July 1, 2001
JACK NICKLAUS: What can I do for you? Got a lot of questions coming.
Q. How disappointing is that? You played well overall.
JACK NICKLAUS: Well, I played well. I had a couple of judgment calls that I made that probably didn't turn out like I wanted them. I was a little surprised that my tee shot at 13 slipped off to the right. I actually thought I hit a pretty good tee shot. Went 234 into the rough. The wind was ripping off that. I was trying to play to the front of the green. The ball went through the green. That cost me a shot. That was the first mistake I made all day, real mistake. Then birdied 14 with a really nice chip. That chip was about a foot away. I thought I holed it like yesterday. I guess I tried to hit the ball back into the hole at 15. I played a 1-iron. I ended, I tried to bump the ball. I ended up with a really deep lie. The ball just exploded. I was lucky to birdie out of the hole. Of course I misjudged the second shot at 16. The ball just didn't go. That was my round. That was what cost me the tournament, those three holes. You can't do that coming down the stretch. Overall I had a good tournament. I played well. I don't have too many complaints. I had a lot of fun. I kind of enjoyed being in the hunt. It's a lot of fun to be in the hunt coming down. And standing on the 10th green I turned around and I said, "You know, I'm a little nervous." I said, "That's good, that's fun."
Q. The crowds always follow you. But when you're in the hunt, do you miss the crowds when you're not in the hunt? Do you find that you miss the crowds when you're in the hunt?
JACK NICKLAUS: Miss the crowds when I'm in the hunt? I didn't miss the crowd. The crowd was right there.
Q. Do you find that you missed the crowd when you're in the hunt?
JACK NICKLAUS: You're saying it backwards, I think. No, I think that the crowd was great. The crowd was very supportive. They're very supportive of all the players. I thought people have always been very enthusiastic up here. They're great sports fans. They were great to me this week. I really appreciated it.
JACK NICKLAUS: Dana made a few too many mistakes like I did. He made his in the middle of the round. It cost himself some strokes. He's obviously a terrific player. He's played terrific golf.
Q. Was it fun to be a little nervous today? What was the difference in your mind in getting it done and just coming close?
JACK NICKLAUS: I just described that a minute ago. I made a couple of mistakes, that I probably shouldn't have made. Sometimes those things would turn out right. Sometimes they don't. The shots that I played didn't turn out right. It's that kind of golf course, too. Having to manufacture some shots, they just didn't quite all come out the way I wanted them.
JACK NICKLAUS: In San Jose I was playing pretty well. I finished fourth there, I think. That was earlier this year. But I haven't been in a major, I haven't played very well for several years. I can't really -- I suppose the Masters in '98 was the last time.
Q. You've won more majors than anyone. Does it bother you less to not win this one?
JACK NICKLAUS: It bothers me any time I don't win. Obviously, you're not going to win all the time. I was very proud of my game and very proud of what I did this week to keep myself together to play. When you haven't -- I said winning breeds winning. And when you haven't been winning, there's not much breeding going on.
Q. That's an interesting comment.
JACK NICKLAUS: If you're talking about those things in generic terms, I guess. But to play that way is kind of fun. It's fun coming down the stretch. It's fun being in the hunt. It's fun giving yourself a chance. And I certainly did that. And the more times that I do that in the future, the better I'm going to play. But when you haven't done it for awhile, it's tough.
JACK NICKLAUS: It's a nice golf course. I enjoyed the golf course very much. I don't know how it rates. I must not be very good at rating courses because I wouldn't rate them the way they rate them.
Q. Losing by one, if somebody came out today, for example, and put up a 64, and beat everybody by five shots --
JACK NICKLAUS: I lost by 2 though. I had my chances. I had a putt at 17 which was really a good putt. It hit the hole and bounced out. It would have given me an opportunity to come into 18. It just didn't happen. I'm disappointed with that, obviously, but you look at the bright side. I haven't been anywhere near for a long time. Take the positive side of it.
JACK NICKLAUS: I said, "Come on, guru, tell me, it's uphill." They didn't tell me it was downhill on the other side. I thought the putt was going to be just about the right speed. And then it picked up speed as it went over the hill. I think that's why it -- we kid each other all week. Scotty is a good kid, and I enjoy having him. Good friend.
Q. How long was that?
JACK NICKLAUS: The putt? Oh, 50 feet probably. I thought it was going to go in. I thought it was going to slow up though. I didn't think it was going to be hitting the hole at that speed. When it went up to the ridge, I thought it would slow up. It looked good, but who knows from 50 feet. If something goes in from there, it's pure luck. The hole got in the way.
Q. Did you hold up well coming in?
JACK NICKLAUS: I was fine.
Q. You expected to make a run at this, I know you hope to win every time you play.
JACK NICKLAUS: You hope to win every time you play. When you don't win, you don't win. As long as you're giving yourself a chance, I think I gave myself a pretty good effort. I was disappointed obviously with the three bogeys I made on the back side. You've got to be disappointed with that. It cost me the tournament. That's the way it goes.
Q. Do you cherish these moments, Jack? You say it's been a while since you've been able to be in contention?
JACK NICKLAUS: You don't cherish it if you lose. You cherish it when you win. All you say when you lose is, "At least I had a chance to win." Maybe that means I'll try a little harder next time. Just don't make some of those mistakes again the next time. At least I know I'm able to play again. I haven't been able to play for a long time. I'm playing better.
Q. What's your next tournament?
JACK NICKLAUS: Senior Players Championship. Okay.
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