NELSON SILVERIO: Welcome, Steve Marino, to the media center at the AT&T National. Just talk about coming back to Congressional. I know you've got family and friends in the area. Just talk about that and maybe how you're feeling.
STEVE MARINO: Right. It's always real exciting for me to come back here and play at this tournament, growing up around here. It means a lot to have my friends and my family be able to come out and watch me play. I kind of mark this tournament down on my calendar every year, and it's something I really look forward to.
Q. What was the experience like coming back at the U.S. Open after you had been away for a long time??
STEVE MARINO: Yeah, I think so. I didn't play well. I was disappointed because I felt like I was playing well in my practice rounds prior to the tournament, but being out for so long and coming back and playing one of the hardest golf courses in the world, in hindsight maybe I wasn't ready for that kind of a test.
But you know, I really enjoyed myself. I thought they had the golf course set up great. It was out there if you played well. I just drove it in the rough too many times and had some bad breaks and didn't putt well.
But being out for four months, I figured it might take a couple events to knock some of the rust off. I feel like I'm coming around. I'm starting to play pretty well again.
Q. Did you hold up physically okay??
STEVE MARINO: I did, yeah. I feel pretty good.
Q. What are your expectations golf� wise for this week??
STEVE MARINO: I expect to go out there and hopefully play well. You know, I've been working hard on my game, and this will be, I think, my third tournament back. So hopefully I've knocked most of the rust off, and I'm really looking forward to it and excited about the week. I think I just need to get one solid round under my belt, I think, and then I think I can start rolling a little bit.
Q. Were you due back earlier and you had complications or something? The injury seemed to take a long time compared to what I thought your timeline would be.
STEVE MARINO: Right. Well, originally I had a torn meniscus and I had surgery done last October, and I thought I was recovering fine from it. Then I went out to Hawai'i to play the Sony Open, and I played nine holes of the pro� am, and it was killing me, and I couldn't even squat down to read my putts. I pulled my pant leg up, and my knee was just really swollen, a lot of fluid in it. So I did a lot of ice and a lot of therapy with the PT guys out here for that week and the next two following weeks, and it just wasn't getting any better.
You know, at first I thought I was going to miss a couple weeks and be back, but I ended up having a bone contusion on the tip of my tibia and my femur, and I had this thing called avascular necrosis where there was no blood flow to the injured area, so it wasn't healing, so basically my bone was dying, and they wanted me to just stay off it, non� weight bearing stuff. I did hyperbaric chamber treatment, they gave me a bone stimulator and just some rehab and therapy, and it was just one of those things where it took a lot of time for it to heal and for me to be able to get back and walk right.
The main thing was that I couldn't walk without pain for nine holes, let alone 72 holes. I knew probably the first month or so into it that it was going to be a long process.
Q. Were things not done right in the surgery??
STEVE MARINO: No, the surgery, everything went fine. It's just one of those freak things. The doctor said that sometimes a bone contusion is usually caused by an impact type injury. Football players get them like a helmet to the knee or something like that. But sometimes people just get them when there's really no explanation for it.
And as far as the necrosis, I guess some people get that and some people don't. I have just� � I just happened to be one of those unlucky people that have it.
Q. Did you ever play here as a kid??
STEVE MARINO: You know, a couple times, not a lot. My first real experience with this course was here at the AT&T National.
Q. I know you're kind of an active guy. What did you do when you couldn't walk? What was your general routine?
STEVE MARINO: My routine was I did hyperbaric chamber treatment three times a week. I was going at 7:00 a.m., and then after that I could go to therapy to try to keep the muscles around the knee somewhat active and strong. And then I would just go home and use my bone stimulator, and I did a lot of stretch therapy to try to maintain my flexibility.
But other than that, they wanted me to pretty much stay off it. Every now and then I'd try to go out and play golf and hit balls, and I'd get out there and I'd be hobbling around and realized it just wasn't worth it. They wouldn't even let me go out on my boat and go fish. So it was pretty boring there for a couple months.
I watched a lot of TV. I think I've seen every movie that's ever been made. But yeah, it was just a lot of downtime.
Q. How is the knee? Is there any pain? Is there still rehab to do on it?
STEVE MARINO: No, there's not really much pain. Honestly, it doesn't feel like my other knee. I don't know if it ever will. But as far as the pain goes, it's not painful. I'm not limping. I made it through 36 holes of the U.S. Open qualifier, all those rounds at Olympic with all those hills without really any significant pain, so that's definitely a positive.
Q. What do you mean by it doesn't feel like the other one??
STEVE MARINO: I mean, it just doesn't feel like my other knee. You know what I mean? You can tell� � I can just tell that it's not� � maybe it's because it's maybe not quite as strong as the other one with all the downtime. But I think over time I'll get it reconditioned to the point where it feels normal.
Q. What is this week like for you with friends and family and stuff? Are there any people or things you're looking forward to seeing, and will there be anyone in the gallery with pink shorts on this week?
STEVE MARINO: You know, it can be kind of crazy. I try to distance myself from it a little bit. I don't stay at home. My caddie's uncle lives about two minutes from here, so I'm staying there to avoid all the traffic and stuff. I'm excited to have a bunch of my friends from high school and college to come out and watch, especially my family will get to see me come play. It's just a fun week and a special week to be out there playing in an event like this and have all your friends and family supporting you.
Q. Do you remember that from '07, everybody thought your gallery was among the rowdiest??
STEVE MARINO: I do, I do. I think some of them might have matured a little bit over the last couple years, so I think it might be a little bit tamer. And then also that year I think I had the first� round lead, so everybody was real excited. But they were pretty rowdy, yes, I do remember that.
NELSON SILVERIO: Steve Marino, thank you.