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January 6, 2009
DOUG MILNE: Adam, thanks for joining us for a few minutes at the 2009 Mercedes Championship.
If you can assess the state of your game, you have a history of playing well, three Top-10s in three starts, and as you head into the 2009 season, tell us how you are feeling and how you are playing.
ADAM SCOTT: Yeah, I'm feeling not too bad. I'm not really sure how I'm playing. It feels pretty good, although I haven't played for a long time. So it's good to start out here, first week of the year. I've played well here before, so I'm looking forward to that.
Obviously, it's nice to start in Maui; you've won an event the year before. You can get your year off to a fast start with a good week here, so that's really the goal. Just looking forward to playing again. It's been a while.
Q. Can you give us an official update on the knee. Which one was it? How exactly did it happen? How bad did it hurt? How does it feels now, basically?
ADAM SCOTT: Yeah, the knee, it's probably about 90%, it's pretty good. It's not bad. Obviously good enough to be here.
It's not quite a hundred percent. Unfortunately, this course is quite a tough walk, so that's going to be the test for me here this week.
Yeah, I dislocated my kneecap again, which is kind of a common thing with me. It's the sixth time I've done it now. I was running at the beach when it happened, and I twisted my leg and my knee came out.
Q. Who was chasing you?
ADAM SCOTT: I might have been chasing someone (laughter).
Q. Right knee?
ADAM SCOTT: Yeah, right knee.
Q. You were running in the sand?
ADAM SCOTT: I was running out of the water on the sand.
Q. It's your right knee?
ADAM SCOTT: Yeah.
Q. Six times, you've done this?
ADAM SCOTT: Yeah. I just have really hyper-mobile kneecaps. The left one is the same. Yeah, they are just not really good. So, unfortunately, the right one happened so often, it's pretty loose.
And it doesn't affect my golf at all. But obviously have to be quite careful doing anything else.
Q. When was the first time that happened to you?
ADAM SCOTT: When I was in high school. I did it a couple of times in high school. I've actually done it here in Hawaii when I was in college, and a few other times through my career.
Q. And what were you doing the first time you did it?
ADAM SCOTT: I was playing basketball in school, actually.
Q. Is there anything they can do, something where they can surgically repair it, or is it something that you just have to live with?
ADAM SCOTT: The problem is, there are six different surgeries they can do and a different doctor will recommend a different one. There's no foolproof fix for it. As long as it doesn't affect me playing golf, I can get by with it, and I just have to be really careful and maybe cut out some of my extracurricular activities, unfortunately. But that's just the way it is.
I don't really want to go in and have surgery and, like, change my leg, if that could possibly change the way I play golf. So I'll try and last as long as I can without going under the knife.
Q. The ailment you had right around Augusta, and it took from a long time, I believe, to shake that off; what was that? Didn't you get the flu or something like that?
ADAM SCOTT: Yeah, it was recurring tonsillitis that I had a few times last year. I saw all of the doctors at home when I got home, and that's what it was. He recommended I rest a little more and not run around so much. So I've been doing a bit of that.
My plan this year is certainly a lot less travel. So I think that might help. But he didn't recommend having them out just yet. He said try and keep a little more well rested.
Q. What do you mean by a lot less travel, in terms of your scheduling?
ADAM SCOTT: It doesn't really change my schedule. I think from March, I'm going to stay in America for a couple of months. Where normally I'd leave and go back to Europe or Australia, I'm going to base out of America for a few months once I go back for the Match Play travel-wise in that respect.
Q. Where do you go from here?
ADAM SCOTT: I play Sony and then Qatar, and then I'm off until the Match Play.
Q. Along those lines, when it comes to global golf, do you see it as a responsibility or obligation that young players have to play all over the world, or just an opportunity?
ADAM SCOTT: It's an opportunity, yeah. I don't think it's a responsibility necessarily. I think being from Australia, that's the only way I ever saw the game of golf, was all around the world, all of the guys performing, playing all around the world, and that's what I grew up imagining I would do, and I did. And I enjoy playing all around the world. It's definitely an opportunity.
I don't think it's necessarily a responsibility, but it certainly doesn't hurt anyone's game to experience golf all around the world.
Q. To take that one step further, do you think because of the way things are economically on this tour, and I'm sure on other tours, that your responsibilities to sponsors, and to tournaments and to Pro-Am partners or whatever it may be, are a little different than what it may have been back in the heyday?
ADAM SCOTT: Yeah, look, I think certainly sponsors will be wanting a little more for their money. They certainly put up a lot of money and they deserve to get a lot out of it, a lot out of us. I think they should. I think it would be a shame if it was just because the economy is bad that now everyone is going to put in a little bit more. I think they should anyway. I hope it's not that big of a change that the players have to make. Certainly the TOUR is going to feel the heat of the economy just like everyone else. If you have to put in a little extra to keep things the way they are and keep it the strongest tour out here, that's what we have got to do.
Q. Have you personally noticed any difference whatsoever, impacting your life out on TOUR or out on the professional tours?
ADAM SCOTT: I haven't really been out lately. So, no, I'm just catching up with everyone this week and finding out what's going on.
Q. You said you were going to stay in the States for the Match Play through, when, the U.S. Open?
ADAM SCOTT: I haven't really -- yeah, at least through -- yeah, probably around that time.
Q. Are you going to have a base?
ADAM SCOTT: Yeah, I think I'm going to go to Florida for a couple months. That makes travelling seem really easy because flights are so short from the tournaments back to Florida.
Q. Are you going to break down and buy a house or is that too early?
ADAM SCOTT: No, see how I go along. Rent one for now.
Q. Earlier you were talking about --
ADAM SCOTT: I heard there might be some bargains. (Laughter).
Q. Earlier you were talking about extracurricular activities; have you thought about retiring from surfing until the end of your playing career?
ADAM SCOTT: Yeah, no, that's not going to happen. (Smiling). I haven't had a problem with surfing. But surfing is something I love to do, and I'm not surfing at the moment until -- probably not surfing until after Augusta, to be honest, is what David, my trainer, would like me to do. But we'll get my knee back to 100% before I think about doing any surfing again.
Q. So what activities are you referring to?
ADAM SCOTT: Like skiing and tennis and anything that involves me running around like that.
Q. Do you think they are more dangerous than surfing?
ADAM SCOTT: Definitely.
ADAM SCOTT: Mm-hmm (nodding). Surfing is not a problem. I'm not strapped to the board at all. I'm free and I can fall in the water -- if I fall, you know. (Laughter).
Skiing, I definitely fall, and my legs are strapped to a ski, they can twist so easily. And the same with tennis, just violent movement, changing directions. Yeah, take it easy.
Q. Are you referring to water skiing or snow skiing?
ADAM SCOTT: Snow skiing.
Q. You're looking, longingly, I assume, at the surf?
ADAM SCOTT: (Looking at watch. ) It's meant to come in tomorrow. It hasn't been too painful so far, but it's meant to come in. It will be a shame.
Q. Was celebrity hard to deal with when you first achieved it?
ADAM SCOTT: I don't know. No, I don't think I'm -- in, golf, no.
Q. I'm not trying to turn you into Mel Gibson here, but seriously, you became -- you're a very good young player as an amateur and as a professional, and as you got more publicity and more opportunities, was that hard to adjust to having eyeballs on you, people wanting a piece of your time? Not us, outside the game and stuff like that.
ADAM SCOTT: Yeah, you have to make some adjustments. I think it wasn't very hard to adjust to. I think I've been treated really fairly and I think I've treated everyone fairly in return. So I don't think it's that hard of a thing to deal with. I'm not really that much in the spotlight once I walk away from the golf course.
So that's a nice thing.
Q. As a fan of the game, what do you think is going to be a bigger story at Augusta this year, Greg's return, Tiger's return, or Harrington going for a third straight major?
ADAM SCOTT: They are all good stories. I'm not putting the other two guys down, but obviously Tiger's return is going to have a fair bit of attention to it. I think it's awesome that Greg's coming back. I played with him in a practice round there the last time he played, and I thought that might have been the last time I ever get to play with him at Augusta.
So I'm going to try and pin him down for a practice round again, for sure, which would be great. And yeah, Harrington going for three in a row; the guy is on a roll. He's had a remarkable couple of years. No reason why he can't, either.
Q. Do you think Greg can compete and throw a scare at you guys like he did at the British Open, or is the course too long for a guy his age?
ADAM SCOTT: I would never count Greg out of anything, but the course has changed a little bit. If he plays good, he can; you saw what he can do with the Open.
Q. Would you rather play golf with Greg or tennis with Chrissy?
ADAM SCOTT: I would potentially beat Greg at golf, so play golf with Greg, because I know Chrissy would probably kick my ass at tennis (laughter).
Q. How many times have you been to the Mercedes?
ADAM SCOTT: This is my fourth time.
Q. So with the young up-and-comers, like Camilo, what do you see in them? Do you see them going through what you went through when this was all relatively fresh?
ADAM SCOTT: Yeah, I think the young players -- (rolling eyes) -- which I was once, you learn from the guys just in front of you. I see Camilo and Anthony Kim being the young players of the moment, better than, you know, Sergio and myself were, and Trevor Immelman were, Justin Rose. And they have learned something from all of the guys and they have learned something from us. Each time the younger generation gets better and better. They are doing great here at the Mercedes. They have done something right.
Q. Do you still consider yourself a young player?
ADAM SCOTT: I feel young, yes.
Q. It's crazy, but you're only a year younger than Camilo?
ADAM SCOTT: I don't know. I'm 28.
Q. He's 26 or 27. Do you feel older for how long you've been out here?
ADAM SCOTT: I still feel like I'm pretty young and don't feel old, that's for sure, which is good. I think the TOUR kind of keeps you young. Everyone is always pretty fresh out here.
Q. You described last year as a bit of a wasted year. Do you feel that you have your ducks in a row and everything is behind you, or is it too early to say that?
ADAM SCOTT: I definitely do. I wouldn't say it's a wasted year, but it's been a frustrating year. It was pretty productive in the first half of the year and a lot of things, but having a bit of a break from the TOUR and a break from the game, even though it was a forced break at the end of the year, was quite good for me. It gave me a chance to clear my head and get my ducks in a row, like you said. I was eagerly awaiting 2009, to be honest.
Q. How easy is it to hit the ground running by focusing on tournament golf but still enjoying the atmosphere?
ADAM SCOTT: I think you've got to use both to your advantage. It's nice and relaxed. It's a small field. It's Hawaii, which is obviously great, but came here with a purpose, like every other week, and that's to win. So you want to hit the ground running. My preparation, even though it's been a bit different than usual, has been good, and I'm happy with what I've done over the last couple of weeks since I've been able to hit balls again.
Yeah, definitely looking for a big week here.
Q. How has it been different, just in terms of not being able to hit as many balls?
ADAM SCOTT: Yeah, the last month has been intense rehab on my knee just to be able to get here. You know, even a couple of days before I was coming, it wasn't looking great. I had some pretty bad stuff going on in my calf, and it was making it tough to walk still.
You know, balancing, doing exercises, and getting it right, and hitting a few balls, and getting the swing right, and then recovering from all that, has been quite tough, because the leg has been through a pretty traumatic month, I would say.
Q. So were you in doubt to the last minute to even come here?
ADAM SCOTT: No, I thought I could get here. But a few problems popped up in the last week, which we weren't expecting, yeah.
Q. What's the rehab involved?
ADAM SCOTT: Just strengthening the leg. My leg wasted away to nothing pretty much in the two weeks that I couldn't be on it.
So I've been slowing picking up the workload on it and trying to build up my quad muscles again. I would say they are at 90% of where they were, which is pretty good. But to go with that, my calf took a fair beating, as well, because it was doing a lot of extra work, and I got a bit of a calf strain that's lingering but it's fine.
Q. So it sounds like it was more serious than the initial reports, because you almost played the Australian Open the following week?
ADAM SCOTT: Yeah, it was a lot worse than -- when I did it, I've done it -- I did it a couple of years ago and I played two weeks later, and, you know, done that a couple of times, played the following week. I did it in Italy one year and I played the Volvo Masters the next week. So I thought that would be how it was. But actually, it was a bit worse this time and the swelling just didn't go down.
Yeah, I mean, initial reports, I thought I should have been fine for the Aussie Open, and then, yeah, just wasn't improving in that first week, week and a half.
Q. Are you wearing a brace this week or anything?
ADAM SCOTT: No. Should be fine.
Q. Do you see issues with your swing because of the fact that your leg is not where it needs to be yet for your game?
ADAM SCOTT: Yeah, when it gets tired, at the end of the day, it can possibly affect my swing. But I'm trying to not let it affect my swing, but it's possible.
Q. Have you talked to Butch? Have you seen Butch?
ADAM SCOTT: I haven't seen Butch, but I've talked to him. My swing feels fine. I'm not coming out allowing for a bad knee. I feel like I can swing 100%.
Q. Sorry to go big picture on you here, but where do you see yourself in what you've achieved at this stage of your career; about what you wanted to? Less? More?
ADAM SCOTT: Yeah, I have high expectations for myself. I think I've done well, but I think I could have achieved more. But it's all part of the process. Last year was, although, a frustrating year for me, it was a good year for me to look back on it and learn a lot out of it. It was the first time in my career that I had really struggled, and it wasn't even really struggling on the course. It was more just a bit of a struggle with everything else going on, frustrating injury, illness, some personal stuff, and probably the first time there was a bump in the road for me. My career had just cruised along nicely.
It was good to learn a lot, and a few things have certainly motivated me a hell of a lot more in the last couple weeks.
Q. Such as what?
ADAM SCOTT: I don't know, something got me inspired to just work a little bit harder again and get going. I kind of felt like that's what I was doing at the start of last year, and I just didn't get to complete it.
You know, just a little more determined to go out there and make it happen in the next couple of years.
Q. Can you say what it was?
ADAM SCOTT: I'm going to keep that to myself, actually, for the moment.
Q. What if we promise not to tell anybody?
ADAM SCOTT: (Laughing) We'll see how I go.
Q. What are you most proud of what you've achieved so far, not necessarily a single thing.
ADAM SCOTT: You know, I don't really know. Golf-wise, I mean, looking back, winning THE PLAYERS Championship was great, but it feels like a lifetime ago now, and it's gone quick. You know, that's what I want to feel again. I want to feel that big win, and the hard work; a lot of hard work went into that, and that's what I want to get back in to doing. Victory is all that much better when you've worked hard. So I would like to get back there.
There are a few things. I've done some stuff in Australia that I'm proud of that's happening down there. Yeah, I mean, I don't know, I'm certainly not satisfied with my career. I'm not boasting on myself just yet.
Q. Do you feel like at times you were complacent?
ADAM SCOTT: No, I wouldn't -- well, at the end of last year, I was a little complacent, because, to be honest, my head was not in the game. I didn't really want to be out here, and I was just playing because that's what I do.
But looking back on it, I should have gone home around the US PGA and just gotten my head together and gotten everything straightened out. I was sick, I was not happy, and I needed a break. Certainly I was complacent at that time. My results were pitiful. I was not happy out on the golf course. In hindsight, I should have done that. But hopefully I know for next time.
Sometimes you just need to get spurred on and get maybe a kick in the butt and realize that you have to keep working. That's what I feel like I need to do. I feel like I need to get back out there and work again.
Watching Tiger, I watched some highlights of Tiger at home with a couple of friends, and they are, like, you know, this guy is unbelievable, and he really is unbelievable. I know the hard work he puts into it, and he's the guy that you've probably got to beat to win some big ones. You know, he's going to be around the place, so I've got to work pretty bloody hard to do it.
DOUG MILNE: Adam, as always, we appreciate it.
End of FastScripts