEL COMFORTABLE YET,

ESPECIALLY IN A TOURNAMENT THAT THAT'S, THAT IS THAT BIG AND THAT I'VE BEEN LOOKING FORWARD TO FOR SO LONG AND LAST YEAR I HAD A VERY CONSISTENT YEAR IN THE MAJORS. I FINISHED IN THE TOP 16 IN ALL FOUR WHICH I FELT WAS A STEADY IMPROVEMENT. I PLAYED MUCH MORE

STEADY OR STEADIER IN THOSE MAJORS AND SO I'M GOING TO CONTINUE TO PLAY THE WEEK BEFORE. LAST YEAR I WON THE ATLANTA CLASSIC. I'LL COME BACK TO TRY TO DEFEND MY TITLE THE WEEK BEFORE AUGUSTA AND I THINK THAT THOSE COMPETITIVE ROUNDS, GIVEN

AND GIVEN THE FACT THAT THE COURSE IS VERY SIMILAR TO THE STYLE OF PLAY THAT WE'LL HAVE AT AUGUSTA, I THINK THAT THAT FOR ME IS THE BEST WAY TO PREPARE.

PETER KESSLER
A LOT OF PEOPLE THINK OF YOU AS THE BEST PICKER OF WHAT'S GOING TO HAPPEN IN SPORTS IN THE COUNTRY RIGHT NOW BASED ON PICKING THE BALTIMORE RAVENS DURING THE EXHIBITION SEASON LAST YEAR AND PUTTING IT IN PRINT ON YOUR WEBSITE. WHAT TIP DO YOU HAVE FOR US THIS YEAR, PHIL?

PHIL MICKELSON
WELL, THAT WAS UH, I LOVE FOOTBALL, I LOVE STUDYING IT AND WATCHING ALL THE TRADES AND THE OFF SEASON IS A FUN TIME SEEING WHO'S GOING WHERE AND SO FORTH AND I JUST KIND OF SAW WHAT, I SAW BACK THEN WHAT BALTIMORE WAS DOING. THEY WERE

KIND OF BECOMING THE ANTI-RAMS. THE RAMS HAD THE BEST OFFENSE. THEY WERE GOING TO GO AT IT WITH THE BEST DEFENSE AND SO THAT KIND OF GAVE ME THE IDEA THAT, THAT THEY MAY DO IT. I

DON'T REALLY KNOW TOO MUCH ABOUT A LOT OF OTHER SPORTS. FOOTBALL IS KIND OF MY FAVORITE AS FAR AS THE FUTURE, I'M WAITING TO SEE THE NEXT, SOME OF THE OFF SEASON TRANSACTIONS BETWEEN THREE OR FOUR TEAMS TO SEE WHICH WAY I LIKE AND OBVIOUSLY THE NCAA

TOURNAMENT THIS WEEK IS UH, IT SEEMS TO ME TO BE A PRETTY OBVIOUS PICK BECAUSE DUKE IS JUST SO STRONG

ATHLETICALLY AND SO STRONG COACHING THAT MENTALLY AND
PHYSICALLY THEY'RE GOING TO BE PREPARED. IT WILL BE REALLY TOUGH TO GET PAST THEM.

PETER KESSLER
WELL BACK TO THE MAJORS A LITTLE BIT, OR AT LEAST A REFERENCE TO THEM AND THE NAME OF BOBBY JONES. WHAT DID IT MEAN TO YOU TO WIN IT, THE TOUR CHAMPIONSHIP AT EASTLAKE WHERE BOBBY JONES LEARNED TO PLAY HIS GOLF?

PHIL MICKELSON
WELL THE REASON WHY IT WAS SO SPECIAL TO ME IS, BECAUSE, AS A PLAYER, I LOVE TO BECOME A PART OF THE HISTORY OF THE GAME AND WHEN I PLAYED

EASTLAKE I FELT LIKE I BECAME A, A PART OF THE HISTORY THAT WAS WHAT EASTLAKE IS ALL ABOUT, AND WHEN I READ BOBBY JONES' BOOKS AND HE TALKS ABOUT THE ROUNDS THAT HE PLAYED THERE AND THE FIRST TIME HE BROKE 70 AND THE FIRST TIME HE BROKE PAR AND

NOW I UNDERSTAND THE HOLES THAT HE WAS TALKING ABOUT AND SO IT GIVES ME A MUCH GREATER SENSE OF HISTORY, AND SO, WINNING THAT TOURNAMENT, ALTHOUGH IT'S A HUGE TOURNAMENT ON TOUR, THE GREATEST SATISFACTION THAT I GOT OUT OF THAT WAS BECOMING A PART OF THE HISTORY OF EASTLAKE.

PETER KESSLER
YOU'VE BEEN STARTING TO DABBLE IN GOLF COURSE DESIGN. YOUR NEW GOLF COURSE, I BELIEVE, OPENED UP JUST LAST MONTH. TELL US A LITTLE BIT ABOUT YOUR INTEREST IN IT AND HOW MUCH YOU EXPECT TO DO TO GO FORWARD, COURSE DESIGN.

PHIL MICKELSON
WELL, I'M NOT GOING TO DO TOO MUCH BECAUSE FOR THE NEXT TEN YEARS I'VE COMMITTED MYSELF TO PLAYING THE BEST THAT I CAN AND WORKING ON MY GAME AND IT TAKES TOO MUCH TIME TO DO IT RIGHT, I FEEL, AND SO, I REALLY ENJOYED DOING THIS FIRST ONE AND

EVERYTHING HAD TO BE RIGHT. I HAD BEEN TURNING IT DOWN AND TURNING IT DOWN. DOZENS OF CHANCES, BUT BECAUSE I JUST WANTED THE RIGHT PROJECT TO DO THE FIRST ONE. IF THE FIRST ONE'S NOT RIGHT IT DOESN'T GET ANY BETTER. YOU CAN'T GET THE TOP

PROJECTS AND SO THE FIRST COURSE WAS, WAS PERFECT. IT WAS CORE GOLF. IT WASN'T A DEVELOPMENT. IT WAS ON A BEAUTIFUL SIGHT. IT WAS IN SCOTTSDALE. THE PEOPLE THAT I WAS INVOLVED WITH AT GRAY HAWK DID THIS

PROJECT AND IT JUST WORKED OUT GREAT, SO I'M, I'M REALLY EXCITED ABOUT THE WAY IT TURNED OUT. I THINK THAT TEN YEARS FROM NOW I MAY LOOK AT DOING A LITTLE BIT MORE, BUT RIGHT NOW I MAYBE WILL DO JUST ONE EVERY, EVERY TWO YEARS.

PETER KESSLER
HOW DIFFERENT ARE YOUR GOLF DREAMS, AT THE AGE OF 30 THEN THEY WERE SAY AT THE AGE OF 20?

PHIL MICKELSON
THEY'RE NOT REALLY THAT DIFFERENT. I FEEL LIKE A PLAYER'S CAREER IS DEFINED BY THE TIME HE'S ABOUT 40. WHEN HE'S 40, PEOPLE LOOK AT HIM THE SAME WHETHER HE WINS MORE TOURNAMENTS OR NOT, AND SO I FEEL LIKE FOR THE NEXT

TEN YEARS THAT WILL BE HOW MY CAREER WILL BE THOUGHT OF AND CERTAINLY THE FIRST TEN, FROM 20 TO 30 ARE IMPORTANT BUT I REALLY FEEL LIKE I'M TO THE POINT RIGHT NOW WHERE THIS

IS MY BEST OPPORTUNITY TO PLAY MY BEST. THIS IS AS GOOD AS I CAN POSSIBLY PLAY, ESPECIALLY THE 20 TO 30 YEAR BRACKET. I WAS NOT AS FUNDAMENTALLY SOUND AS WE HAD DISCUSSED EARLIER. I FEEL LIKE NOW I'M

REACHING A POINT WHERE I CAN BE CONSISTENT WEEK IN AND WEEK OUT AND I'M REALLY EXCITED ABOUT WHAT THE NEXT FEW YEARS BRING.

PETER KESSLER
LET'S CHECK IN WITH ONE OF OUR VIEWERS. IT'S CHRIS FROM ONTARIO WHO I THINK WANTS TO STAY RIGHT ALONG THAT SAME LINE. GO AHEAD CHRIS. HE'S RIGHT OVER HERE, PHIL, TO YOUR, TO YOUR LEFT.

CHRIS, CALLER FROM ONTARIO (MALE):
HI MR. MICKELSON.

PHIL MICKELSON
HI CHRIS. HOW ARE YOU?

CHRIS, CALLER FROM ONTARIO (MALE):
VERY GOOD. GREAT PLAYING ON THE WEEKEND. IT WAS VERY EXCITING.

PHIL MICKELSON
THANK YOU.

CHRIS, CALLER FROM ONTARIO (MALE):
IT WAS A GREAT TOURNAMENT. I HOPE YOU GET TIGER THIS WEEK.

PHIL MICKELSON
WELL I'LL BE TRYING.

CHRIS, CALLER FROM ONTARIO (MALE):
I JUST WANT TO ASK YOU A QUESTION ABOUT THE MAJORS. WHAT MAJOR DO YOU THINK BEST SUITS YOUR GAME?

PHIL MICKELSON
WELL, I THINK FOR ME PERSONALLY THE MASTERS BEST SUITS MY GAME FOR THE SIMPLE REASON THAT THE SHORT GAME IS AN INTEGRAL PART OF IT AND I FEEL LIKE, WITHOUT THERE BEING ROUGH I CAN REALLY TAKE ADVANTAGE OF MY UP AND DOWN ABILITY AND ALSO I THINK LENGTH

IS A BIG FACTOR THERE AND SO BECAUSE OF THAT, IT, THERE'S A SELECT TEN OR FIFTEEN GUYS THAT HAVE A DISTINCT ADVANTAGE AND I THINK THAT, BECAUSE OF THAT I HAVE A GOOD OPPORTUNITY THERE. NOW CERTAINLY THE U.S. OPEN IS,

I PLAYED WELL IN IN '99 AT PINEHURST BUT THE REASON I PLAYED WELL THERE WAS THEY SHAVED AROUND THE GREENS AND BROUGHT ALL ASPECTS OF THE GAME BACK INTO PLAY AS OPPOSED TO JUST DRIVING AND HITTING GREENS.

PETER KESSLER
WE'LL TAKE A BREAK. BE RIGHT BACK WITH PHIL MICKELSON. DON'T GO AWAY.

(MUSIC)

(BREAK)

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