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September 11, 2010

Dustin Johnson


JOEL SCHUCHMANN: Dustin Johnson, thanks for joining us after a third round 68 here at the BMW Championship. Maybe we can get some opening comments about a good day for you and right in contention heading into the final round.
DUSTIN JOHNSON: Well, I got off to a rough start, made a couple bogeys early, just a couple missed short putts on the first few holes. But hit it in there pretty close on 7, hit a good drive and a good second shot, made the putt.
And then same on 8, kind of got me going a little bit, and then birdied 9, 10 and 11, also.
Then I bogeyed 13, hit it in the left bunker, which is not good, off the tee -- actually it wasn't in the bunker, it stayed out of the bunker on the slope. Then just made bogey there.
And then birdied 15, the par-5.

Q. You've had so many chances on so many Sundays this year. Are you getting comfortable being kind of a marked man in the limelight down the stretch on the back nine with all the adrenaline and mojo working? Are you liking it?
DUSTIN JOHNSON: Yeah, I love it. That's why I'm out here is to win. I'm not out here to just play. Any time you've got a chance to win, it's a great opportunity.

Q. What do you think was the best of the shots during your run of birdies there, the most important one?
DUSTIN JOHNSON: I mean, I hit a really good wedge shot on 10 to like -- almost holed it. I think it came back right across the hole to like six inches. And then probably the best shot I hit was maybe on 8. It was kind of a tough flag to get to, and I hit an 8-iron back there to about ten feet just short of it.

Q. What did you hit off the tee there?

Q. We're back in the Midwest. What kind of love are you getting from the galleries post-PGA after what happened to you? Are you hearing stuff from the fans?
DUSTIN JOHNSON: Yeah, ever since the PGA it's been really good. The fans have been unbelievably nice to me and given me a lot of support, so the fans have been absolutely great.

Q. Heard any funny lines from them about it? Anything that we can print in the newspaper?
DUSTIN JOHNSON: Well, I hear "It wasn't a bunker" every time, about every hole. That's the one I get mostly.

Q. Given how close you are to Milwaukee, is there a chance anyone standing in that bunker was there today in the gallery?

Q. There was a lot of people in that bunker.
DUSTIN JOHNSON: There was a lot of people.

Q. A lot of guys that -- something like that happens to them, it really affects them psychologically and maybe takes a while to bounce back. You seem to have just bounced back, and now here you are again and you keep putting yourself in this position. What is it about you that allows you to just forget the past?
DUSTIN JOHNSON: I don't know, but I've always been that way. I just don't let stuff bother me too much. You know, I try to always look forward. You can't really change what's happened in the past. You know, I've got a lot of other things to focus on, like tomorrow, I've got a big day tomorrow. I'm in the same situation again and need to come out and have a good day.

Q. How much are you looking forward to the Ryder Cup?
DUSTIN JOHNSON: I'm really looking forward to the Ryder Cup. I think it's going to be an unbelievable experience. It's going to be fun. You know, obviously growing up as a kid, you always watch the Ryder Cup, you always wanted to play on the Ryder Cup, so it's a dream come true.

Q. What kind of galleries did they have at the Walker Cup?
DUSTIN JOHNSON: It was big. We had it in Northern Ireland, so it was the first time they had an event in forever. And then McIlroy was playing, also, and he's from that area. We had about 10,000 people following our match on the first day. So it was a lot of people.

Q. Do you think that'll serve you well or will there be no comparison do you think?
DUSTIN JOHNSON: No, I think it'll serve me well, for sure. It's probably one of the better experiences I've had so far in my career.

Q. Do you think about being world No. 1 or things like that, or are we still too early in the game for you on that? Is that a goal down the road?
DUSTIN JOHNSON: Yeah, right now my goal is to get in the top 10, then keep moving my goal up once I get there. But for now, no, I'm not thinking about that.

Q. You've obviously raised your game this year and contended more often and put yourself in spots in majors to excel. What would be a main reason or two for your improved consistency?
DUSTIN JOHNSON: You know, my misses aren't as bad anymore. When I miss the ball I'm maybe just off the fairway or in a sand trap, whatever, but I'm not hitting any wild shots. You know, I'm getting a lot more consistent with my irons, getting them dialed in better. Even my misses with my irons, they're on the greens now instead of in a spot where I can't get up-and-down. I've been working hard on the short game, so it's going pretty good right now, too.

Q. That Ryder Cup dinner you had last week, all the veterans told you young guys the horror stories about the first tee balls and the pressure and all that stuff. Was that a help or a hindrance?
DUSTIN JOHNSON: No, it was funny. I mean, the most nervous I've ever been in my life was the first tee at the Walker Cup. I think I hit before the guy even got my name out. It's okay, we all have them, and I'm sure I'm going to be real nervous on the first tee at the Ryder Cup, too.

Q. Have you talked about Phil about pairings or any of those things? I know it's not necessarily up to you, but I guess you probably get to put your two cents' worth in there.
DUSTIN JOHNSON: Yeah, obviously me and Phil would like to play together. I think it would be a good pairing. We'll have to see what the captain thinks, but I'm pretty sure he likes it, too.
JOEL SCHUCHMANN: Dustin Johnson, thank you.

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