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October 6, 2019

Kevin Na

Las Vegas, Nevada

THE MODERATOR: Like to welcome in the champion of the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open. Kevin, an emotional victory for you in your hometown, in a place where you earned your first PGA TOUR victory. How does it feel?

KEVIN NA: It feels great. Yeah, it' a place where I got my first win. Hometown, local support. What more can you ask for? My family was here. My father got to see me win for the first time in his life.

Very special day.

THE MODERATOR: It got interesting for you in the last few holes. Can you talk about the stretch in the playoff?

KEVIN NA: I think I need to go all the way back to No. 10. I was in a pretty comfortable lead. As good as I was playing there was no doubt I was going to win, and then I felt like I had a decent chip and I thought it was within five feet for a par. I see the ball slowly rolling over the green, and then all of sudden I walk out with a triple.

It was hard to shake it off, but I made some great putts coming down the stretch.

16 I hit a good shot, a little cut there with a 5-iron, and I wasn't actually worried about the water. I thought I had plenty of club. I don't know if it was just a little short or right, but when I heard the crowd I was really surprised that the ball went in the water.

I looked at Kenny and said, We're still in this thing. Let's regroup.

17 I hit a great shot and ball was coming in from the left. If it's a foot left that thing comes down maybe 15 feet to the hole and I got a putt for birdie. Instead it hits the slope and goes hard right and I'm on the downslope of a bunker. I have absolutely no shot at the flag, because if I hit it at the flag it's going in the water.

I hit a good shot to just keep it on the green, and to make that 25-footer, and I was just grinding, grinding everything I can to make that putt.

I'm sure my emotions showed that.

THE MODERATOR: We'll open it up for questions.

Q. (Regarding his father seeing him win for the first time.)
KEVIN NA: No. My mother has seen me win here. Second win, Greenbrier, nobody was there. Colonial was wife and the baby. Then this week everybody, my mother, father, wife, baby. Leo is at home so he's kind of here, so it' okay.

So everybody was here.

Q. Very special.
KEVIN NA: Definitely very special.

Q. Your father's name?
KEVIN NA: Y-o-n-g, Yong Na. My father is the one who got me in the game of golf.

Q. (Regarding Tiger texting.)
KEVIN NA: I hope so. I'm hoping he texts me. If not, I'm going to be texting him. You know, during the Playoffs I had the birth of my second child where I missed the BMW Championship. I was injured quite a bit last season. I only played 19 events, which is six to seven short of my normal. I usually play 26, so that is actually seven short of my normal.

So I was a little bit behind on the points, but, I mean, I got two wins in this calendar year, so hopefully he's keeping an eye on me. I could make some putts. I'm a good match play player. I don't know. I keep trying to sell myself. Hopefully he considers me.

Q. Congratulations. Your knowledge of this course, knowing where not to hit it, is that what got you through the back nine?
KEVIN NA: Where not to hit it, where it hit it, all that. I know this golf courses very well. I used to live around this area before I moved to Southern Highlands. But, you know, I think it was -- I really felt like I was the favorite. The local support, local crowds cheering for me really helped me, especially when things weren't going well had the back nine.

I was able to get some good energy from them, and I think they really helped me get this win.

Q. Can you share what you said in Korean on the golf Channel interview?
KEVIN NA: Yeah, I just said it took a lot of hard work. I thanked the fans for believing in me, cheering for me. Just sending a message back home.

Q. You mentioned making putts. You actually set a record for most feet of putts in a PGA TOUR event since we've been keeping that stat in 2003.
KEVIN NA: What is it?

Q. 500 and 60 something feet.
KEVIN NA: I think today was not a very good day either.

Q. Can you just run through how obviously important that is? It's like 14 strokes in strokes gained. Clearly that's lights out stuff.
KEVIN NA: Yeah, I mean, I feel like I'm a pretty good putter. I'm a player that I feel like I get better as I get closer to the greens. That's a strength of my game, a part of my game that gets stronger.

Putter got hot this week. Tends to do that sometimes, and when it does, if I'm hitting it halfway decent I feel like I can win.

Yeah, like I said again, people were asking, What kind of putter is that? What kind of shaft is it? It's a Toulon Madison putter with an graphite shaft. I been just pouring everything in.

Q. Just going to say, you're obviously going to keep using it, but at some point you might want to dip it in gold or something.
KEVIN NA: I should have kissed it after I won. I'll give it a kiss when I get home.

Q. Can you talk about how difficult it is playing those holes in the sun time after time? It's getting darker and darker and the sun is blazing.
KEVIN NA: Yes, obviously second shot into 16 and second shot into 18, and both have water. You can't -- it's hard to get a good line. I think my first -- in regulation, my second shot I didn't feel like I hit that bad of a shot. I asked my caddie, Where is it? He said, It's way right. I was really surprised.

During the playoff I tilted my head left so I could get a little bit of my hat covering the sun to make sure I lined up correctly. But it's really difficult when you're going straight into the sun.

THE MODERATOR: All right, Kevin, thank you so much for your time and congratulations again.

KEVIN NA: Thanks, guys.

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