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March 17, 2018

Bryson DeChambeau

Orlando, Florida

THE MODERATOR: We would like to welcome Bryson DeChambeau to the interview room here at the Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by Mastercard. 11-under, one back going into tomorrow the final round. What are your key takeaways through three rounds and then what do you look to tomorrow.

BRYSON DECHAMBEAU: Well, it's nice to be a top the leaderboard, or close to the leaderboard. I know Henrik and I were not playing our best today, but unfortunately that's kind of the way it goes. We have had some great putting days the last or the first few days and unfortunately just didn't go our way. For both of us. Just seemed like nothing could get in. But greens are getting a little crusty, they're still in great condition, but the same point in time it's not always easy to get it in when it starts getting that quick and just getting some spike marks every once in a while. I felt like I hit a lot of great putts today that just didn't go in. So that was kind of the idea of the day. Unfortunately, just didn't go my way today. But tomorrow there's one more day, one back, got a lot of guys behind me that are lurking, so to say, and I got to go deep tomorrow.

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Is that a good thing when you say something didn't go your way and you're one shot behind or do you feel like you guys had a chance to maybe get some separation?
BRYSON DECHAMBEAU: We absolutely had a chance to get separation, it just didn't happen. But to still be in it, even though I didn't play my best is great. That means I'm ball striking it really well and hit a couple errant drives but that can easily be fixed on the range afterwards. And then just got to putt a little bit better tomorrow. If I get the ball rolling like I know I can, then it's another story.

Q. Obviously playing alongside Henrik he's been pretty sharp all week. What was your takeaway about how he's looking striking the ball and just as a follow-up, obviously you're one win in what is your feel for the position you're in right now going into tomorrow and to get another one?
BRYSON DECHAMBEAU: Well Henrik knows how to get it done, that's for sure. I could definitely see that there was a different level of comfort compared to me. This is my second time really being this close to the lead on the PGA TOUR. Which is fantastic. I've had a couple other opportunities, but being in the final group on Sunday is a unique position for me, but I'm ready for it, I'm not scared of it, I'll be comfortable tomorrow, I know I will be. And I think that really what I took away was his confidence about his game through each shot, no matter what it always seemed like he was going at a pin or in control whenever he kind of go the it out of control. That was pretty special. He made a couple good putts too. One on 9 was especially nice to keep his round going and that's really it. I don't think there's anything more to take away from it. But tomorrow's going to be an interesting day for sure, there's a lot of people looking to take this title and we'll all be playing well and trying to do our best.

Q. Two years ago final round 66 here after not really three rounds that not much was happening for you. Is there any correlation to for you tomorrow to maybe take some confidence from that experience?
BRYSON DECHAMBEAU: Yeah, thank you for reminding me by the way, I forgot about that.

Q. That's a good number, isn't it?
BRYSON DECHAMBEAU: It is. I think it might get the job done tomorrow. So if I just go with the mindset that I kind of got to attack some flags and take a couple more risks, that's what I have to do and I think if I can do it and successfully pull it off and have my putting there I'm going to have a good chance to win.

Q. You said yesterday that your body wasn't feeling so great last week. Was it your back and what did you do last week to be able to get in the position where you could play this way this week?
BRYSON DECHAMBEAU: Well it was the QL and that really got inflamed for me. It was because my quadratus lumborum wasn't working, my illiacus, longissimus thoracis, they were all kind of over working, if you want to get technical on that. But they weren't working very well and I overworked them. Pretty much my lower right back was hurting and I rested it. How about that?

Q. I think that's the harder thing to do when you're a young player that the easy thing is to just say oh I'll gut it out. Like can you --

Q. Can you talk about that decision.
BRYSON DECHAMBEAU: Yeah, I could have gutted it out, probably, but it would have been a big detriment to me. I felt like if I was able to be ready for this week that would be a lot more prudent than trying to push through last week and to be injured for this week as well. So I took three days off, I literally didn't do anything and that's really the first time I've done that in my entire life I've never actually taken three days off where I didn't touch a club, Saturday on my butt the whole day and did nothing. I watched TV. I watched Netflix. So that was unique for me and actually took me some time to acclimate to that, my body to get comfortable to get in a rested state. And then once it finally was able to rest, it healed a little bit and I was able to make a run for it this week.

Q. Could we go with sitting on your butt or sitting on your gluteus maximus, what do you prefer that?
BRYSON DECHAMBEAU: Either one is fine. If you want to get technical you know what it is.

Q. I don't recall, I wasn't at Phoenix, but I seem to recall you were right up there going into the last day, tied or one behind or something like that. The point being, how much in a same season does that kind of experience help going into tomorrow?
BRYSON DECHAMBEAU: Tremendous. It makes me feel like I can be a top contender in the world one day. I know I'm not, I feel like I'm trending that way, but at the same point in time I got to get there, I'm not there yet. All these experiences are going to help me tremendously being near the lead with Henrik and Rory right behind me and Rose right behind me as well it's going to be a great confidence booster tomorrow. Whatever happens, it's going to be a great learning experience.

Q. What were you watching on Netflix while you were resting?
BRYSON DECHAMBEAU: The Walking Dead. I love it. I'm a weirdo when it comes to that. But that and a couple Marvel movies, just to pass the time. Walking Dead, oh, yeah.

Q. You mentioned that you played here back in 2016 as an amateur. What part of your game since then has improved and also if you have to give advice to a collegiate golfer, that are wanting to go to the next level what would you give them?
BRYSON DECHAMBEAU: Well, to answer your second question, I think that you have to have a lot of patience. That's one thing that I didn't have. Consequently it kind of got me into trouble, I tried new things really quickly out of the gate that as ultimately it's made me the player I am today, which is great but cost me a little bit on the front end. That was quite unfortunate. But I would say my game has changed massively in regards to a couple years ago. My golf swing's totally evolved, putting, totally different, and I'm a lot more knowledgeable around the greens. I can definitely tell you that. I know how to do some cool things that I once didn't understand. Most people criticize me for all my clubs being the same length and, oh, you have such a long wedge, you can't make it work. It's only this much longer (Indicating) it's not that much and people don't realize that. I just didn't know how to chip. So that's evolved in a great way. My putting has evolved in a great way. I'm becoming more confident on the shorties, which is fantastic. And then even on the 8-footers to 12-footers I'm starting to make more putts, even though today wasn't a great day, it's still going to teach me a lot about my nerves, my confidence level, and everything. But in regards to my game, it's totally changed from a couple years ago and six months doesn't do it, I had that little time to prepare and that didn't do it one bit of justice. I thought that I would have it. But obviously I didn't and I'm just finally starting to learn.

Q. Does it matter, you're going into the last day here one behind Henrik, one ahead of Rory, does it matter that it's Henrik and Rory differently than it would if it was Chez Reavie, Brendan Steele?
BRYSON DECHAMBEAU: No there's -- everybody out here is fantastic. They're incredible players. Yes, albeit they're Major winners -- it's just golf, it's one round. And anything can truly happen. So I mean if it was, like you said, Chez Reavie or whoever it was I'm still going to take it in the same light that we still got to get after it, because everybody can shoot 64 or 65 out here.

Q. 66?
BRYSON DECHAMBEAU: 66 even, yeah. Yeah. But you know what I mean. Like it could happen. Anybody can have an unbelievable day and have it be their championship because of that. So personally I think that, yes, it's just cool, I think it's really cool. I mean I never thought, shoot, a year ago when I was struggling missing all those cuts and stuff that I would be here right now, but I am, I persevered and get to play in an incredible place, but in regards to your question, I think that they're unbelievable golfers and, yes, we just have to get after it tomorrow. And I have to get after it tomorrow, if you want to be more on it.

Q. Technical.
BRYSON DECHAMBEAU: Technical. Yeah. I'm just trying to be nice.

Q. You probably did not think that you would get to play a Sunday with Tiger lurking either, given the state of his physical problems. What does that mean to you that you starting out are getting to have this experience with him?
BRYSON DECHAMBEAU: Well, he really is what pushed me to be a better golfer growing up. He's the reason why we have all as youngsters have become really, really good. We all looked up to him and loved seeing what he did, his fist pumps, his celebrations and the excitement he brought to the game. So for a long time when I did kind of get out here a little bit, he was never here and it was a sore disappointment to have him not be here. Honestly, it was sad. He was the face of the game for so long and he still is, honestly. He still moves the needle. He clearly -- you see it the crowds out here this week, last week, at every tournament he goes to, just hypes it up more. We all want to play better because he's there. We want to show him, hey, this is kind of what you did for all of us. It's almost like attribute to him in a sense. I thank him for that and I think he's going to do very well moving forward and he's going to be a really good contender in the Majors this year and just going to be fun to see what happens.

Q. I understand he tried your he tried your clubs on the range at one of the other tournaments and then quickly moved on. Is that true?
BRYSON DECHAMBEAU: What? Oh, he tried, well --

Q. Your clubs, he didn't quite hit them as well as you do.
BRYSON DECHAMBEAU: No, no, they're so unique and different and it's how I trained, how I grew up and obviously he trained and grew up differently than I did. Clearly. But he tried them and was like, here you go, you can have them back.


And that's how it goes. But he did. He just wanted to see what it was like. Yeah, it wasn't good.

Q. I wandered around the turf today and watched you hit shots, well struck today and like you said maybe you'll go flag hunting tomorrow. Good luck with all of that. You're playing with some of the old seasoned fellows. A question was asked about using the bigger grips and I was just curious, you're using the JumboMax grips.

Q. How many players have had curiosity and been trying out your clubs over the last season or so?
BRYSON DECHAMBEAU: Everybody has curiosity, everybody grows up a little different and trains themselves a little differently. I was fortunate enough to try them in 2011 and realized that the JumboMax grips really worked for me in the way I gripped it, I couldn't grip it in the palm with small grips and so as I started to go there, that grip allowed me to control the club a lot better, and ultimately the club face a lot better because I had more surface area across the whole hand and I was able to kind of feel it a lot better and ultimately it's made me the player that I am today and I can't thank them enough.

Q. So what's been sort of the facial reactions and the body English when people pull out your club and start swinging them?
BRYSON DECHAMBEAU: They're like, what is this, how do I even swing. But I'm just like just think of it kind of like a tennis racket in a sense, like you're swinging a tennis racket from the ground.

Q. So they start to open up their mind?
BRYSON DECHAMBEAU: Absolutely. It's a great learning experience for anybody. To try something different is not necessarily a bad thing. Going down a rabbit hole is not that bad, you just got to know when to kind of cut it off relative to what you've trained and done for so long. So for the guys out here, they have used smaller grips their whole lives and I just kind of trained myself with those big grips. Do I think they're a huge benefit in the long run for everybody if they ever started with it? Yeah, absolutely. But the game is, as it it's such a tradition to have small grips and so that's kind of the thing that I got to be cautious of, too, I don't want to push anybody to use it or anything.

Q. I made a major league study on the big grip, because I had a coach by the name of Moe Norman up in Canada, of course he had a big grip, but then it was discovered that eight-time winner of the Order of Merit of Europe, Colin Montgomerie had 10 layers of tape under his --
BRYSON DECHAMBEAU: I know Bubba Watson has a lot of tape.

Q. He has 13 layers, yes.
BRYSON DECHAMBEAU: Yeah, so it just depends on how you grew up and how you trained and what you're comfortable with as well but at the same time JumboMax works really well for me.

Q. Did you guys get put on the clock at all today?
BRYSON DECHAMBEAU: No, no, thank goodness. I'm tired of that. I don't think I'm that slow a player. Yes, I'm very methodical on the greens, absolutely. When I'm over a shot, I don't take too long, the chipping always gets me. Little slower on the greens, trying to walk it off and then I've got to walk back 20 yards and so that takes a little more time. But I've been really cautious about that and I've been trying to speed up our process and try to make it a little more smooth so that doesn't happen. Because I'm aware of it, yeah, I don't want to get 10 timings in a year, that's never what anybody ever wants to get. You don't want to be called the slow guy on TOUR and I don't try to be, I walk really quickly to the ball. Because it's unfortunate because if you got a guy that's walking slow and they're behind, like they hit it short of you and I walk up quick to my ball and I'm ahead of them I can't walk in front of them, so I got to wait for them to slowly walk. So there's just this misfit of things that sometimes doesn't work. But luckily enough I've kind of been able to manage it pretty well.

THE MODERATOR: Thanks, Bryson.

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