Travelers Championship interview: Bubba WatsonJune 21, 2013
MORE INTERVIEWS: Travelers Championship transcript archive
THE MODERATOR: All right. We will go ahead and get started. Bubba Watson, thanks for joining us after a 3 under 67 in round two of the Travelers Championship after your 63 yesterday. You obviously with your win in 2010 you, I think, finished tied for second last year and tied for sixth in '08. So obviously this is a place near and dear to you. Just some comments on what it is about this place that you like so much.
BUBBA WATSON: You know, the tee shots and everything set up well for me. I like the way they look. There's about two tee shots on the whole golf course that really are tough for me, but other than that, the golf course sets up well for me. Generous fairways. It's normally soft here because of the rains, so makes the fairways seem wider.
The greens are getting a little firmer right now because there's no rain. But I love coming here. Everybody treats us great here. The fans are good. They understand the game of golf, and the sponsor, Travelers really runs a great tournament.
THE MODERATOR: Okay. With that we will open it up and take some questions.
Q. Bubba, I know you said you weren't 100 percent starting out the day and you kind of dialed it back, but Hunter was in here yesterday talking about how aggressive he felt like he could be from the tee. Seems like that's what suits you on this golf course.
BUBBA WATSON: Yeah. This golf course, the golf course has generous fairways, has some tight tee shots, but the generous fairways, and you're having short irons into a lot of the holes, and it's playable from the rough, unlike last week, not really playable. This week you can play from the rough, so the rough doesn't scare anybody.
Q. Almost everybody that comes in here, we ask them how they've recovered mentally from the U. S. Open. Do you have any long term kind of like observations on the best way to recover the week after a U. S. Open when you come here?
BUBBA WATSON: Well, as soon as I putted out on Sunday, I was done with it. So I'm just looking forward to this tournament. It's a new tournament.
You know, you can start all over. It's the one sport we start all over. You can miss every cut and win one tournament and you think you've had a good year. So it's a brand new tournament; fresh start. Take Monday off and then get ready on Tuesday. So I started practicing on Tuesday.
You know, we're all so called athletes. So we can all recover just like that. So it's not that big a deal. Just another golf tournament, with higher rough obviously.
Q. Sorry you got rained out for the Yankees game. Were you nervous at all, though?
BUBBA WATSON: No. What would I be nervous about? Just throw out a ball.
Q. Putting it in the dirt.
BUBBA WATSON: I played baseball a little bit. I can get it from the mound to the home plate there.
Q. Did you practice?
BUBBA WATSON: No. What would I practice for? It's just a baseball. Again, I said we were athletes. (Laughs). I've thrown out seven first pitches, so it's not like it's a big deal. Played baseball 15 years, so I figured I can get it over home plate.
BUBBA WATSON: I was one of the best. (Laughs). My dad wanted me to be a left handed pitcher, wanted me to play for the Yankees one day, but I chose golf instead of baseball. He was upset for a couple of months, but then he got over it when I won for the first time.
So no, I was decent at it. I was good at all sports. I just chose golf because it was an individual sport. I don't like it when the team plays bad. I'm not a team guy.
Q. Statistically you've actually had a better year this year than you have last year. You obviously haven't won this year yet. I think you've had four Top 10s.
BUBBA WATSON: Three. No big deal.
Q. How fine a line is that between last year and this year in terms of the results?
BUBBA WATSON: Well, it's funny, last year if I don't hit the hook shot and I don't win, I don't have a win all year, even though it was my best year on TOUR.
You know, year before I had two wins. Year before I had one win here. Golf's that way. You know, you can watch somebody play well, have a three putt, have a bad divot, just stops their momentum on a golf tournament. And then you win.
Like I said, though, you can miss every cut, and the media and your friends look at you, you won one tournament, but you missed all your cuts, they still think you had a great year, even though in your head you're like I missed so many cuts.
So I'm looking at it trying to be more consistent. Had a lot more Top 25s over the last few years, a lot of less cuts. So I'm looking at it that way. I can't look at it as if I'm No. 1 on the Money List or if I've had wins or this or that. I'm looking at consistency, always having my name up there. My goal is always the Top 25.
Q. I know you're good friends with Tim Tebow. What are your thoughts about Tim connecting with the Patriots?
BUBBA WATSON: I think it's good. Maybe he'll start over Tom Brady. (Laughs). I just had to say that. Sorry, Tim. No, I think it's good. You know, I think when you look at Tim as a man, you're looking at a leader, a role model, gracious in defeat, gracious in winning. I think you can learn a lot from him. I think the locker room gets stronger with a guy like Tim, and I think that's what teams are looking at. They're looking at what he can do for the team.
Obviously he's got the drive to play any position. If he wanted to kick field goals, he probably could. He'd figure out a way to do it. But that's the main thing is a lot of locker room guys, we've heard that where there's great talents, but they're not really locker room guys. And Tim's going to be the best locker room guy there is always, and then on top of that he's going to always have the best attitude and positive attitude on the field, cheer people up when they're struggling a little bit.
BUBBA WATSON: Maybe. Maybe not. Probably not, though. More fun to spend time with the little one.
BUBBA WATSON: Best shot I hit today. Probably the little chip 8 iron I hit into 16. Hit it to about two feet right after missing a birdie putt on 15, then stepped up there and hit a little cut, 8 iron to about two feet and made it for birdie.
THE MODERATOR: All right. Anybody else?
Q. Do you do anything different on Friday when you're in the lead in terms of maybe looking at the leaderboard or anything different you'll do tonight?
BUBBA WATSON: No. Tonight I got a baby sitter, so I'm going to go out on a date night with my wife. Not going to practice when I get done talking to you guys, just going to kind of relax and have fun and enjoy my son and hopefully have a good date night with my wife tonight and just come back ready to play tomorrow. I gotta look at this as it's a game of golf, but it's fun. It's something I love to do. No pressure. I made the cut. So I'm getting paid I guess.
THE MODERATOR: All right. Bubba, we appreciate ...
Q. Bubba, could you describe what makes for a good player caddie relationship and maybe some things that a caddie can do during a round in front of a large gallery at a high profile event to keep the player even keeled emotionally?
BUBBA WATSON: You know, just every player is different. For me I talk about random stuff on the golf course. I don't really talk about golf. I talk about my shot right when I'm about to hit.
But you know, like my caddie, good numbers, I gotta trust him. I trust he knows how to add and subtract. You know, we're both Christians. We both believe in the same thing. So we can bounce off life ideas, life difficulties with each other while we're out there for five, six hours. And so that's really what I'm looking for in a caddie, somebody that believes the same thing I'm believing. And somebody I can trust, somebody I know can add and subtract. And he's real cheap. So that's the best part. (Laughs).
So yeah, just always differs on who you are. Some guys like a lot of numbers. I want one number. I want what the pin is and attack from there. A lot of guys want front, what it is to carry bunkers, what it is to the back of the green. So it just depends on what you want. Each caddie is going to mold to you because they want to get paid, too.
THE MODERATOR: Okay. Bubba, best of luck this weekend.