Dick's Sporting Goods Open interview: Kenny Perry

August 15, 2013

PHIL STAMBAUGH: We're joined by Kenny Perry this morning in the interview room. Kenny, right now two big major victories this summer have put you at the top of the Charles Schwab Cup list and you've got four straight Top 10s coming into this week at Dick's Sporting Goods Open. You tied for third here in 2012, very familiar with the golf course. A few thoughts about coming back to Endicott.

KENNY PERRY: I love coming back here. When Alex was here and ran the BC Open, played many a rounds here from the PGA TOUR. Then it's pretty awesome to come back and play the Champions Tour. The course is definitely maturing, it's definitely a great old course. John does a great job, tournament director, running this tournament and everybody here just makes us feel very welcomed and I think we all really appreciate that. Just love coming here. No matter how you play, it's just a great event and they do a wonderful job here.

PHIL STAMBAUGH: You've got a pretty comfortable lead in the Schwab Cup right now. Have you thought about that and what it would mean to win that?

KENNY PERRY: Well, I mean, you know, we still I think I looked at my schedule, we're playing 11 of the next 14 weeks, something like that, so this is a big run we've got going. I don't think any lead's comfortable but it's always nice to have a lead. So my focus is definitely on winning the Cup and I'm going to play pretty much every event from here on out except for Pebble Beach, The First Tee, because my daughter's getting married on the 28th in Dallas, Texas, at TPC Las Colinas, so we've got a big wedding planned that week. I didn't choose the date, she chose it, so I'm out that week. Other than that, I plan to play everything from here on out so I'm going to push hard and hopefully I can get hot again like I did a few weeks ago and carry on and make it tough for the guys to catch me.

Q. Kenny, in your quest, I guess if that's the word you want to use that you've been playing so well, what's been working so well for you this season?

KENNY PERRY: It's always been my putter. Basically I live and die with the putter. Those two weeks I putted outstanding. It's funny, I'm a very streaky player, always have been my whole career. When I start winning, I usually win two or three at a time like I did 2008. I was 48 years old, I won three times in the summer of 2008, went on to the Ryder Cup team, won a couple times in 2009 on the PGA TOUR, and I won three times in 2003. It's just funny how when I get going and I get in spurts, I shoot really low scores and it just always kind of dictates, my putter for whatever reason will wake up for a week or two here or there and the hole gets as big as a trash can and I make everything. As they say, you know, I'm shooting 63s and 4s and the game is really easy, but in general the game's pretty tough for me. I still drive it pretty good and hit it okay, but it's always been my short game that's always pretty much held me back and it's been hanging in there this year so far.

Q. How do these greens suit your eye?

KENNY PERRY: Great. This golf course is in the best shape I've ever seen it. It is in better shape now than it was when we played the TOUR events here. The green complexes, you've got to kind of understand them a little bit out here, you've got to have some experiences. I don't know how much faster they're going to make them, but I played a practice round on Tuesday and I thought the speed was great. Tomorrow they'll get even faster and they're holding everything we fire at it, so the scores are going to be good. The guys who drive it this is a driver's golf course to me in my opinion. It's more of a driver's golf course than a putter's. Obviously you've got to putt great, too, but here it's more important to hit the driver well because every hole's tree lined and tight and you don't want to be punching out of the trees all day to these pins and these greens, it's going to be very difficult to make lots of pars. You've got to make birdies. If I drive it well, I'll do okay this week.

Q. Could you talk a little bit about the Champions Tour? There's a lot of younger guys, you're not quite a rookie but not too far in, got rookies like Colin Montgomerie coming out, Rocco Mediate coming out. How difficult is it as opposed to 10 years ago when you had the same handful of guys winning every week to now compete week in and week out?

KENNY PERRY: I think, I told Phil this, it pretty much about ran me back to the regular TOUR. It is amazing the competition and the skill level and how low they shoot.