home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


August 11, 2016

Zach Johnson

Silvis, Illinois

DOUG MILNE: Zach Johnson, thanks for joining us, 6-under 65 today, bogey free, your 12th bogey free round, I believe, here at TPC Deere Run, tournament record I might add. With that said, just a few thoughts on your opening rounds, starting, stopping, so forth.

ZACH JOHNSON: Yeah, as far as the start and stop, we're used to that. That's not any secret. It happens all the time. There's days where there's a 30-minute delay, there's days where, shoot, it takes 30-some odd hours to play 18 holes. I'm used to it. Relaxed a little bit, ate something, worked out a little bit, that kind of thing, just to stay loose, and then went back at it. I felt good going back out. I would have liked to have continued my round certainly after playing No. 3, but a solid day. There was not many mistakes, and if I did get in trouble, I kind of got myself out of it in pretty, I'd say, consistent, in a good way.

I felt like I left some out there, too, at the same time. I made some putts, but yet I missed some very makeable ones early on in my day and kind of in the middle of the round, too.

I don't know what it is, but I love the golf course. I love the putting surfaces. I do know the moment I feel like I can take this place down is the moment it can bite me, so I've still got to stay focused and keep the pedal down.

Q. You hit every green in regulation until you had two holes to go and then your drive was the first one, but the second one, did you just get over the top of that on 9?
ZACH JOHNSON: Yeah, it was a funky lie. It was actually -- even though it was in the middle of the fairway or whatever you want to call it, it was significantly uphill and right to left and the wind is out of the right, I was trying to hold it and tried to take the wind out of it, and I did not hold it. Yeah, that was, I guess, fortuitous, the fact that I had a pretty manageable lie there, and I was telling Damon, I was looking at like an eight-foot circle, and it came out obviously quite nice.

But yeah, I mean, a good save on 8, as well. Poor drive there and actually pretty good second shot. I didn't think it would get that far. I thought it would be wet enough that it would just kind of stop.

But other than that tee shot and probably that second shot, it was a pretty clean scorecard all in all.

Q. You've won here before and had a lot of success, but how much would it mean to you to kind of get that second win or add to it?
ZACH JOHNSON: I feel like I get that question every year here. It would mean a lot, yeah, certainly. Any win is -- the next one is always the best one, the way I see it. I'm hoping there's a next one ideally here this week. But if it's not, the way I see it so I can take whatever positives come my way this week, and I can cling to them and probably implement them in the next go-around. If you look at last year, I was not happy when I left here last year. I felt like I certainly had the opportunity to win that golf tournament, and everybody can say they've missed shots, but I felt like I kind of gave one away, even that last day. But then the next week something happened that was pretty good.

My point is that really I've just got to stay patient, which I despise that word, and just accept whatever -- cling to the positives. That's what I'm going to take away, and so far so good.

Q. Why do you despise that word?
ZACH JOHNSON: Because it's hard. When you feel like everything is right and proper and it doesn't surface, it's just frustrating as a competitor. Bottom line is you've got to mentally know that I can play really, really, really, really good and lose, and I can play pretty darned good and win. That's just the way it is. I can think of a lot of weeks where I've played almost as good as I can play and didn't win, and then I've had some weeks where, shoot, I might have made a double and won. You've just got to be patient. There's just so much golf. Everybody talks about who's in contention going into the weekend. Well, there's 36 holes left. Who's in contention going into Sunday? There's still 18 holes left. It's just really a lip-in instead of a lip-out, that kind of thing, and just, again, remaining patient and just keep doing what you're doing.

Q. Along those lines, the par on 10, par, par, par, and you know par golf gets you buried here, how do you put that aside and keep on going?
ZACH JOHNSON: There's a lot of golf. That's really what it is. That's what Dr. Mo and I talk about. Wait for your stretch. There's a stretch coming, just wait for it. You saw I didn't even hit a very good drive on 14. I hit a terrible drive on 14, and I made about a 15-, 20-footer there on 14 after missing about a five-, six-footer on 13, and that just kind of kick-started my day. It was a pretty easy putt. The next putt was one you don't typically make. You don't try to make a 25-footer breaking four feet. Then again, I had a lot of opportunities.

10, 11, 17, 13, there was a lot -- 1. But I made some, so it probably evened out. I don't know what you all think, but I think if I saw it, I think it's probably about what I should have shot, with the exception of maybe a save on 8 and 9.

Q. How often have you played with Steve here?
ZACH JOHNSON: I think the last time I played with him -- it's funny you say that because last time I think with him was I think the year I won in '12, because what was he, two- or three-time defending champ at that point, and I remember standing in the fairway on 10 and I hit my wedge up there to like six, seven feet, and he hit last, and I turned to Damon like, he's the defending champ, and he hooped it. I'm like, really? That's probably why. So Strick and I today were talking about the same thing. He hit it to like this, and the last time we had played there together, he made it.

Yeah, I don't recall ever playing with him on the weekend, though, other than Thursday and Friday.

Q. You both have had so much success here. Do you have to work against watching each other, especially in the first round?
ZACH JOHNSON: No, there's no getting caught up in that whatsoever. I don't feel that way, sorry.

Q. With the date change and your connection to the tournament, did a lot of guys this year seek you out for advice on the tournament and the golf course, especially guys that are looking for Ryder Cup, FedExCup points, anything like that?
ZACH JOHNSON: I wouldn't say anybody really pursued me, no, unfortunately. I would have loved that. I was trying to pursue some myself. It's just a difficult time of year. That's unfortunate in the sense that the majors get affected. This week should be the PGA Championship week. But evidently the golf in the Olympics is a priority, so it's unfortunate.

Q. You mentioned earlier about the anger you left here with last year --
ZACH JOHNSON: Anger is a strong word, but yeah, I was not happy.

Q. Disappointment?
ZACH JOHNSON: Disappointment, yeah, that's probably better.

Q. Did that factor into your mentality at all this year?
ZACH JOHNSON: Not at all.

Q. You put that aside?
ZACH JOHNSON: No, shoot no. Last year was just really good. If I remember correctly, I hit it really good last year and putted okay and almost won the golf tournament. No, there was no factor there. Last year is done.

Q. I know you said you've all been through it before with weather and stoppages, but when you look at tomorrow, look at the possible rain coming, how big a wild card can weather play in terms of do you have to start thinking about it now?
ZACH JOHNSON: Well, yeah, you've got to be prepared for anything basically. Certainly mentally you do. Is that what you're alluding to? Again, we're used to it, but yeah, you've got to be prepared for it. Being the modest driver of the golf ball that I am, the wetter it gets, it's not exactly ideal. But my guess is that second round, because of the forecast, the guys that are -- play early in the morning tomorrow will probably play it up if there's any chance of rain. So you'll have ball in hand, which obviously puts more of a priority on hitting fairways and that kind of thing. But yeah, you've just got to roll with it. I mean, I've had many, many days, many tournaments where I don't even touch a club essentially one day, and the next day you feel like you played 36 holes. So that's just -- it's not ideal. It's really not ideal for us, but it's even more so not ideal for the staff and the superintendents and grounds crew, that kind of thing. But we're used to it, you know. Just kind of roll with it.

DOUG MILNE: Zach, great start. Thanks for your time.

ZACH JOHNSON: Thank you.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

ASAP sports

tech 129
About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297