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DEUTSCHE BANK CHAMPIONSHIP MEDIA DAY
July 28, 2014
MIKE ANTOLINI:¬† Good morning.¬† Thank you all for coming out.¬† I'm Mike Antolini, championship director for the Deutsch Bank Championship.¬† I'm very excited to be celebrating the 12th Deutsch Bank Championship today.¬† Very fortunate to have a committed title sponsor in Deutsche Bank and also presenting sponsor in EMC, both of which have been with this event since the beginning in 2003.
We're also proud to have the support of our founding sponsors, State Street, the Wall Street Journal, Gulf Oil and PBS radio.¬† This event would not be possible without the more than 1500 volunteers who dedicate their time and effort to the success of the event.¬† We're very proud to have our volunteer chair, Danielle Picard with us today representing the Blue Crew.¬† Danielle, thank you for all your work.
I'd also like to acknowledge the town of Norton and Town Manager, Michael Yunits, for all their support here in the local community, and also the Town of Mansfield and its Town Manager Bill Ross.¬† Both townships are very integral to the success of the championship and we're grateful for your support.¬† Thank you so much Michael.
We are fortunate to have a great host site partner here in TPC Boston.¬† We're very grateful for the members and the membership here, and they really make it easy for us.¬† Thanks to their great staff and team, which is led by General Manager, Dan Waslewski, and Superintendent, Tom Brodeur, who are both here with us.¬† They not only prepare a championship course and facility for the DBC, but really throughout the year.¬† So thanks to you and your team for all your efforts.
As most of you know, the Tiger Woods Foundation has been the lead charitable beneficiary of the Deutsche Bank Championship since its inception.¬† This is our second year, however, serving as host organization and running and managing the event.¬† We couldn't be happier with our expanded role with this event.¬† As we all know Deutsche Bank Championship, second leg of the FedExCup playoffs, we're very excited again to welcome the top 100 PGA players, in the FedExCup standings this Labor Day weekend to TPC Boston.¬† We expect another tremendous field of competitors this year.¬† The word No.1 Adam Scott, all four current major champions, Bubba Watson, Rory McIlroy, Jason Dufner, and of course Martin Kaymer who won the U.S. Open.¬† Reigning FedExCup champion and last year's Deutsche Bank Championship winner, Henrik Stenson, will be back with us we expect, of course.¬† 21 year old young gun Jordan Spieth, he just turned 21 yesterday, can you believe it.¬† And New England's own, Keegan Bradley, who I know is a fan favorite out here at the TPC.¬† We're very excited to have Keegan join us this Labor Day.¬† And then also past TPC champions, including Phil Mickelson and Charley Hoffman and Vijay Singh.¬† These players really represent only a snapshot of the powerhouse field that we expect this year.¬† Very excited for our field again this year.
No surprise that we expect great crowds.¬† Just mentioned all the fields, but really thanks to the overwhelming amount of support that we received from the Boston, Providence and greater New England communities at‑large.¬† It's quite impressive and it means a lot to see the crowds come out.¬† Some ticket packages are already sold out.¬† So we hope and encourage those who don't have tickets yet to act fast.
And additionally we have several exciting events returning this year.¬† We'll also pay tribute to our armed forces.¬† And this really leads me to our next speaker.¬† A man who is not only committed to golf but more so to the communities that are important to he and Deutsche Bank.¬† When I first met Jacques Brand, I was immediately impressed with his desire to find new ways to elevate it this championship.¬† He's proud of the partnership that this event has played with the Tiger Woods Foundation and shared with Deutsche Bank Championship throughout the years.
As an active board member with the YMCA, the Jewish Museum, and chairman of the Deutsche Bank Championship Foundation, Jacques knows how to make a difference.¬† He's a very strong supporter of all that this championship does for the community, including the estimated economic impact of more than $650 million since its inception in 2003.
Now to speak a bit about the Deutsche Bank Championship role as the title sponsor and its support of the military, please welcome tournament host and Deutsch Bank's CEO of North America, Jacques Brand.
JACQUES BRAND:¬† Now you know what's going to make Mike such a great tournament director in his first year.¬† That was very, very impressive.¬† He's already having a very, very positive impact on the tournament.
So thanks to all of you for joining us here today at the TPC.¬† We will hear in a moment from one of the best golfers in the world, Tiger Woods.¬† And by virtue of what you're wearing, I know that you're all eager to get out on to the golf course and hopefully the weather will hold.
I know that I'm eager to get out there, although not with my usual foursome, which I couldn't manage to convince any one of them to take off of work today.¬† But last year I did have the opportunity to play what is an incredible course, thanks to you, with one of the world's greatest golf players, Rory McIlroy.¬† Who was the prior year's defending champion.¬† So for me it was truly an amazing experience, a very memorable experience.
It was equally memorable as to what happened off the course.¬† And what I'm particularly proud of is that most of you recall last year we were focused on Boston Strong and making that a success.¬† I'll never forget being on the 18th hole with Henrik, and on the spot as I was giving him his trophy he spontaneously and generously donated a portion of his winnings to this wonderful cause.
So it was one of the many moments shared by a global audience, that illustrates what this championship can do, not only on the course, but off the course.¬† And the global attention that this tournament received last year is really a tribute to all of you, because you made it happen and you created millions of impressions.
And this year, in addition to covering world class golf and the hundred of the top world class players that were going to be here this year, you also have an opportunity to focus and to shine light on one of the most important initiatives that Deutsch Bank has supported for many years, which is supporting our nations' Veterans.¬† As most of you know, they're coming home in record numbers.¬† There are a million Veterans alone in New England.¬† It's a critical and an important time for us to help them to make that important transition back to life, back home, through the various challenges.¬† And this has been a mission of ours for many years.
Through a partnership with Secretary Hagel, Deutsche Bank was a founder of Veterans on Wall Street.¬† And through that program we've been able to raise millions of dollars in support of our nation's Veterans through many job fares we have orchestrated, thousands of jobs, opportunities.¬† Most recently we gave a million dollars to the Bob Woodruff Foundation.¬† And we've continued to hold job fares around the country for helping Veterans connect with prospective employers, showcasing their unbelievable credentials.¬† And many of you know, veterans offer great skills in leadership, in team work, in organization and they are really the dream of any prospective employer.
Because this job fair approach has worked in the past, for the first time we're partnering with the military, a friend of ours who is in the bright red shirt out there, I'd like to welcome you today, who is one of our partners in orchestrating a job fare right after the Deutsch Bank tournament at nearby Foxboro Stadium, at Gillette Stadium, where again we're employing to connect prospective candidates with many, many corporates out there.
Also want to welcome Rick Singer, who is the new president of the Tiger Woods Foundation.¬† It's been a pleasure working with Rick over the past couple of months.¬† Unfortunately Rick couldn't be here with us today, but we very much look forward to working in partnership with him over the next couple of years and many years to come for many years to come.¬† And like the Tiger Woods Foundation, the DB Foundation is pillared on the notion of education, and we share a common bond and together we've raised $25 million for many of the Tiger Woods Foundation local charities.
In a moment we are going to hear from a delightful young man, who I've had the opportunity to spend some time with, one of the many Tiger Woods scholars.¬† He's a martial arts specialist, as you will hear, so we have someone to protect us.
Lastly, I'd like to thank my partner, Bill Woodley, who is not here, but will be here shortly, with his son, James.¬† He has really dedicated himself in order to make this tournament a great success.
So thanks for being here.¬† Enjoy today.¬† And I'll turn it back over to Mike.¬† Thank you.
MIKE ANTOLINI:¬† Thanks, Jack.¬† Again, we appreciate your support of this championship.¬† Let me also remind everyone that in addition to the enhanced military initiates that Jack mentioned, the Deutsche Bank Championship again will offer all active, retired and reserve military complimentary free tickets all week long.
The Tiger Woods Foundation's main focus so to help first generation students get to college.¬† We do that through educational programs that include financial aid, internships, workshops and dedicated mentors.
This year we are excited to announce an expanded program in Boston where we added four new scholars.¬† And these scholars join the more than 100 scholars across Boston, Washington, D.C., New York and California that make up the Earl Woods Scholar program.
Today we invited one of our Boston scholars, Lenny Lenny Baez, to share his experiences with the Foundation and that program.¬† He's an incredible example of why the money we raise through the Deutsche Bank Championship is so critically important.
Lenny is a first generation college student, born and raised here in Boston, Mass.¬† He started his journey with the Tiger Woods Foundation last year as an Earl Wood Scholar.¬† He's currently studying kinesiology at San Jose State.¬† And as Jack mentioned he's a judo martial artist and he was recently part of the 2014 National Judo Collegiate winning team.¬† Very impressive.¬† He's truly a remarkable young man.¬† And I'd like to invite him up to the podium to say a few words.¬† Lenny Baez.
LENNY GUERRERO‑BAEZ:¬† Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen, my name is Lenny Guerrero‑Baez.¬† I am an Earl Woods Scholar and part of the Tiger Woods Foundation and currently finished my first year at San Jose State University.
I am the youngest of two in my family and raised in South Boston.¬† Both of my parents are originally from the Dominican Republic and only made it up to their first or second year of high school, mostly because they had to start working to support their families.¬† Specifically my dad stopped attending school at the age of 14 after his mother died of leukemia to help support his brothers and sisters.¬† This strong work ethic carried on to me and I have been able to add that aspect to every part of my life.
I am also an Avid martial artist and I have been practicing martial arts for over five years.¬† It has become a big part of my life.
In December of 2008 my father was attacked and beaten within an inch of his life.¬† With the fear of that possibly happening to me, we searched for a martial arts school for me to learn how to defend myself.¬† We were lucky to find one three blocks from my home.¬† What started out to be just pure self defense turned into my passion, my life.¬† I even have a dream of being part of the 2020 Olympic Judo Team.
I learned so much from my time there, how to respect people and to respect myself.¬† I learned to never give up and to give every task I do 100% of my effort.¬† These are lessons that I still use in my life every day.
Like any other person I have had my fair share of difficulties and challenges.¬† I was raised in a tough neighborhood where my mother was afraid to let me go out and play in the playground, where drugs and violence were visible on almost every street block.
My life in school up until high school was pretty tough because I experienced obesity as a child.¬† It wasn¬ít until high school that I eventually gained the confidence to stand up for myself.¬† My grades suffered throughout the years, mostly due to being a teenager.¬† I had a change of heart and decided grades were important because it finally started to kick in that if I didn¬ít do my best in high school I would not go anywhere in life.¬† This was constantly drilled into my head by my older sister, family and instructors who all wanted the best for me.
Thankfully for me I had great people who kept my head straight and made sure my mind was on the bigger prize.¬† With their help I finally got my grades under control after my sophomore year and graduated with a 3.9 GPA, which was the highest male GPA in my graduating class.
The Tiger Woods Foundation entered my life one day during my lunch break at school.¬† I was in my guidance counselor¬ís office asking for help with how I was going to pay for my dream school.¬† God bless her soul because I was in her office every day for help and she was always willing to give it.
She directed me to a binder full of scholarships available.¬† First one on the top of the list was the application for the Earl Woods Scholarship Program.¬† At the moment it was just one of many scholarships I was applying for in hopes of finding funds for my dream school.
I filled out the application and one afternoon in June after coming home from school I got a call from the Tiger Woods Foundation, to inform me that I had been chosen to be an Earl Woods Scholar.¬† In excitement I jumped around so much I knocked over my desk lamp.¬† It really did not hit me how big of a role the Earl Woods Scholarship Program would have in my life.¬† It kicked in after our induction banquet where I met the other scholars and learned more about the program.
The program paired me with a great mentor in Rashad Cope.¬† Who has supported me throughout college and this experience.¬† That¬ís what I really love about this foundation.¬† It is not a ¬ďcheck book organization¬Ē as in they give you the check and send you on your way.¬† They are there for the long run and always have what is best for you in mind.
A great example of this for me was our first retreat for the freshmen, which was a summer workshop.¬† In just three days, myself and a group of 16 other teenagers became a family.¬† At the end we were all in tears when we had to leave each other.
I realized that I am not the only one with a back story; I am not the only one who has dreams.¬† I realized the reason we got so close is because we all understood each other something like that does not happen on a average day.¬† This group of 16 teenagers along with the staff and my mentor became my Tiger Woods Foundation family.
I believe we all grow a little day by day, it just depends if it is a big change or a small change which makes the difference.¬† Thanks to the scholarship program I was able to grow more as an adult.¬† From learning how to email a colleague to greeting professional individuals.¬† To building my resume and utilizing the resources that are available to me.¬† Thanks to the Earl Woods Scholarship Program and thanks to this family I am taking the right steps toward becoming an adult and achieving my dreams.¬†¬†¬†
MIKE ANTOLINI:¬† Thank you, Lenny, what a great job, Lenny, that was a great speech, we appreciate that.¬† Lenny really represents the type of student what we are hoping to reach through the foundation.¬† And we are proud of Lenny and all of our Boston scholars.
Our next guest has a deep his foundation serves as the host organization.¬† So let me introduce life via satellite, the founder of the Tiger Woods Foundation, Tiger Woods.
TIGER WOODS:¬† First of all, Jack, thanks for supporting our event and being involved.¬† Since our inception, since the tournament's inception in 2003, this has been a tremendous vehicle for us to be able to do some good for not just the community, but for everyone in the United States.¬† We've been able to do for the military, the Deutsch Bank for the military, and all people that came out in support of our event have which to understand what we're all about, kids like Lenny and many others, by giving them a chance, by giving them an opportunity for their lives and their future and how to go about it.
And as Lenny so eloquently put, is it's not a checkbook organization.¬† We're not going to write a check and leave you out there to figure out for yourself.¬† We're there to provide a support group, you're not alone, you are part of the family, when you become part of the Earl Woods Scholars, and become part of the Tiger Woods Foundation, you're part of a family.
I think one of the biggest things we've learned from a lot of the kids who have gone through our programs throughout the years, and understanding that most of the kids that come through our programs are first generation kids to ever go to college.¬† And that's really saying something.¬† Not everyone has two parents.¬† Some don't even have any.¬† Some grow up in neighborhoods what we would all be fearful of.¬† These are kids who are tough.¬† But just never really get an opportunity.¬† And once we provide them an opportunity and a safe haven, a place to learn and grow, and it's truly amazing the talent that they have, that they can foster into the things that Lenny is doing.¬† And he put down the gauntlet, which is pretty exciting.¬† So I need to be part of the 2021 Olympics, as well.¬† So I better get my butt in gear.
But from all of the kids at the Foundation, for all of you guys who are there as part of the media or covering to event.¬† We all thank you.
MIKE ANTOLINI:¬† Thank you, Tiger.¬† And now we'll open it up for question and answer.
Q.¬† Tiger, if you haven't been in this position before where you have to qualify for the FedExCup playoff and the Ryder Cup, what's your game plan going forward over the next few weeks, and how confident are you that you will get in.
TIGER WOODS:¬† Right.¬† Actually it was only a couple of years ago.¬† I was in the same predicament last year and didn't make the playoffs.¬† Made one three years ago, the year that the PGA was at Atlanta Athletic Club.¬† I had come off an Achilles injury, and didn't play most of the summer, and subsequently didn't play well enough to make it in the playoffs.¬† So I've been in this position before.¬† Hopefully I can do a little better than I did last time.
I have two big events coming up the next few weeks to make some points, and I think that if the next couple of events I should be all right.
Q.¬† How, if you can walk us through how you spent the past week, and what sort of progress you made in terms of you practice, getting back your swing?
TIGER WOODS:¬† The speed is developing.¬† The speed is coming back, I continue to get stronger.¬† I've gotten stronger, but we're just now introducing explosive training, into any regime, which is nice.¬† I'm excited about that.¬† The strength and the explosiveness is going to come back with time.¬† If I'm able to play, be able to train, almost to the‑‑ in fact in this event that I'm used to, that I'm accustomed to, that's coming around, just given time.
The past week I was with my kids, we were on a little vacation.¬† And Lindsay and myself and the kids, we just had a blast.¬† And I was taking them out and we hit some balls.¬† We had a good little time.¬† We toured a little bit and even played a little putt putt, which I won every single time (laughter).
Q.¬† Affectionately we call people of children with military families, Military Brats, we do that as a term of endearment, as you know.¬† We start off every show with a Veterans voice.¬† Could you talk about your dad and his service and how it impacted you on your career, just like Lenny, being impacted, as far as the training and that whole structure, just speak a little bit about that.
TIGER WOODS:¬† Yes, my dad served for 20 years, one weekend, one day.¬† He wanted to retire on exactly the 20th year, but they kept him around for another week.¬† And then he had some more paperwork he had to do.¬† And he finished on a Monday.¬† So then he retired.
My dad served as I said, just over 20 years.¬† He did six of those years as part of Special Forces.¬† Served two tours in Vietnam, one 12‑month tour, one 18‑month tour.¬† They were in some pretty tough circumstances, they were on the borders of a number of different countries there.¬† And Cambodia, Laos, and did a lot of work.
But he retired well before I was born.¬† But I've played on a military golf course or a Navy golf course in Long Beach, California.¬† And as an affectionate term, Military Brat, yes, I was.¬† I was a dependent.¬† I felt it was pretty neat that I got to play in all the military institutions, all throughout California for a discount rate as a dependent.¬† That was exciting for me.¬† And we played Marsh Air Force base, Martin, went up to even Presidio up in San Fran.¬† We went a lot of different places, Fort Ord, on the Monterey Peninsula.
Being part of the military family that my father was in, I got a chance to see some pretty amazing and meet pretty amazing people throughout my life.¬† And a lot of the friends that my dad had met were part of Special Forces, or the Special Forces community.¬† Obviously different branches.
For me, I got a chance to basically grow up in that type of culture.¬† And that's what I saw.¬† That's what I lived with.¬† Some were active duty.¬† Some were retired.¬† These guys had gone through the ringer and back.¬† And that's what I saw.¬† And I saw that work ethic up front, wide eyed, and a little punk kid.
They kept me in line, trust me, they definitely kept me in line.¬† I got needled every single time, every day.¬† It was always a constant needling, constant badgering.¬† It was also well and good.¬† It was also to toughen me up, as well.¬† That was fine.¬† I knew what they were trying to do.¬† They were trying to get in my head.¬† Eventually I learned how to get in their head with my game.¬† It all came back around.
But that's basically the gist of it.¬† I grew up with appreciation of what the military is, what they try to do and what they're doing around the world and I saw firsthand.¬† For the other who are a part of trying to help the military servicemen when they come back, it is truly amazing.¬† Because they truly do put their lives on the line for all of us, for all our freedoms.¬† We don't do enough in my opinion to say thank you for everything they do.
Q.¬† It seems that as you look back through your history, people write you off every time you have an injury, and you come back and don't immediately win a tournament.¬† What do you say to the critics these days, and Brandel Chamblee, who contends that the Tiger era is over.¬† How do you react to that?
TIGER WOODS:¬† Well, I've been through this situation before.¬† I remember a good one was back in‑‑ I had a good year in 2000, I believe I won nine times on our Tour, and three more around the world.¬† It was a good year.
But I didn't get off to a very good start in '01, I didn't win anything.¬† And I was asked, you know, what is it like to be in the slump that you're in?¬† Well, I had only played a few tournaments that year and hadn't won anything, I've been in that situation before.¬† Unfortunately part of playing sports is getting injured.¬† We push the limits of our bodies for a long period of time.
And golf, for a longer period of time.¬† I believe Arnold and Gary played the Masters for over 50 years.¬† We put a lot of undue stress on our bodies.¬† For us in golf it's the same rotational movement, we do the same thing over and over and over again.¬† And we're doing it 500 to a thousand times a day, and after 20, 30 years of it things are going to break down.¬† Unfortunately I've had my share of breakdowns.¬† I've had to rehab and I've had to come back.¬† And through all the years I've been able to do that.
Unfortunately my first surgery was back in '94.¬† My left knee.¬† I had an couple of cysts sitting on a vein hitting a nerve, that didn't feel very good.¬† But I was able to come back.¬† And have a pretty good college at career, and a pretty good amateur career.¬† I've had a few more operations unfortunately throughout the years on my knee and my back, and I've been able to come back from each one.
Q.¬† Following up on the young lady's question, what keeps the competitive juices burning, is it chasing the majors titles?¬† What keeps you with all the young guns out there, shooting what they shoot week after week, what keeps you going?
TIGER WOODS:¬† Winning more.¬† I thoroughly enjoy that.¬† That's why I played from a very young age.¬† I've always been a person that likes to compete.¬† I tried other team sports.¬† I played baseball.¬† I even ran track and cross‑country in high school.¬† But I just didn't find the same love as I did in golf.¬† And I kept coming back to golf.¬† And I just kept coming back because I love being out there and competing in that environment.¬† And being able to practice, prepare and be able to beat everyone who was in that event.¬† Some events were five holes when I was a little kid, some were 18, and eventually became 72 hole events.¬† But the whole idea was to beat everyone in that event.
To me the satisfaction of that, being able to prepare and be able to go out there and get it done, I guess everyone has had the same opportunity, it does feel good.¬† I haven't lost that.¬† I certainly don't foresee that ever happening.
I've got a little five year old right now that is really pushing me pretty hard.¬† He wants to beat me in everything.¬† And that said, I was able to kick his butt in putt putt.¬† I've shown him how to get it done.
Q.¬† Looking ahead to the Firestone this week, is there any added pressure given your obvious success there?¬† Everything is at stake, the playoffs, Ryder Cup.¬† You're a guy who's been on the team both ways.¬† Is there a difference for qualifying to the team and obviously being picked, having done it both ways?
TIGER WOODS:¬† Well, is there any added pressure coming into this event?¬† No.¬† I've won in this event eight times, so I know how to play under various conditions, various circumstances, various fields.¬† I've been able to get it done eight different times in my career.¬† Certainly I'll draw upon those experiences and at all the events that I've played in that I've won throughout the previous years.¬† I've been able to win on this property.¬† And that does help.¬† Probably one of the reasons why I've been able to win certain events more times throughout my career than other events.
But as far as being able to be picked or earned your outright spot on the team, is there a difference?¬† Yeah, there is a difference.¬† One, you earn your way on the team, you felt like that you had two good years to qualify for the team and now I think it's majors plus one year to qualify for the team.
But in the end it's what can you do for your team?¬† Are you able to contribute?¬† And the year that I was picked for the Ryder Cup and Wales, Corey felt that I could contribute to the team.¬† I felt like I could, too.¬† I went out there with Strick and we played really well.¬† And I was able to win my singles match, as well.¬† I think I had a 3‑1 record in that event.
And hopefully that's what it comes down to, is all 12 guys, whether they earn their way on the team out right or they got picked by the captain, the whole idea is that when your name is called, are you able to get a point?¬† And sometimes it's for five sessions, sometimes it's only for one.¬† But when you name is called, go get a point for your team.¬† And that's what we're going to try to do.¬† Hopefully I can get on the team and be a part of that.
MIKE ANTOLINI:¬† Thanks again, look forward to seeing you soon.
TIGER WOODS:¬† Thank you, Mike.
MIKE ANTOLINI:¬† I want to remind everyone, we're going to have a conference call with defending champion Henrik Stenson this Wednesday at 2:40 p.m. Eastern time, please see Abby if anyone needs call‑in information for that.¬† We're very excited to speak with our defending champ.¬† Due to his travel schedule he wasn't able to join us today.¬† Thanks for coming.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports