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July 30, 2014

Davis Love III


JOHN BUSH:  Davis, welcome back to the Barracuda Championship, just get some comments on being back for the second time.
DAVIS LOVE III:  I'm excited to be here.  One of the guys ‑ a bunch of guys were out putting late last night talking about the Stableford format.  They said, Did you play the one at Castle Pines?  I said, Yeah, I did.  Did you win it?  I said, Yeah, I did.  Somebody said, Yeah, you won it twice.
So I love Stableford and playing at altitude and I love playing Nicklaus courses.  Suits my game.  I'm excited about it.  Glad to be here.
They've done such a great job keeping this tournament going for so many years.

Q.  I talked to you last year and you said you thought they were close to getting a title and even their own date.  So far, one for two.  Do you have prediction on their own date?
DAVIS LOVE III:  I don't know.  I'm a little more out of the loop now than I was because I was on the board and I knew stuff was brewing.  I'm on the path now, so I've heard a lot of talk about the new sponsor and all that and a lot of their new ideas.  They're very forward‑thinking and creative and want to have some fun.
So it's exciting.  I hope they can get a date.  I'm in the same boat with the McGladrey tournament in the fall.  We would like a spring date if we could get one, too.  Everybody wants a bigger, better date.
There has been a few chances for tournaments like Puerto Rico and this one to jump in.  Fortunately, Tim and the staff have done a great job keeping everybody moving forward.  We thought we might lose the Innisbrook week and thought we might lose, back in the day, San Antonio, but everybody keeps hanging in there.  It's a great sign for the tour that we don't have a dark date that needs to be filled very often.

Q.  This is a little different situation just because anything past September you're taking your chances with the weather.  Going to have to be like in September or...
DAVIS LOVE III:  You know, well this will be (indiscernible) into the Fall Series kicking off the year, but as you say, you can't really do that in.  In October, November, you're taking a chance.
So, yeah, has to be been the right date.
Another comment on the putting green.  Somebody said, Why wouldn't they move this tournament to Seattle or somewhere else.
No, they just need their own date here.  They don't need to move it somewhere else.  This is a great tournament.  They just need an open date.
Maybe down the road one will pop up.

Q.  (No microphone.)
DAVIS LOVE III:  Yeah.  We're working at the McGladrey Classic right now on playing two courses instead of one in the fall so we can play more players.  We need the young guys, the guys coming off the web.com and we need more start times.  So we need this event.  This is a very important event for a lot of young guys and a lot old guys that want to play that aren't in Akron.
So, yeah, we need this one.  We need Puerto Rico.  We need weeks like that to get the guys that aren't in World Golf Championships to give them starts.

Q.  Speaking of old guys‑‑ and I know you're old because you're three days older than me‑‑ are you happy and want to stay here for a while?
DAVIS LOVE III:  Yeah, I'm happy.  Obviously trying finish off this season and make it into the playoffs.  But I'm already making my schedule for next year.  I've only got two Champions Tour weeks that I'm not (indiscernible) to play.  One of them is Hawaii in the start in the year.
Next year would be my 30th consecutive TOUR season.  I want to play that season.  I want to give it another shot.  I was out a lot at the beginning of last year, and so I felt like I kind of missed a year.  Didn't make the 125.
So I would like to work my way back up and at least be competitive.  Maybe get in a few of the bigger tournaments next year.  One more run through some of the places I like to play before start focusing on the other side.
Ballstriking‑wise, the last three tournaments I've been up there for ballstriking.  So that's not the problem.  I'm not getting too old that I can't hit it anymore.  I just got to get the ball in the hole, and that's more mental than physical.
I'm just working on that and trying to get my confidence back more than my physical game back.

Q.  Can you win again out here on this TOUR?
DAVIS LOVE III:  I think I can.  I watched a lot of guys play really well in their late 40s, early 50s, all the way back to playing with Raymond Floyd in the Tournament of Champions when he had won on both tours.
That's my goal:  I would like to play Kapalua again.  I love that event.  I would like to play in Akron.  No offense to being here, but I would like to play in Akron again.  Bridgestone is one of my sponsors, and I would like to play there again.
Watching the highlights of those guys teeing off there, I would like to play the Doral, the Match Play, things like that.  So I would like to see the same thing that Rory is saying:  I would like to see how good I can get.  Not putting any expectations on myself.  Just seeing if I can get my game back is where I'm at.
You watch Watson.  Heck, He tied all of us at the Greenbrier and made the cut, was like 4‑under par with a pile of really good pliers at 4‑under, including Tom Watson in his 60s.
So there is no reason why I can't continue to make cuts and continue to compete out here for a while longer.
JOHN BUSH:  What's the key for this golf course with the Stableford system?
DAVIS LOVE III:  Well, you got to make some birdies obviously and be aggressive on the par‑5s, which these greens don't lend itself to hitting it really close and making a bunch of eagle putts.
I think you got to play the par‑5s smart and make some birdies, hopefully make an eagle, and then you have to stay away from the big numbers.
Fairways and greens.  On a Nicklaus course he is going to give you a chance to hit some fairways, but you have to hit a lot of greens and get some putts at it.
There are some surprisingly small greens, small targets because two‑level greens.  There are some tough shots and par‑3s that are tough to get the ball to.  I think ballstriking is going to be key, and then the guy who generally wins putts really well.

Q.  (Question regarding:  Best to have never won and best to have never won a major.)
DAVIS LOVE III:  Best never to have not won yet?  Not to have won a major?  I don't know.  Who is on your list?

Q.  I was going to say two are in the tournament.  Appleby and David Toms, a couple guys that could be on that list.
DAVIS LOVE III:  Toms is on the PGA.

Q.  That's right.  Sergio, I think.
DAVIS LOVE III:  Sergio would definitely be for the major.  He's definitely out there on the list.  And he's playing well.  He's played well in a lot of them recently.  He's up there on that one.  He's been around long enough.
Trying to think who hasn't won.  Rickie has won once.

Q.  It's a tough one, isn't it?
DAVIS LOVE III:  Yeah.  Who hasn't won that's playing really well right now?  I don't know that.

Q.  Do you follow who coming into this tournament maybe as the favorite?  We don't have the defending champion back again.
DAVIS LOVE III:  No, I don't look at it that much.  I know my son and daughter and son‑in‑law are out playing Fantasy Golf and they're always asking who is playing.  I don't know.
Generally this week you're going to take someone that's a good ballstriker, hits it a long way.  Seems like they have an advantage.
But then you got to get hot with the putter on top of that.  So you know, I mean, David Toms just walked by.  He's been playing really well.  He's such a good putter and hits the ball straight.  Didn't seem like yesterday it was running very much.

Q.  (No microphone.)
DAVIS LOVE III:  Yes.  If he gets hot.  Just recently we were at John Deere, and he can make a lot of birdies for sure.  Justin Hicks played well last week.

Q.  (No microphone.)
DAVIS LOVE III:  He's a good player.
JOHN BUSH:  I know you're a motorcycle guy, but any interest in Hot August Nights this week.
DAVIS LOVE III:  We were joking in the gym that we need to go to that but turn off our credit cards and checkbooks for a few nights.  If you get in there you can get in serious trouble.  I watch it all the time, the Barrett Jackson on TV.
I'm staying right down there by the airport, and at the hotel there is a bunch of cars already driving around and showing off.  Could be fun.

Q.  Do you own anything like that?
DAVIS LOVE III:  I used to.  I don't right now.  I used to have two or three old ones.  I would like to go.  Be fun to watch.
JOHN BUSH:  All right, Davis.  Thank you, sir.

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