October 16, 2022
Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Royal Greens Golf & Country Club
THE MODERATOR: We welcome from Team Smash GC our winner Brooks Koepka, and second-place finisher Peter Uihlein who also just secured No. 3 in the individual overall championship,
Q. Brooks, can you sum up the day as a team, everything on the line?
BROOKS KOEPKA: Yeah, honestly, been playing very well -- Pete kind of led the way the last few weeks. We've had to play good. We played good in Boston, we did, and it's nice to see everybody play well and everybody contribute and shoot some good scores. It was difficult. It was windy.
So coming down 18, I just wanted to make sure that the team thing was wrapped up before me and Pete could kind of go at it.
Q. Did you know all the monetary things that were on the line?
PETER UIHLEIN: Yeah, unfortunately they told me about this this morning. I kind of had an idea what was going on. Afterwards, I had no idea, until the award presentation, and I found out. Consolation.
Q. Great shots down the stretch to stay in the playoff.
PETER UIHLEIN: Yeah, just coming back -- fought back and I played solid on the back. Holed some nice putts for par. I felt like if I can keep staying one back of the lead going into the last couple I could at least give myself a chance.
Yeah, you've got to hit some great shots in the playoff. Birdied it every time. It's hard to beat that.
Q. Brooks, could you speak about your own road to this win. It sounded like on the broadcast you had some doubts about your career. I know you've battled some injuries here going back a couple years. Where were you just when you started out with LIV in terms of your health, and then getting to this point?
BROOKS KOEPKA: I mean, it's been before LIV, when I blue my knee out and my foot was pointed that way, almost backwards and sideways. Credit to Dr. ElAttrache. Throw his name out there. I still -- I mean, eventually I'm going to have to have knee replacement in a few years, but I didn't know what was -- I wasn't sure whether I could even move the same way and if I want to play if I could move the way I wanted. I'm fortunate be in the spot that I'm in right now.
Q. Is this the knee that you injured in the string of 2021?
BROOKS KOEPKA: Yeah.
Q. When you came back at the Masters?
BROOKS KOEPKA: Yeah, I dislocated and shattered my kneecap and I tore my patellar or MPFL and done a bunch of things. In the left one, I did my patella tendon.
Q. The prize money, what does it mean to win $4 million?
BROOKS KOEPKA: It's nice.
CHASE KOEPKA: Feels that good --
BROOKS KOEPKA: I didn't say that. It's really nice. Honestly to me the big thing today was getting the team win. I told my brother I'd buy him a Lambo if he we won the team thing, so no, I've got to go buy one.
Q. How will you --
CHASE KOEPKA: Lime green. It's going to be awhile.
BROOKS KOEPKA: Getting him a new car, anyway. It's all right.
Q. As a team, I think if you add it up, it's about 7 million.
PETER UIHLEIN: It's okay. Yeah, still a good chunk of change and the team, yeah, we're peaking for Miami, which is what we want to do.
BROOKS KOEPKA: That's the big thing.
Q. What made you turn the corner?
PETER UIHLEIN: Just happy. Just a lot happier out here than I have been the last five years playing on TOUR. The team aspect of it I like. I was never really a fan of the lone wolf kind of thing that we had to do. But being a part of the team, practicing, hanging out, kind of like college. It resonates with me and sticks with me. I really like it.
So yeah, I mean, whether or not I've started playing better because I'm happier again or the atmosphere, I won't be I don't know. But I feel like I'm in a lot better place want I was.
Q. Can you talk about chase and how well he has played over the past two tournaments, especially, how proud are you of him?
BROOKS KOEPKA: I couldn't prouder. It's obviously fun to build the team up and get to see him a lot more. We've become closer because of it which is special for me. I know my family is probably loving it as well. And it's honestly just been really good to see. I think you might have the best scoring average on Sunday, bar London, for the last, what, six events. He's played really solid. He's been very consistent. Shows up when we need him and on Sundays, he's right there, so it's been fun.
Pete's played really well and then Jas, he's going to play well in Miami, I can promise you that. He's trending in the right way just like I feel like I was, Chase is and Pete. Being in that, I think, 5-spot, I think we've locked that up. Yeah, I kept thinking about it all week, being able to pick who we are going to play is going to be important. We're excited for Miami. I think everyone is playing really well and that's what we need.
Q. Can you guys talk about the team concept?
JASON KOKRAK: Yeah, practicing together, we saw Brooks playing some incredible golf. We've seen Pete all year play really, really well. Chase has been absolutely solid from top to bottom all year. I've been kind of bragging behind but I show up when they need me. I'm looking forward to Miami. I think we've got a good group and we are all trending in the right direction and we are all starting to play our best golf. I don't think anybody wants to play us in match play right now.
CHASE KOEPKA: Yeah, it was really fun today to play with Jason. I think we were definitely pushing each other out there today. We both made some really big putts out there. Kind of in the last six, seven holes which is really nice because I mean, these guys were putting on a show out there, and I couldn't catch him out there. So I just wanted to make sure that we locked up that team win today.
And tell you what, the individual wins must feel pretty good but these team wins are pretty cool, too.
Q. For you two guys, you room together, obviously you've known each oath for a long time. Did you ever envision the time when you are battling out here? Did it ever cross your mind?
BROOKS KOEPKA: I don't know, it's pretty cool. We've known each other for so long. That's what you want to do, right. You want to compete with some of your very good friends, go toe-to-toe, and listen, it's only a matter of time before it happens for Pete and Jason as well and hopefully chase. I'm so excited. The team thing has revived me. Like Chase said, it's been special. You're fighting for somebody else other than just yourself, and I think that's really cool.
Q. First of all, congratulations. This win went until the end. What was the thought while you were battling out with Peter throughout these three playoffs?
BROOKS KOEPKA: I think on last one I was thinking it's a good thing they turn the lights on. I thought we were going to be there for awhile. It's always fun battling against your friends, and I think it's special. Lake like I said, Pete is knocking on the door. Our team is just playing really well. I'm excited for that and I think we are all looking forward to Miami.
Q. Congratulations on the win. Can you sum it up, the three days, and this win, and how do you feel about it, and throughout the tournament, how did you feel?
JASON KOKRAK: Pete said it earlier about the team aspect. Brooks sent a couple messages that gave us a nice boost of confidence.
We are all trending in the right direction and we are all trying to get to the top of our games for Miami. To come out on top as a team, I mean, I know Brooks and Pete were battling out for an individual prize but we were all thinking about the team aspect I think a little bit more.
Yeah, we have to take care of our own business and come out on top as a team is a lot of fun.
CHASE KOEPKA: Yeah, we each stepped up for these three days when we needed to. I think we are all just real excited to get to Miami. I know I'm really excited to get in some ac right now. It's been really hot. A lot of water we drank this week.
BROOKS KOEPKA: I just can't wait to hang out with these guys. No offense, but just kind of behind closed doors. I think that's what I'm looking forward to in sharing this. I mean, it's pretty special. Like I said, it's all kind of new to us, the team thing, maybe college was the last time we've seen it. And those wins in college were so much fun.
So I just can't wait to get with these guys and just kind of be alone for a little bit.
PETER UIHLEIN: Yeah, I feel like after six, seven holes in the first round, we were way ahead on the lead. Taking the lead really early and then just basically, I didn't really feel like we got that close to kind of being caught this week. But felt like we were in control all week, and played great and played really solid and everyone contributed. It was a great team victory.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports