What they said: Pat Pereztext sizeFebruary 17, 2012
PGA TOUR staff
MORE INTERVIEWS: Northern Trust Open transcript archive
MARK STEVENS: We'd like to welcome Pat Perez. You got to 5-under today. You're one off the lead going into the weekend. If you want to talk about your round and then we'll have a few questions.
PAT PEREZ: Yeah, it was good. I birdied 1. Basically overall just putted pretty well. I birdied 1 and -- what did I do, birdied -- I don't even know what I birdied.
Q. 5 and 6.
PAT PEREZ: What else did I birdie? 1, 13, 11 -- 13 and 18, yeah. Pretty good holes.
MARK STEVENS: Putting was your highlight of the day?
PAT PEREZ: Yeah, I didn't hit it like you'd think I would. I didn't drive it all that great. I just scrambled well. I put myself in the right places to make par or birdie.
Q. What shots do you remember the most out of those birdie holes? You're having trouble remembering the birdies. Do you have any particular shots?
PAT PEREZ: Yeah, 18 I was in the rough, and I had to hit -- I hit a high cut 6-iron, and it came out just perfect, and it was about 12 feet. I made that one.
I hit a good wedge shot on 11 for birdie. I don't remember much else. I can't remember the holes I birdied. 5 and 6? What is 5? Oh, I hit a great iron there. Actually, no, that wasn't a good one. That was a wedge. That wasn't that good.
But 6 was a good one. 6 was 5-iron, pin was back, kind of went up the hill and came back about three feet. That was nice.
Q. So you're going to have to watch this round again to see what you did??
PAT PEREZ: No. We'll see. It won't be on TV, so won't be able to see anything.
Q. How different were conditions today and yesterday??
PAT PEREZ: Not even comparable. Not even comparable. Yesterday was 40 and blowing 50 miles an hour at 6:00 in the morning. Today was warm and not much wind at all.
Q. How did that change your approach, or did it??
PAT PEREZ: Well, you're not freezing to death and it's not blowing 40, you think you can score pretty well.
Q. Last time you and Phil went head-to-head??
PAT PEREZ: Match Play three years ago. I lost.
Q. Looking forward to it??
PAT PEREZ: Yeah. I mean, I'm not playing him. You know, obviously he's playing well, and I'm going to have to play awful well to beat him this weekend. I'm not worried about him. It'll be fun to play with him, but you know, I know that I have to play well out there to beat everybody else, as well.
Q. Did you feel this round coming? Have you been feeling like you're playing well enough to score?
PAT PEREZ: Yeah. I haven't missed a cut yet. I've made all six on the West Coast. I had a lot of good rounds. I've played well. I'm 29th in the FedEx, so I've played pretty well. I've putted great. Ever since changing to the belly putter has changed everything for me. Yeah, I thought if I could just hit it somewhat decent, if I could give myself some looks with that putter, I'd make some.
Q. Can you tell us a little more of the background of the belly putter? Were you resistant to go to it? What led to it?
PAT PEREZ: I was. Tommy Armour was all over me for a year to change, and I didn't want to try it. You know, I've tried some before, but I didn't really like it. I didn't get the right one. We went down to Cabo, and he was down there with it, and he was all over me on it. You know, it was just incredible how the ball rolled and how -- I was just making everything. I said, well, I'll try it. This was in the beginning of October, so I had another two months still.
So I gave it all the way through November, and I said, I'm just going to stick with it. It's been great.
Q. Is there a stigma? Why did you resist it? What in your mind says I don't want to go to that?
PAT PEREZ: Nothing really. I thought I could putt with a short putter. I thought it would take me too long to get used to a belly putter. It was really nothing that stopped me from doing it, but once I got comfortable with it, it was great.
MARK STEVENS: Thanks a lot, Pat.