What they said: Hunter Mahantext sizeMarch 25, 2011
PGA TOUR staff
MORE INTERVIEWS: Arnold Palmer Invitational transcript archive
Q. 38 on the front, 31 on the back, what exactly switched today??
HUNTER MAHAN: Well, I just felt better on my swing. That was a good drive on 10, I just smoked it. And then hit a wedge up there to about a foot and got some momentum going and birdied the next couple of holes.
Q. Your caddie said it's one of the first times he's seen you turn it on after struggling early. Is that a maturing process on the PGA TOUR for you??
HUNTER MAHAN: Sure, nine holes isn't the whole round. I still have nine lowest and I have to stay focused on that. I know what to do and I know what the flaw is and how to fix it, and I have to trust that.
Q. After watching the front nine, I mean, a lot of people watching would think to themselves, not much going on out there. But I talked to your caddie and he was saying, nothing was really wrong, it just wasn't in sync. But then you hit the tee shot on No. 10 and thought, there it is??
HUNTER MAHAN: Exactly. I wasn't far off. I actually just missed a couple of short putts. If I make those, then I'm even for the front nine, but it wasn't far off and I knew that. I hit two great shots on 10.
Q. Tell me about the shot on 11 --
HUNTER MAHAN: I just had a great feeling about the put, I knew exactly what it was going to do and hit it really solid. It felt good.
Q. And now you have to tell me about that second is shot on 18, when that was in the air, were you thinking to yourself --
HUNTER MAHAN: The trajectory, the flight -- it was good. I knew once it landed and kind of hit the pin, was a little concerned but just stopped right there.
Q. What was it that you were think to go yourself after the front nine going into the back with the swing??
HUNTER MAHAN: Be patient. I felt great yesterday. I know exactly what the problem is, and just trust it and let it go.
Q. Quite a day, 38-31, get your comments on the round??
HUNTER MAHAN: Yeah, a tale of two nines. The front nine, couldn't get any sort of rhythm. Really just came out and missed a couple of short putts but I felt like they were good putts and I didn't feel like the swing was too far away. On 10 hit just a great drive and a wedge to a foot and changed the tide.
Q. What went well for you that you would like to replicate tomorrow??
HUNTER MAHAN: Well, mentally I was good today. Physically, the game is going to go up-and-down. You're never going to hit it perfect and you're never going to putt perfect but you can mentally be good every single day and that can save you a couple of shots a round. I felt that helped me stay within the round.
Q. When you finish the front nine with a 38, what do you have to do to yourself between that first nine and the 10th tee??
HUNTER MAHAN: I have to trust everything. My swing didn't go anywhere. My game didn't go anywhere. It didn't feel good. It didn't feel like -- it just didn't feel good, but it can change that quickly. So I knew that and I just had to trust that it was going to happen.
Q. You were in the mix at Pebble and the Cadillac Championship; do you feel like one of the hottest players on the planet right now??
HUNTER MAHAN: No, because I don't want to think that, because I still have to keep working, every day. I feel good about my game. I'm trusting it. I feel great about it, but I feel like you have to prove yourself every week and that's what I'm trying to do. I feel like I'm not trying to ride any tides or anything. I feel like I have to keep working. I still have holes in my game.
Q. How much would it mean to you being here winning Arnold's event??
HUNTER MAHAN: It would mean a lot. This is one of those tournaments that every player wants to win. Him presenting me with the trophy would be a great feeling.