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January 14 2012

3:16 AM

Belly putter working for Perez

By Mike McAllister, PGATOUR.COM

HONOLULU -- Count Pat Perez as one of the converts to the belly putter.

During a trip to Cabo San Lucas six weeks ago, Perez tried one during a round and, in his words, "putted unbelievable."

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Perez
Three days later when he returned home, he had a belly putter waiting for him. Since then?

"I haven't taken it out of my hands since," Perez said.

He's feeling even better about the switch after two solid putting rounds at the Sony Open in Hawaii. Perez shot a second-round 3-under 67 to go with his opening 66, putting him at 7 under and firmly among the contenders going into the weekend at Waialae.

Perez has been battling a bulging disc in his back that seems to be flaring up since he started getting back to work and walking more.

"It's just tight," Perez said. "I can't get it to loosen up. Between the flight and the new bed and all that stuff, I guess -- hopefully it disappears. But it probably won't because the disc is bulged."

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