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June 19, 2014

Bubba Watson


Q.テつ Bubba, good start today.テつ 3‑under par, no bogeys.テつ Comfortable to be here this week after the sort of the stress and tension of last week?
BUBBA WATSON:テつ Yeah.テつ I always look forward to this one.テつ This is a good one.テつ Travelers puts on a great event here, so coming here you know you're going to have a lot of birdie chances.テつ There's only a few par‑5s, but there's other holes.テつ You have a lot of wedges.テつ So it's about making putts around here.
I didn't really score as well as I wanted to, but it's not too bad with the start with a little bit of rain.

Q.テつ How was it?テつ How did the golf course play out there today?
BUBBA WATSON:テつ It's soft.テつ It's soft like it normally is, but they put the pins in spots where it's hard to get to.テつ So you know, they try to make sure that it's not too gettable.テつ Obviously every round we're going to have a guy that plays good because everybody is pretty good on the PGA TOUR.テつ So right now there's some low scores.
This afternoon, light winds, the guys can play pretty good.

Q.テつ You look back at 2010.テつ This is where you got your first win.テつ It was very emotional.テつ Two major championships since then.テつ When you look back, does it still remain emotional for you?
BUBBA WATSON:テつ It does, because it was my dad.テつ My dad passed away three months later, so he got to see his son win for the first time.テつ So that's a big deal for my family.

Q.テつ I understand Rickie sent out a tweet this morning, a little disappointed he wasn't joining you guys on the golf course today.
BUBBA WATSON:テつ Yeah, exactly.テつ You know, Rickie, you know, he's this young super star, he's gotta rest some weeks, you know.テつ (Laughs).

Q.テつ Thanks for your time.テつ Well played.テつ Good luck the rest of the way.
BUBBA WATSON:テつ Yeah.テつ Thanks a lot.

Q.テつ Well, a bogey‑free opening round for Bubba Watson.テつ Bubba, after a grind at the U.S. Open, how did you feel out there today at the Travelers?
BUBBA WATSON:テつ I only grinded for two days, so I had a lot of energy going into today.テつ We started out with a little rain, tough to make some birdies, but other than that, the course is playing well.テつ Even though it took the rain pretty well, it's kind of soft, but not too windy.テつ So you can score around it.テつ I just didn't capitalize on some of the easier holes, the gettable holes, but all in all it's a good day, bogey free, 3‑under par.テつ You know, keep doing that, I'll have a shot on the weekend.

Q.テつ How was the course holding up?テつ I know it was raining for much of the front nine.
BUBBA WATSON:テつ It held up pretty good.テつ There's no mud balls, no mud puddles.テつ It was just a light rain, so it was just enough to make it difficult to make birdies, but not enough to make the golf course sloppy.テつ So the golf course is in perfect shape right now, and the afternoon guys might be able to tear it up.

Q.テつ What is it about TPC River Highlands that makes you so comfortable with this layout?
BUBBA WATSON:テつ I love the way it looks.テつ You know, it sets up good.テつ There's a lot of shots, a lot of tee shots where I have to cut the ball and I like cutting the ball off the tee.テつ A lot of wedges, a lot of short irons in here, so it plays right into my hands.

Q.テつ Thanks, Bubba.テつ Great round.テつ Good to see you.テつ How is it going?テつ Bubba, I'd imagine the term bogey free is sounding pretty great to you right now, bogey‑free 3‑under par coming off a very tough U.S. Open track.テつ Chris Kirk said, "I can't wait to prove it to myself again that I am actually a great player."
BUBBA WATSON:テつ Yeah, exactly.テつ That's why I love coming here.テつ You know, when you come here after the U.S. Open, you feel like you have a chance to make some birdies.テつ So coming here, you know, it's always a great atmosphere.テつ Travelers puts on a great championship here.テつ They're one of the best sponsors on the TOUR.
So coming out here you know you're going to have some birdie looks at it, so today I went bogey free.テつ I didn't make all the putts I wanted to, but I'll take it.

Q.テつ You obviously have a great track record here, this being the place of your first win back in 2010, a runner up since then.テつ Solo fourth last year.テつ So what is it about this course that really fits your eye?
BUBBA WATSON:テつ Well, Kevin Streelman, he's the one that really teaches me so much around this golf course.テつ (Laughs).テつ He's given me great tips around this golf course.
You know, really what it is, when I come here, you know I'm going to have a lot of wedges.テつ I'm confident having my first win here.テつ I know I can do it again.
You know, we come here and it's usually good weather.テつ Might have a little rain here and there, but the golf course always plays into my hands being a longer hitter.テつ I can hit a lot of wedges.
It's about making putts, and if I can make putts‑‑ today I didn't make as many putts as I wanted to, but can't really get mad as a bogey‑free 3‑under.

Q.テつ And then my final question, this is my favorite thing to ask you.テつ After your first Masters win, you talked about the difference and how you had never dreamed of getting as far as you did when you first claimed victory here in 2010.テつ Now we're talking to you, you have two green jackets.テつ How have things changed for you even more when you take a look back since 2010?
BUBBA WATSON:テつ Well, it's been a crazy ride.テつ You know got six wins after 2010, five after 2005, and so you know, my dad passing away, playing in some Ryder Cups, Presidents Cups.テつ You know, it's been a whirlwind the last few years, so how blessed am I to play on the PGA TOUR and then get some wins on top of that, two green jackets, my son.テつ You know, just everything is any life is going in the right direction.テつ No matter how you score, you know, I've had a blessed career, and so you know, I look forward to the challenges coming up because I'll be on TOUR for a few more years now, so it'll be fun trying to get a few more wins.

Q.テつ Things are good for Bubba Watson right now.
BUBBA WATSON:テつ Yeah.テつ Everything's good right now.

Q.テつ All right.テつ Thank you so much for joining us.テつ Good luck the rest of the week.
BUBBA WATSON:テつ Thank you.

Q.テつ The 67 today, I saw what you said today it was just kind of on your round, just left maybe a few putts out there?テつ Is that it?
BUBBA WATSON:テつ Yeah.テつ I didn't really hit my wedges as close as I wanted to.テつ I missed one or two putts, you know, had some good breaks, had some bad breaks, but all in all you'll take it.テつ Started off hot, 3‑under.テつ You'll take 3‑under.テつ Hopefully I can make the cut and challenge for the lead.テつ You have one guy shooting really low.
The course was gettable today, and I left a couple shots out there, but all in all bogey free is pretty good.

Q.テつ You still like this place, huh?
BUBBA WATSON:テつ Yeah.テつ No, it's good.テつ It's been good to me.テつ Been good to me and my family.

Q.テつ Do you notice the big following and do you like that?テつ Do you interact at all?
BUBBA WATSON:テつ Oh, for sure.テつ I mean you like it.テつ Something is going right.テつ If nobody's following you, that means I'm not playing very good or they just don't like me.テつ So it's good.テつ It's good to see the crowd.テつ Part of the Golf Boys were here today in our group.テつ Ben coming off a win, Hunter playing good golf like he always does.テつ So it's good to see the fans out there supporting us.

Q.テつ How much do they help or hinder because they're so loud?
BUBBA WATSON:テつ It never hinders.テつ You know, again, it means you're doing something right if you have a following, or they really just hate you and they want to make you mess up.テつ (Laughs).
But no, it's always good.テつ When you have a crowd out there, you can feel it.テつ You can feel the people pulling for you.テつ You know, and it makes you a little bit more amped up and excited about the round.テつ For the most part 99 percent of the time it's going to help you.

Q.テつ People say they can relate to you.テつ You seem like just a regular guy.テつ What do you think of that?
BUBBA WATSON:テつ You know, I just see it as I'm not going to change who I am.テつ I'm just this kid from Baghdad, Florida named Bubba.テつ And I play golf because I enjoy it and I have fun with it.テつ I'm not into all these lessons and technical things.テつ I'm just trying to make birdies.テつ I don't really care if it's ugly looking, as long as you score‑‑ bogey free and about 3‑under, that's a pretty good round of golf.

Q.テつ What happened on 13?
BUBBA WATSON:テつ Yeah.テつ That was funny, I hit a pretty good shot.テつ You know, when it's raining like that, sometimes the ball can squirt a different way, and it kind of cut and squirted back and went in the water.テつ And then I hit this perfect 4‑wood up over those trees and cut it to like two feet, it looked like, two feet, and made birdie.テつ So birdie after hitting the ball in the water is pretty good.テつ It kind of gets you ready to go, you know, when you can sneak a birdie in like that.

Q.テつ How do you like playing in the rain?
BUBBA WATSON:テつ I don't like it that much, but you know, today I held it together in the first part.
You know, sometimes when you get ball in between the club face‑‑ or rain in between the ball and the club face, the ball can go wherever it wants to.テつ You know, it gets a little squirty on you.テつ And so today held it together pretty good.
Ben had a couple that squirted on him, I had a few that squirted on me, but held it together.テつ You know, again, no bogeys, so it's good.

Q.テつ Bubba, you said that Rickie texted you guys about the Golf Boys.テつ Did you and Hunter and Ben maybe talk about songs in between holes or anything the group's going to be doing?
BUBBA WATSON:テつ You know, well, I don't know about Hunter, but I'm always thinking about stuff like that, but Ben's probably thinking about stuff like that, too.テつ But you know, once our name's called and we're inside the ropes there, we all focus on what we're doing and we don't really talk about that kind of stuff.テつ We didn't really talk about the songs today, but maybe I'll mention it tomorrow, give us something else to talk about.

Q.テつ How often do you guys get paired together?
BUBBA WATSON:テつ Not really.テつ We don't get paired together that much.テつ There's certain categories how they pair you, so winner‑‑ now, with Ben winning this year now he's in that category, so they can finally do that, put us all together like that.

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