January 7, 2021
Kapalua, Maui, Hawaii, USA
Plantation Course at Kapalua
Q. 5-under today, nice start. If we can get some comments on your play.
PATRICK CANTLAY: Yeah, made a couple bogeys that weren't great, otherwise would have been a really nice round. Finished strong, so I'm in a good spot after the first round, my game feels really good and I like this place, so should be a nice weekend.
Q. Did you notice a change from last year, condition-wise?
PATRICK CANTLAY: Yeah, it's a lot softer and so scores should be lower. Also if I remember right last year was a little windier and so I thought today played relatively easy.
Q. Was it not soft last year, given the newness of it?
PATRICK CANTLAY: The fairways were soft last year, but the greens were much firmer, just because they were brand new. And now the greens are a little softer so it's easier to get it close.
Q. Where did you pick up your bogeys?
PATRICK CANTLAY: 1 and 14. 14 was a bad bogey, just hit a bad tee shot in that bunker and made a mess from there on in. But birdied three holes coming in, so nice little bounce back.
Q. Just keeping the negative train going, which one did you not birdie coming in?
PATRICK CANTLAY: 17.
Q. You got to feel like you're keeping some momentum going that you had last fall and for the first round of the new year?
PATRICK CANTLAY: Yeah, I feel like I played well closing out the last year and my game feels really good, it feels like it's in a good spot and I got a good program for getting ready for events right now so I'm really looking forward to this year and it's always nice to start off the year here in Maui.
Q. When you consider the majors and some of the bigger events and then filling in your schedule, is it places you like or is it places you need to get ready for where you're headed?
PATRICK CANTLAY: I think playing well is the best place to get ready for the places that I'm headed and for me that's playing places that I like. So I'm going to play a decent amount, like the California swing and play some of my favorite events this year, like Hilton Head or other places that I played well.
And other than that it's just prepping really well for the majors and I feel like Augusta is one of my favorite spots, so it will be nice to go back there so quickly after we just were there in November.
Q. Is there a place that became a favorite that wasn't initially?
PATRICK CANTLAY: I've learned to enjoy this place. The first year I played it I didn't like it and I just, once you kind of adapt to not hitting any normal shots, it's just not a normal golf course, so once you realize that you're going to hit some goofy shots out there, but that's how you play well, I started to like this place more. I think some of that is just experience, realizing what shot is the right shot out here. Because there's a bunch of elevation change and a bunch of tricky shots out here.
Q. I don't know what your normal diet of tournaments is off the top of my head. But whatever it normally is do you find yourself adding to that this year or just changing?
PATRICK CANTLAY: Depending upon how you count it I might play a few more, just because we played more in the fall due to coronavirus. So depending upon how you want to count them up I might play more this PGA TOUR season, but I don't think I'll necessarily play more for the whole year. I'm usually a low 20s and I feel like quality over quantity's big for me. So I would rather show up to every week feeling like I'm totally ready to go than ever feel like I'm on the road and wishing I was home.
Q. You'll probably play six majors this season.
PATRICK CANTLAY: Yeah, yeah, that's the plan. And that's a welcome change, considering we went so long without playing a major.
Q. The other thing that's a little bit off topic. Without naming names, obviously, have you ever noticed a player who is confidence was greater than his ability? And is there anything you admire about that?
PATRICK CANTLAY: In a weird way I think a lot of people out here are like that. I don't think you get to the top of the game or get to be really successful without having a bit of that. The people that believe in themselves and think that they're the greatest ever usually will do better than the guys that think, Oh, poor me, I'm not very good.
So I think it's hard to strike a balance between being real and telling yourself that you're the greatest in the world when you go to sleep at night, but I think there's a lot of people out here that definitely run that line and maybe err on the side of I'm the best. But that's why they're out here.
Q. So you think that's the majority as opposed to the guys who are pretty talented and don't realize it or don't think that way?
PATRICK CANTLAY: I think a majority of the guys that are really good and have success feel like that and they always feel like, I'm just a couple break as way from really beating up on everybody for an extended period of time.
Like I said, I don't think they could get to where they were without having a little bit of that. There's a little bit of, you wake up in the morning, drive to the course, you're excited about getting to the course, then you get on the range and you're like, I'm going to beat everyone today. And that's part of being a good golfer.
Q. Kind of along those lines, I would think you never necessarily feared anybody or would have thought that your best game can beat anybody in the world?
PATRICK CANTLAY: I feel like when I'm on I can beat anybody and some of my play has definitely proven that to be true.
Q. Did you always think that way or did it take winning in Las Vegas and winning at Memorial to really believe it? I mean, when you won did you look back and think, Man, I was, my belief was stronger there than it needed to be?
PATRICK CANTLAY: Yeah, I think you have to have some of that belief to be able to win and to be able to have that success. But then winning at Memorial against a great field like that, on a great golf course like that is validation of that. So it's a little bit of both. I think some of it is self confirming or momentum. If you do have a lot of success -- there's a difference between showing up to a tournament and hoping that you play well, and then winning. Opposed to going to a tournament, thinking you're going to win and then winning. And if you go to an event thinking you're going to win and you win, that's really powerful going forward.
Q. What if you think you're going to win and you don't? Does that piss you off?
PATRICK CANTLAY: No, you just think you're going to win the next one.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports