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March 19, 2015

Kevin Na


Q.  Kevin Na, that's the way to get the tournament started, 6 birdies out there.  Tell us about your round today, pretty good.
KEVIN NA:  Played very solid.  Made a lot of key putts.  Hit some good iron shots close and I did pretty well on of par-5s.  Overall, I did pretty well.

Q.  How would you classify the conditions today because the breeze we thought might kick up didn't too much so far.
KEVIN NA:  Not too much.  Usually you know out here it can blow and it's very tricky going over water with the wind but today it was somewhat calm day.  Greens were somewhat soft.  There were some scores to be shot out there.

Q.  For you, what is that special feeling to play in Mr. Palmer's tournament?
KEVIN NA:  It's awesome.  I was watching the special on Arnie on the Golf Channel.  How cool is this, I'm actually playing in Arnie's tournament.
Growing up I was obviously a big Arnie fan and it's not nice to get to meet him and play in this tournament year after year, every year come here for over ten years and still cool.

Q.  Great playing.
KEVIN NA:  Thanks.

Q.  Scorecard looks pretty good for Kevin Na, six birdies, one bogey.
KEVIN NA:  I played great today.  Hit a lot of good shots.  Got up and down when I needed to.  Made the key putts when I needed to.

Q.  You have got 22 putts.
KEVIN NA:  That's pretty good.  With a 3-putt that was my bogey.  You know, the greens this morning it wasn't so bad but what I'm concerned is in the afternoon.  The root structure is a little weak where the afternoon is going to get beat up a little bit and get bumpy.  The morning rounds are not too bad.

Q.  Not only played well here before and you get off to this great start.  What kind of mindset does that put you in moving forward?
KEVIN NA:  I'm going to go one at a time.  I think the scores will be somewhat lower than normal because the greens are soft but just going to go out and play hard.  Hopefully I can be in the final group on Sunday.

Q.  What about this place?
KEVIN NA:  You know, funny thing, long time when I first came here it was such a tough golf course.  I had a hard time playing here.  After a few years you know I started -- okay I know how to play this hole or this hole.  I know how to hit it to this pin.
Sometimes it takes a few years to get used to.  After that I've been -- had some really good finishes here, 2nd, 4th and 5th, I believe.  So, you know, overall it fits my eye pretty well and I've been very happy coming here.

Q.  You had the putter going nicely.  When did you go to the --
KEVIN NA:  The claw?

Q.  Still conventional on long ones?
KEVIN NA:  How did you know?  Kenny just giving it away, isn't he?  Yeah.  Just -- early this year I've been messing with claw putting with the claw grip and it's worked on and off and at Miami I found some is that worked for me on long putts, I'll do conventional and the short ones, somewhat short ones, 20 feet and in I'll do the claw and it's been working.  I'm going to keep doing it.

Q.  That's your point, 20 feet?
KEVIN NA:  20 feet-ish, ish.  I'm -- it's not going to be 21 feet I can't do it.  Kind of a guideline I have right now.

Q.  Kevin, not to get ahead but with three Top-5 finishes here like you mentioned what would it mean to you to win this tournament here at Mr. Palmer's place?
KEVIN NA:  I lost in a playoff in Mr. Nicklaus's tournament.  I had a 2nd here, too.  I think I'm due for one of these legends tournaments and break through and get to take a picture with him.

Q.  You said you were watching the special.  What about Arnie like really resonates with you?
KEVIN NA:  He's the king.  There's a lot to learn from him when he played and when he was not even playing.  It was just awesome to watch what he's done in Major championships, what he's done for the game, the fans.  It was fun to watch.
I've seen it before but I still watch it again and, you know, it's very special to meet him every year.  I take a picture with him every year.  At my house I got picture up on the wall with Mr. Palmer and Mr. Nicklaus.  You have to, right, Mr. Player, obviously.

Q.  Do one every year?
KEVIN NA:  I got a few things signed by him.

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