Q. On the other hand, what does it matter or mean if players are winning every week at 20, 25, 22, 24? Does that mean anything?
ROCCO MEDIATE: I think it's more exciting for the galleries. I think they'd rather see birdies than 20 straight pars, whatever. I guess we're entertainers. I think it would be good if we had some of both. But, you know, like next week, I haven't played the new one, they redid it, low scores there. Phoenix, if it's nice, low scores there. Pebble shuts down because it's real tough, nasty golf. LA is not too bad. Although LA, look at the PGA Championship. I remember back in '91, what did I shoot? Freddie won in 1990. I think I shot 12-under or 13-under, finished second. Now, that's not second anymore.
Q. What kind of statement does Ernie make, win Sun City by eight, he's going to win this by seven or eight, what does that say to him as it relates to Tiger?
ROCCO MEDIATE: I don't see a problem with Ernie challenging Tiger for the next however many years he wants to have it happen. I don't know Tiger that well, but I certainly think Tiger would love that to happen. He likes to be pushed. I was watching some of the replays of the 2001, they had the playoff, 2000, just to hear is voice saying, "We were hitting these shots, this, back and forth." We all love that. When you're the No. 1 player, No. 2, No. 3, whatever, that's what they want. You want back in the Connors/McEnroe. I think he would relish that. I think he would be better. It would make Ernie better, Phil better, Vijay. They're all in the same boat. I hope that rivalry does happen.
Ernie doesn't miss anything. He's not missing a part of his game. What is he bad at? Nothing. I mean, he drives it 400, chips and putts as well as anybody on the planet, he's a good iron player. He has been for how many years?
What I think happened was, it's my opinion, you may think it's pretty stupid, but before Tiger, the big guns just kind of ruled the roost. They just kind of won a lot of big tournaments. Then Tiger came and said, "You're not going to do that anymore." That probably made them go, "Why is this happening to me now? Why couldn't he come along 10 years from now?"
I think now they're wanting that rivalry, they're wanting him to push. I've always told people, not that I'm in that echelon of players I'm talking about, but I use Tiger to my advantage to make me get as good as I can at my age, not to challenge him for the No. 1 player in the world, that's not going to happen, but to be able to challenge him every once in a while and be able to compete with him, where in five to 10 years from now I can tell my kids, "I beat Tiger that week." That would be cool.
If you use it as a negative, say "I can't beat him," you're going to lose. Pretty simple.
Q. Yes or no answers aren't part of your staple?
ROCCO MEDIATE: No. If you give me multiple choice, I'll still make my own answer up. It will be A, B, C, D, then Mine (laughter).
Q. Any reason you aren't playing Sony?
ROCCO MEDIATE: I got four in a row after that. My body doesn't like that. It doesn't really deal with six in a row very well.
Q. How was the first week with the new putter?
ROCCO MEDIATE: You know, I can make a slight assessment, but not a different assessment. I hit the ball really close to the hole for two and a half days. I'm talking I had made a lot of five-footers, six-footers, in, a couple 20-footers. But mostly inside 10 feet, I made most of them. I didn't do that a lot with my other putter this week.
These are tough greens. I was hitting it close enough to where I didn't have a lot of -- I had a ton of five-footers and six-footers for birdie. Probably three-quarters of the birdies I made were five or six feet.
I'm comfortable. The last putt I had for birdie, I didn't see the board. I missed my name, I missed the first board. I walked up looking, it zipped by me, I couldn't see it. I felt like if I made that, I wanted to make birdie anyway, I was over the putt, kind of laughing to myself going, "Here I am in this situation the first week with this thing." It's a good sign.
The only thing I said, I knew it was going to be bouncy because it was in a nasty area, I knew it was going to move to the right. I'm just going to blast it right through. It just got going, I knocked it three feet by.
I feel like I'm close with it. I'll just keep working with it. I have one week under my belt, it worked fine, except the first day. I was a bit out of sorts, as they say. It just got better and better. I think I'll be all right.
Q. How long was the putt on 18?
ROCCO MEDIATE: I don't know. Seven, eight feet. Seven or eight feet.
Q. What about the eagle?
ROCCO MEDIATE: That far. It was inside a foot. That's a nice eagle, just tap-in, go to the next hole. I had a gimme on 4 and 5. That kind of got me rolling. Then Vijay and I both birdied 8. I birdied 9, 10, 12, all kinds of holes. Just never stopped till the last hole.
JOAN vT ALEXANDER: Thank you, Rocco, for joining us.
ROCCO MEDIATE: You got it.
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