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May 16, 2013

Keegan Bradley


THE MODERATOR:  We would like to welcome Keegan Bradley into the interview room after a 10‑under par 60, he breaks the current record here at the HP Byron Nelson Championship, he ties the overall record.  Keegan, shattered your best round on the PGA TOUR by 3 shots, if you can give some comments.
>> It was a regular round with Duff and Kuch.  It felt like a Saturday morning round with my buddies.  I started off well, and bogeyed 18 and 1 which was disappointing, but got right back on it after that.  It felt easy, which it seems to feel when you shoot a low number.  Seems hard when you shoot 75, but it was just a great round, great day.

Q.  From what I understand the putt at 1 came up short.  Talk about what happened there and 18, the bogey.
KEEGAN BRADLEY:  Are you talking about the first hole?

Q.  No. 1, the one you bogeyed.
KEEGAN BRADLEY:  Man, it's probably one of the easiest holes on the course.  I was frustrated after that bogey.  I hit the wrong club off the tea.  My caddy, Pepsi wanted me to hit driver and for whatever reason I wanted to hit 3‑wood and I hit it in the bunker and bogeyed.  I was happy with the way I handled myself after that, because I was upset.  I came back and made a bunch of birdies coming in.

Q.  The par putt, how close it was?
KEEGAN BRADLEY:  It lipped out, didn't stop short but it went by.

Q.  When did you start thinking about 59 and also the fact that you had two bogeyed is remarkable.
KEEGAN BRADLEY:  Um, I didn't‑‑ I've played rounds before, one in particular Nationwide Tour when I was 9‑under after 14, and it was par 7 and I was thinking about it, but today I finished eagle, birdie, birdie so it didn't cross my mind very much, It did in the fairway, I hit a 136 yards, I hit a wedge, it was going right at it.  And it crossed my mind for a second, and it would be unbelievable if I buried this!  (Laughter.)  But I had 3 feet to shoot 60.  I was actually very nervous, uncomfortable over it and thank God I made it.

Q.How important is it on Thursdays and Fridays to be in a group where the three of you and the three caddies seem to get along so well.  How important is that to getting out to a good start‑‑
KEEGAN BRADLEY:  Today was awesome, just like you said, all of our caddies, the players were all buddies, Ryder Cup teammates, Jason Dufner is becoming one of my closest friends out here.  We have a lot of banter back and forth, mostly him to me.  But it was just a really fun day and made for a relaxing round and helped me play well for sure.

Q.  How important is that after the stress of a big tournament like the PLAYERS, does that make a difference?
KEEGAN BRADLEY:  Super important‑‑ I don't know if it's important but it's nice.  It helps for sure.  I was so excited to see that pairing.  It is, after the PLAYERS and the stress, it is important to play with somebody that you like.

Q.  The front nine it seemed like you had the irons dialed in and your back nine you were holding longer putts, would it be fair to say it was almost like a tale of two halves there?
KEEGAN BRADLEY:  The 6‑iron I hit on 7 was the best I've hit all year but it was rare to match up a ball striking day and make everything, it never happens, probably a couple times and it happened today.  The hole looked huge, even the putts I missed almost went in and that's when you know you're really putting well.  I enjoy the greens, I seem to be able to read 'em well so it's exciting.

Q.  You've played so well at this tournament.  We talked to Ryan Palmer earlier, and he has, too.  Is there something about getting on a course that you feel comfortable and what is it about this course that you love?
KEEGAN BRADLEY:  I can't quite figure out what it is about this course, but there are a couple of holes where there are bunkers and I can rip it over the bunker and holes that fit my eye well.
I've played well in this type of grass, this Bermuda‑type, which is strange because I grew up on Bent.  The course fits my eye really well and I feel comfortable out here, it's a lot of drivers which I like and I hit the ball in the fairway all day today, which is a bonus being able to touch the ball and having a good lie every time.

Q.  Obviously you have the course record here now.  How many places do you hold or share a course record, to your knowledge?
KEEGAN BRADLEY:  I'm not 100% sure but probably four or five.  It depends on if they still stand from when I was younger.  Shooting a course record is pretty unbelievable at an event like this, considering the history and the players that have won and the players that have played here before me.
It's awesome.  I was thinking a little bit of Phil today when he shot 60 at Phoenix.  I was thinking about how, you know, I wanted to shoot 60, to at least compete with him a little bit with that one.  For whatever reason I was thinking about it.  I like to beat him every time I can, at anything, but it was a special day.  I enjoyed the day.

Q.  Would you say the two bogeys in the middle of the round you weren't thinking about 59 at that point, I wouldn't think.  Did they take the pressure off not having to worry about 59, not putting it in your mind.
KEEGAN BRADLEY:  I only shot 4‑under on the front, which is a great round but when you shoot 4‑under you don't think 59, and then when I bogeyed 1.  It didn't cross my mind at all.  Thinking back on it I birdied more holes than I didn't, which is rare.  It just was an explosive type of round.  I felt like all I needed to do was get it on the green and I was going to make it.  And to top that I was hitting the ball close a lot.

Q.  The tee shot on 18, what did you do?
KEEGAN BRADLEY:  I baled out and hit it to the right, which I normally always do.  I tried to take my medicine and make 5.
It's a tough hole, there is no "right" way to play it.  I don't know whether to hit 3‑wood, driver, rip it, hit iron.  I've played the hole decently over the years but it's a tough tee ball for me, I think for everybody it's tough.

Q.  Is that a playoff beard for the Bruins?
KEEGAN BRADLEY:  Absolutely, yeah, I was thinking about the Bruins all day today, I got a playoff beard going for the Bruins for sure.

Q.  There were a number of Texas Ranger players out there supporting you and the game today.  How do you feel about getting support from fellow athletes and are you planning to return the favor while you're here?
KEEGAN BRADLEY:  That's great, I didn't notice.  It's tough for me to tell who is in the crowd.  That's really special.
I think that's so cool about sports, that we're all kind of, like, in this little club and seems like everybody respects each other, respects what they do.  It's amazing to me to find out how much professional athletes love golf.  Seems like every one that I speak to, which is cool because it's a common interest.  That's fun to hear.

Q.  On the light side, we have gone from Dufnering to a bag of empty clubs on the ground.  Is this starting to get planned out?  Is there a future to this going on between you and Jason or is this an "at the moment" thing?
KEEGAN BRADLEY:  He loves to mess with me.  I walked in today and all of my stuff was all over the floor and I did something to him.  I don't want to tell you guys because I don't want him to find out what I did, but I told my caddy Pepsi before we played I'm too scared to do anything too much because I don't know what he will do!  He could throw my clubs in the water or something so I don't know, I take it easy on him because I'm a little bit scared of him.

Q.  (Away from mic.)

Q.  So things were in the locker room‑‑
KEEGAN BRADLEY:  In the Champions locker room I left my clubs, which is a huge mistake.  It was my fault.  He took my clubs out, they were all over, he opened up my umbrella, he put my bag on the ground.  I did remove something from his locker that he is going to have trouble finding and he's going to need it.  We'll see if he can find it.

Q.  So it is a continuing saga.
KEEGAN BRADLEY:  Yeah, yeah, it will be.
THE MODERATOR:  Thank you, Keegan Bradley.

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