home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


June 18, 2008

J.J. Henry


CHRIS REIMER: Welcome JJ. Thanks for spending a couple minutes with us here. Why don't you just get us started by talking about you're from the area. You're past champion here. Just talk about your good vibes coming back to this place.
J. J. HENRY: Well, obviously been pretty well documented in the fact that 'O6 was kind of storybook for me in the fact that of all places to necessarily win your first event in a place where as a young boy I'd come out and be out watching the guys hit the balls and be our here sitting on a hole with my dad or family, friends or whoever it was and then to walk up to the 72nd hole in 2006 with a three-shot lead in here, 50,000 people from the state of Connecticut screaming your name, you know, extremely special and very rewarding, if you will, and I can't think of a better place to kind of get it going again is right here this week.
I feel like I'm pretty close to -- this year hasn't been a real great start for me, similar to a lot of other years. For some reason -- this is my eighth year on Tour -- I've never played extremely well at the start of the year. I've always been kind of a second-half-of-the-year player, and it's just a great feeling to be home with a lot of support, friends and family out here, and I'm excited to hopefully get it going this week.

Q. Speaking of support, I know you've been working hard with the Henry House Foundation. Can you talk a little bit about that?
J. J. HENRY: It's -- you know, actually we have a special announcement, I think, today that I don't know if some of you, some of you aren't aware of, myself, my wife and the Henry House Foundation are excited to announce that the partnership with the First Tee in Connecticut, we're excited with the fact that basically to help support youth, the growth of the game of golf through children, through youth, through life skills, and that we couldn't think of a better way to help parallel that with both the First Tee of Connecticut. I'm sure some of you have seen the new driving range here is unbelievable, really, blew me away, to be honest with you. This is the first time I've really seen it done was today, and to be out here to kind of see the future site of the First Tee on the left side of the driving range and we're excited to be a part of building, arbuably, the nicest first tee in all the country, and between up here and as well as kind of the Fairfield-Bridgeport First Tee where actually I kind of grew up, I'm excited to be able to help give back to children and kind of further the game of golf of kids in our area.
CHRIS REIMER: Great work. Open it up to questions.

Q. What kind of happened this year? It's June now and you've had a --
J. J. HENRY: Yeah. I wish I knew, Bruce. To be honest with you, my game feels as good as it's ever felt. It's kind of been one round or so that's really set me back. It was a good Sunday round from The Players Championship from the top, probably a Top 10 finish anyway. I was leading Bay Hill after 32 holes, playing great, and then I just kind of lost it on Saturday, and I played great again on Sunday, so it seems to be just kind of one day that I feel kind of unsure of myself. If it was every week where I'm playing bad and I'm doing things, but I'm just not putting four together, and unfortunately, obviously as you know, that's what you have to do out here to play consistent.
So that being said, you know, I enjoyed -- unfortunately I didn't qualify for The Open last week, and I didn't play the week before in Memphis, so I had two weeks off, and I was rested and kind of anxious to play this week. And actually, I watched some tapes of when I won back in '06. I thought that was something to kind of get me fired up and excited to be here. And believe it or not, for the first time, I watched a lot of tapes of the Ryder Cup, too, back in '06. As bad as we got beat, I felt like I played pretty good golf that week, and so to kind of watch that and then watch me win it again in '06 kind of got me fired up to get going again.

Q. Anything in those tapes, J. J., you picked out?
J. J. HENRY: Not really. I mean I really don't. My game really feels good. I think it's more of just being confident and not really worrying about results. It's easy to say and it's hard to do sometimes, but I think I've gotten caught up a little bit, trying too hard a little bit, maybe expecting too much or just letting it happen, and for one reason or another it just hasn't quite panned out. I mean I know I've been out here long enough. I know I'm a good enough player to where I'll have my weeks. It's just a question of when.

Q. Is it your focus? I know your wife's pregnant. You've had this Henry House stuff.
J. J. HENRY: Yeah. There's no question. You know, hey, things happen in life that are bigger than golf. Obviously we're expecting our second child in August. I'm excited about that. Not to say it's been a distraction, but you know, obviously my wife had a little hard time. She was quite sick -- not quite sick. Everything is fine with the baby, but maybe she wasn't feeling quite well at the start, which you know, things you have to deal with in life that not necessarily was a distraction in my golf, but maybe you were maybe not as focused all the time on golf as opposed to more important things, but again, I'm excited about the second half of the year is the way I look at it, and I've got a lot of tournaments coming up that I enjoy playing, this obviously being one of them, and I'm going to make the best of the situation.

Q. J. J., we talked about the second half of the year and all that stuff. You actually talk to groups and realize the realization that as each year passes you get more and more new faces on the Tour and the Tour is getting even stronger and making it that much more difficult to win out here?
J. J. HENRY: Well, I mean anybody that plays at this level knows it's extremely difficult to win. I think that's why it's incredible to watch what Tiger does. I mean almost every week he plays to even be in the hunt. I mean the depth of field now, from when I first got on Tour, there's probably 120 guys every week out here that have a chance to win, and you know, you gotta take advantage of it when you can, you know, being the fact that you never really know when you're going to get that hot streak or you get that break and all of a sudden you have a great Saturday round and you have a chance to win and you're in the hunt and you gotta really take advantage of it I think.
And hypothetically looking back at what Rocco did, gosh, he's probably still on Cloud 9 with the situation last week, but looking back, he's obviously going to be pretty disappointed that, gosh, that was his chance, but that's a great point. The fields are deep out here, and obviously the best golfers in the world want to play the PGA Tour, and I'm grateful with the chance every week I tee it up I get to beat the best players in the world, or try to beat, if you will. Compete. Hopefully beat.

Q. Can you take us back to the First Tee for a minute? What exactly is the scope of the Henry House involved with the First Tee?
J. J. HENRY: Well, it's really two-fold. There's the financial commitment on our part that we're excited to really kind of help, and you know, add credibility, if you will, to hear someone who's won this event, who's from the state of Connecticut, who wants to see other children from the state enjoy the game of golf and learn a lot of the life skills and lessons that golf has given me and others throughout the years as well as the opportunity that, you know, I can help promote and raise more money so we can really kind of initiate what the primary goal is is to have, you know, the best First Tee anywhere, and I think with what we've seen and the practice holes being built and the things in place, we're really kind of on that road to great success.

Q. We all know what's happening here, with the four holes they're building and the practice year-round thing, you mentioned the Fairfield and Bridgeport, what's set up for down there?
J. J. HENRY: Well, we're still talking. Actually, we're lucky to have the two gentlemen in the back of the room, Bruce and Barry, that really kind of helped instrument the First Tee and run it, and they'd probably be more -- we're just excited. We thought it would be the perfect opportunity this week to at least kind announce of our commitment and announce the fact that we want to be a part of it. We think it's a great thing. It's a great asset to our community, and I don't necessarily want it -- it's basically all tangible projects in the fact that -- you know, our mission at the Henry House is not to say, here's a check for X amount of money and have a hand shake and do a big thing and a picture and then we're done with it.
Our thing is we want to help build the facility or whether it's, you know, the classroom or the driving range, or you know, a tangible, see-feel-touch thing, and we're trying to similar do the thing closer to where I grew up in Southern Connecticut there in Fairfield and Bridgeport. It's just a question of what makes the most sense at the time.

Q. How long have you had your foundation?
J. J. HENRY: I started it in 2006, kind of the fall of 2006. You know, obviously it was a chance for me playing golf -- I mean I'm sure as you all know, gosh, the PGA Tour gives more money to charity as a whole than all the other sports combined, and playing in a lot of functions, I always felt I wanted to give back to where I grew up and where I live now. And I didn't want to necessarily do it, though, until I felt like I don't want to say made it, but until I really felt like I was established, if you will, on Tour. So I figured after I won, after I made the Ryder Cup, it was kind of the perfect time to kind of -- and I'm not saying we're trying to do too much too early -- we're still -- and don't get me wrong. My focus is still on trying to play the best golf I can, but at the same time it's great to be able to have a great executive director in Mike Flynn spend time who really helps dot the I's, cross the T's and really kind of look into the future, if you will, about what we're trying to accomplish. And you know, again, it's kind of neat and rewarding. It's one thing to make a putt in the last hole to win a tournament, but it's kind of cool to look back and see kind of -- we've actually just finished a team room down in Cook Children's Hospital in Fort Worth, Texas, where I live now, and had a big lunch the week of Colonial at Crown Plaza, who was the title sponsor. And it was pretty rewarding to see the smile on these kids' faces when they came in and had plasma TV and computers and stuff, air hockey, and especially when some of these kids might never be able to leave the hospital, to be able to kind of be with the kids for a while, to let them play and have a good time, it was pretty neat.

Q. (Inaudible)?
J. J. HENRY: Did they show that this week? Did they have some stuff? I'd love to look at that. I didn't get a chance to see that.

Q. J. J., thanks for spending time with us.
J. J. HENRY: Thanks, guys. Appreciate it.

End of FastScripts

About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297