June 21, 2022
Bethesda, Maryland, USA
Congressional Country Club (Blue Course)
THE MODERATOR: We'll get things started here at the KPMG Women's PGA Championship with World No. 3 Minjee Lee. Two-time winner so far this year. Major champion already this year. You've added a second major to your rÃ©sumÃ©. How exciting was that, that win, to help propel you to a great season?
MINJEE LEE: Just such a dream come true. Kind of a speechless moment for me. It was super special. To be able to do it at Pine Needles, I think it was a little more extra special.
Yeah, no, it's been really good. I played last week, and I had the week off before that, so it's been good.
THE MODERATOR: Pine Needles, of course, extra special because of the connection back home, the connection to Webby. It's my first time seeing you since then. What did Webby have to say to you when you got to chat with her afterwards?
MINJEE LEE: She left me a voice mail because I missed her first call, and she kind of was choking up a little bit. It was really nice. She left me a really nice message. I just saw her last night, so it was really good, yeah.
THE MODERATOR: She's, of course, a past champion here at the KPMG. Is this your first time out here to Congressional?
MINJEE LEE: Yes, it's my first time.
THE MODERATOR: What do you think about this venue? It's spectacular.
MINJEE LEE: I haven't been out yet because my clubs just came yesterday, last night. I hear that it's really amazing. I know Greeny really loves it, and I think it's just about to be a great week.
THE MODERATOR: What about this event is so special? We've seen how much it's grown over the last few years since KPMG and PGA of America joined in. We've just seen this event get bigger and bigger. What about this event makes it so special?
MINJEE LEE: I just think we go to such amazing venues, and I guess we haven't really been to many of the past ten years or so. So I think just KPMG and PGA of America bringing us to such historic venues, I think that's one thing.
Just the hospitality and the way the tournament is run, it's always so well done. I think just the challenge of -- like the PGA of America really, I think, sets the course up really well, so a good challenge for us. I think that's why I really love it.
Q. Minjee, now that you have the major championship sort of out of the way, do you feel pressure lifted as you enter another major?
MINJEE LEE: Probably more after Evian just because it was my first year, and the U.S. Open kind of was a different situation. I had the lead, and then I was kind of protecting my lead.
I think definitely after Evian I got a little less pressure, like a monkey off my back, but I think going into the U.S. Open and all the other majors I think I have a bit, I don't know, a little more confidence playing in them. Yeah, I think more confident than extra pressure.
Q. There are a lot of players who have always said, look, the major championships define me. Jack Nicklaus was one of those. Are you that type of player, or are you a player that enters every tournament viewing them the same?
MINJEE LEE: Definitely, obviously, the majors mean a little bit more, but I think at the end of the day if I'm a good person, that's what defines me more than my golf, so I like to be a good person before a good player, I guess.
Q. When you play a course that you haven't been at before, especially at a major, how does that change preparation, if at all, as opposed to somewhere you've been before?
MINJEE LEE: Today is going to be the first day I see the golf course, so I think I'll just kind of soak it in a bit and test the grass out a little bit and try and adjust what was different from last week to this week.
So I think my first look I always try to look at everything and try to see where it's good to miss and all those kind of things. Obviously, tomorrow we have another practice, so I'll probably play nine on the nine that I think I need more work on.
Q. I know it's your first time at this course, but have you been in the D.C. area before? Is it your first time to the Nation's Capital?
MINJEE LEE: No, I have been to D.C. I actually went on like a big tour with my grandparents when I was little, so I do remember coming here.
Q. Does it mean anything more to you and your fellow players to be at a course where women haven't played majors, women haven't played a lot of big tournaments? Does that mean anything more to you personally?
MINJEE LEE: I think personally, yes, because we haven't really had the opportunity, but obviously, now that we do, I think maybe it feels a bit more special to be here, and maybe we can create our own history from now, yeah.
Q. What have you heard about Congressional since you haven't gotten to play it yet, and did you scope out anything online or what kind of research did you do?
MINJEE LEE: I just scrolled through Instagram pretty much. Just looked it up. I think just the words that I kind of thought about was, like, pure. It's going to be, I think, really challenging as well.
My caddie actually told me some holes even if you hit a good shot, you might not be rewarded. Patience is the key around here.
THE MODERATOR: How else do you approach a situation like that where your caddie gives you that sort of advice ahead of time?
MINJEE LEE: Every major is a patience test. I think I already knew that in my heart anyway, so he just tells me, and I'm, like, oh, okay.
Q. So what would it mean to have another major? I know you talked about being a good person, which is really refreshing to hear. Good person first; good golfer second. What would it mean to win another, have another big trophy in your trophy case?
MINJEE LEE: This trophy, I really want it because it's so big. (Laughing). I really want to hold it up.
Two majors in one season, that's just overtaken my dreams, so I think it would be really, really special. And, obviously, good play is going to result in maybe a win or contending, so I think I'm just going to focus on that. Obviously, it would be another dream come true if I did win.
THE MODERATOR: Looking at your results here, this is your eighth time in this event. You've never missed the cut.
MINJEE LEE: I haven't?
THE MODERATOR: Handful of top ten finishes. You really seem to thrive in major championships. What is it about that that seems to suit you?
MINJEE LEE: I think just the challenge. I like to embrace the challenge, and I think the harder the golf courses get, I think the better I play. You do have to focus a little bit more on smaller details, so I think that's where I kind of excel. When I play under pressure, that is where I excel as well. I think it just really sets up well.
THE MODERATOR: One other major question before I close things down. I got to go to The Country Club last week, and I watched your brother play around a little bit. What was that experience like for him, and did you get to watch any of that at all for him?
MINJEE LEE: He didn't really come out on the coverage, but he posted a few highlights. I think he had an amazing week. First U.S. Open, just soaking it all in. He just said it was really tough, so I'm sure he will get to play a lot more. I just think it's kind of a dream come true for him to be able to play in the majors.
THE MODERATOR: Last thing, I'll just ask, I know you haven't been out to Congressional yet -- or been out on the course. What are you most looking forward to seeing when you are out there?
MINJEE LEE: I think just some really tough holes. I know that it's going to be a test, but I think the harder it is, the better. So we'll see how we go.
THE MODERATOR: Good luck out there thanks, Minjee.
MINJEE LEE: Thank you.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports