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July 9, 2011
6-7, 6-4, 6-4, 6-4
THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.
Q. Did it take you guys a set to get going?
BRYAN: Yeah, I mean, we came -- we were pretty jacked up. It's Davis Cup. We came out hyped.
But that set point in the first, if we win that, we kind of maybe steamroll 'em just because we were a front-running team. But they played good. They served well when they needed to.
CAPTAIN COURIER: That was embarrassing how poorly you jumped on that set point.
BRYAN: Have to see it on replay. Jumped pretty high for the chest bump, but that overhead...
Q. What was bigger in the fourth set, the break or converting the break?
BRYAN: The break's huge. I mean, there's only three breaks out there today. Every one was really big. I mean, we were pretty stingy on our serve. We're pretty confident when we're up a break.
That's what we do. We usually consolidate breaks. We were down two breakpoints there at 4-3, had a couple crazy long ones. But, you know, that was probably the pivotal point once we got through that. Big lefty comes out at 5-4.
Q. You've won a couple titles in your career. These guys have never played together before. You're down a set on obviously a very important day. Was there genuine concern or are you just shaking your heads?
BRYAN: That's when you're happy it's a three-out-of-five-set match. You have a little bit more time to boogey-woogey. We knew we could settle down.
We had a lot of looks in the first. We weren't playing horrible. But, I mean, it's a quick court. There's fine margins. We played a similar sort of match against Lopez/Verdasco a few years ago. It was just a couple breaks here and there.
Yeah, they were really close to the net, which made it tough to hit any kind of defensive return. You know, the ball wasn't really coming down, so the lob wasn't too much of an option.
Yeah, just a couple points here and there. I don't know how many breakpoints we had. I think we had a lot more than they did. We'll take the win any way we can get it.
Q. Andy Roddick said yesterday he had his faith in you guys; it was up to you guys to keep this thing going. How does it feel to come away with that first victory for the team on home soil?
BRYAN: It feels good to do our job. We're on the scoreboard now. The crowd was a huge factor. Hopefully they continue to bring the noise tomorrow. I like our chances. Mardy against Ferrer, he's beaten him before. If it comes down to Andy, you know, there's no better guy to have in that position than Andy Roddick in his hometown.
I know the U.S. has never come back from 2-zip, but I still think we have a good shot.
Q. 1934 was the last time the U.S. came back from 0-2. How do you get that positive momentum going?
CAPTAIN COURIER: I didn't go to college so history is not my thing, but thanks for the education.
We came here with a job to do, which is to get three. We have one. There's two more matches to play. It's pretty easy math.
I think the matchups for us are good tomorrow. I'm happy with them. Probably happier than the matchups on Friday, to be candid.
There's a lot of work ahead. But history means nothing out here. The only thing that matters are the two guys out there hitting the balls in those matches. There's no books, stories or words on paper that is going to change what happens tomorrow. It hasn't been written yet. We'll be ready to play ball and we'll see where the cards fall and then you guys can write about it and create some history.
Q. Did you have discussions with the referee? Did a couple balls hit the scoreboard?
CAPTAIN COURIER: I just asked him, A, is it legal if the ball goes up and through the scoreboard. He said as long as it doesn't touch something. That was something we didn't address early on. If you go out and look at it, it's highly improbable it's coming through there without touching something. So thankfully these guys were so heads up that they managed to both go up for the overhead and no one got hurt.
Yeah, it's part of the play. I guess, if it doesn't touch, the ball is in play. It was an odd set of circumstances. We just wanted clarity on whether if a ball goes up in there the point is over.
Q. Who got the overhead?
MIKE BRYAN: I think Bob hit it, but I crushed his racquet.
Q. What is it in Mardy's game that will hurt Ferrer tomorrow?
CAPTAIN COURIER: Mardy has a great serve. Mardy is consistent from the back of the court and plays very good defense. It's a little bit of a different matchup. David played so well yesterday. It's likely he'll play that well again. So Mardy's going to have to lift his game and take it to him at times but also be patient at times.
You can easily get frustrated playing someone like David when he isn't missing like he was yesterday. He can seem to be a wall out there. But Mardy is also a wall. He is not as small and as fast. He's big. Mardy is big and long and he covers the court in a different way.
Q. Does it help for you to have a teammate or teammates sitting out on the bench during the matches? Is that meaningful to you?
BRYAN: Yeah, it always helps to have support from your friends.
BRYAN: Guys we've been on this team with for the last eight to ten years. We know they have confidence in us. Yeah, you like to have familiar situations on the bench.
Q. You hear the crowd, you know how supportive they are. But to be able to look in Andy's eyes at a good or bad time, how helpful that is?
BRYAN: It's cool to see him enthused and into the match. Yesterday we watch a set, go put our feet up, get maximum rest. To see them jumping up almost every big point, you know, is huge. They're really rooting for us from the bottom of their heart and they got to play tomorrow.
They're just great teammates.
Q. Jim, you like seeing the other guys out there during matches?
CAPTAIN COURIER: Listen, I think in a perfect world they'd be able to watch every point. Our guys need to do what's right for them. You won't see Andy watching Mardy from the sidelines tomorrow in the fourth match. He needs to be doing his thing. Same with these guys. If there was one match a day for five days, everyone would sit and watch.
But the practical reality is we need to focus on taking care of business at all times. If that means we can all be on the bench, great. It is a collective effort. But I think we have to be realistic as to when it's appropriate and not.
Q. Jim, every player's personality is different. This is the first time you've been a coach with Mardy. What do you think he needs to prepare him in the best way for the match tomorrow?
CAPTAIN COURIER: We talked about this in Santiago as a captain, is to come into an established team and fit in, not be the sore thumb who is making things awkward for them when they're in their war environment effectively is an athlete's mindset.
Mardy is a little different than Bob and Mike. He's a little different than Andy. He's different than John Isner. My job is to find out when and how to do that.
We worked through it yesterday. We had a good chat about it afterwards to see if it felt right and where it was good and where there's room for improvement. So, you know, Mardy, he likes to have a chat when it's important, but he also likes his space and he likes to be able to have some quiet time.
I think I'll do a better job for him tomorrow.
Q. You learned some things, you'll be tweaking?
CAPTAIN COURIER: I'll always be tweaking with these guys. There's no perfect system out there. You have to find the right thing for the situation. We talked about this as well. Sometimes saying nothing is the best coaching you can do.
Q. I don't know if you follow golf or not.
CAPTAIN COURIER: What is golf? Is that a game?
Q. I don't know if you're familiar with Ben Crenshaw, the Ryder Cup story in '99.
CAPTAIN COURIER: When he gave them the big talk and the big speech.
Q. Right. You're familiar with that?
CAPTAIN COURIER: Vaguely. You're making me familiar with it.
Q. He was talking about destiny. They came back the next day and beat the Europeans. I don't know if you believe in destiny.
CAPTAIN COURIER: I'm not in the prediction business. I believe in putting our helmets on and going to work and playing it point by point.
Destiny is a real beautiful concept, but reality intrudes on destiny by forcing you to confront the moment. We got a lot of moments ahead of us tomorrow. We'll be ready to confront each of them that come. I'm a little more pragmatic maybe than Ben. Sounds like he's maybe a bit of a dreamer.
Q. Bob and Mike, obviously your Davis Cup record speaks for itself. Talk about how much you want the ball, whether it's a chance to clinch the tie, you're up 2-0, or to save the team and keep the tie going.
BRYAN: I mean, it's the same for us, no matter if it's 1-All or 0-2. It's a different situation each time. We create motivation from each scoreline we're at.
Today we went out there just trying to get some momentum going for this team, keep us in the match, give our singles horses a chance to show some stuff on Sunday.
You know, we love Davis Cup. It's a huge part of our career. Some of our best memories have come from Davis Cup. So, you know, as long as Jim keeps giving us the nod, we'll be here.
Q. Jim, your suit has incited a lot of chatter on Twitter, most notably among Judy Murray who is wondering if you were channeling Phil Jackson. Wondering what the inspiration was there. Maybe it's Tom Landry or somebody else?
CAPTAIN COURIER: I hope you're kidding, by the way. Really?
The suit is what I'm comfortable wearing. It's interesting that people are noticing it, I guess. But it's not really much of a factor, is it? I'm not going to be hitting any tennis balls out there. I like the way basketball coaches look when they're with their teams. I thought that would be something good for me to emulate.
These guys are the ones there to do the work. I'm there to try to help them to see things they may not be seeing or to give them some support, a little lift when they need it. But I'm not out there to go break a sweat, towel off. I'm there to get towels if they need them.
This is what I want to wear. It's neither right or wrong, it's just me.
Q. Yesterday Mardy made a point that on paper he might be the No. 1 singles player on the team, but in his mind it's very much still Andy Roddick's team. I was wondering, do you feel that Andy is still the leader in a certain way?
CAPTAIN COURIER: Andy is the alpha. He's been the alpha dog on this team. These guys have been in the trenches so long, I'll let you guys talk about it. But that's what I think.
BRYAN: Andy is pretty remarkable in Davis Cup. I think he's 12-0 when it comes down to him closing.
I think he's played 44 or 45 matches. He kind of takes the bull by the horns and leads this team pretty well. At every dinner, he's the one doing most of the talking.
CAPTAIN COURIER: He's the one making the playlist.
BRYAN: I mean, he's Andy Roddick.
CAPTAIN COURIER: And this is Austin, Texas.
Q. Jim, do you expect to see Lopez out there tomorrow? Albert was kind of leaving his options open, even threatening to play Marcel at some point.
CAPTAIN COURIER: Well, I might get in the prediction business for that one and say I doubt we'll see Marcel in singles tomorrow.
But, listen, the way that Feliciano competed yesterday, the roll that he's on from Wimbledon to here, I would be shocked if he weren't on the court tomorrow, unless he suffered an injury that we're unaware of and didn't pull up well today.
We fully expect to see him, and obviously we expect to see David, as well.
Q. Speaking of esoteric topics, destiny, could you reflect on your Texas winning streak.
BRYAN: We have a good one. Won a few times in the Masters Cup. Played well at River Oaks. Played well at the 14 Nationals in San Antonio. For some reason we play really well here.
CAPTAIN COURIER: Stanford Cardinal ever visit here?
BRYAN: Yeah, won the All-American, singles. This is our most successful state (laughter).
CAPTAIN COURIER: No income tax.
Q. Jim, what were your conversations like with Andy? You've lost in the Davis Cup and come back to clinch. Were there any conversations about that over the last 24 hours?
CAPTAIN COURIER: Well, there have been lots of conversations in the last 24 hours. One of the great things about this team is they're very experienced. They've had to bounce back over the years from setbacks and disappointments. So Andy is fully aware of what he needs to do.
My conversations with him are more focused on the matchups and what he needs to do in the match. I don't need to tell him to bounce back. He's ready to jump through hoops and run through a wall to play that fifth match tomorrow.
So that's the same with all these guys. Mardy was disappointed yesterday because in a way he feels like he let his team down, which is not the case. Mardy laid it out there, gave everything he had, which is all we ask of any of these guys. He'll be ready to go tomorrow as well.
But, you know, there's very little igniting a fire that I need to do.
Q. Costa says he doesn't feel that they're the favorites anymore. Do you?
CAPTAIN COURIER: They're the favorites. They're up 2-1. I mean, math is math. We can't deny that. We need two, they need one. We got to play ball tomorrow. So he can say what he wants, I can say what I want, we can all talk about it, you can all write about it. Tomorrow we have two guys on our side that have to settle it, and two guys on theirs.
It's so damn simple. It's so boring and clich√É¬© and all that (laughter).
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports