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March 12, 2014

Kevin Streelman


DOUG MILNE:テつ Kevin Streelman, thanks for joining us for a few minutes.テつ You're back defending your title here at the Valspar Championship.テつ We appreciate your time.
Asked you about how it was out there earlier today.テつ You got the Pro-Am in.テつ Just a couple comments on the course and being back here at the Copperhead course.
KEVIN STREELMAN:テつ It's special to get back here.テつ It's the first time I've been on the back-9 since last year on the Sunday.テつ I kind of remember some of the shots I hit and putts I made, brought back in great memories.テつ The course is in great shape and get through the weather tomorrow I think the weekend looks great.
DOUG MILNE:テつ We'll just go right in, take a few questions from your guys.

Q.テつ Was it cool to see your picture on the ticket and to have the parking spot up-front?
KEVIN STREELMAN:テつ Yeah, it really was.テつ Fortunately, stayed just in the building right next door so I don't really drive over.テつ My coach, he has an old Subaru.テつ I took a picture of the Subaru next to Luke's Ferrari and Gary's Bentley.テつ It was pretty good.

My agent sent me a picture of the ticket a few weeks ago.テつ It's neat, really neat to see that and seeing it on the photos coming in.テつ For my first win it was special, special week and special place to have it and place I'll never forget.

Q.テつ Do you come in playing the same way that you did last year?
KEVIN STREELMAN:テつ Last year I came in really on a pretty bad note.テつ I missed the cut in Puerto Rico and was really sick the weekend before I came here as well, and didn't expect much out of my game.テつ Just probably what freed me up to play so well.
But, this year I've played, I'd say, steady.テつ Seems like a lot of 25th through 35th place finishes.テつ A great week in Maui where I almost caught Zach there on Sunday.
We had a child ten and a half weeks ago now and so I've been more focused on that role than my golf the last three months and now I kind of view this next run as kind of the start to my season, really getting going hopefully this week and a few weeks off to get my short game in order for Augusta, kind of play 5 out of 6 coming up.

Q.テつ Was there a particular shot or putt that came to mind as you made your first trip down the back-9 since?
KEVIN STREELMAN:テつ Always for me 13, that back right pin.テつ I had 5-iron in there that was the best shot of my life, especially under the circumstances that I had.テつ And then to follow it up with another high cut 4-iron on 17 and make another birdie there to kind of seal it were shots I'll never forget.
Birdie both those par-3s on a Sunday was memorable for me and yeah, those were the first shots that came to mind as I was walking the back-9 today.

Q.テつ Obviously having enjoyed some success on this, on a very difficult golf course, this week talk a little bit about your mindset, getting out here and playing this challenging track.
KEVIN STREELMAN:テつ Well, I'll tell you what, after last week and the conditions we battled last week it seems playable but I know tomorrow is going to be a bad 25, 35-mile an hour winds.テつ I view tomorrow as a day we keep the ball in front of you and try to hold on and then try and make -- make up some ground on the weekend.
You can shoot yourself out of the tournament tomorrow but if you could stick around par and maybe get a couple under, put you in really good position on the weekend.
We'll just see how the course plays.テつ Hopefully we don't get too much more rain and firm up and the wind will help.テつ The greens are rolling nice.
Got to put it in the right spots.テつ As we know on this golf course, you'll make some bogies pretty quickly.テつ It's looking to be a great field and great week as usual here in Tampa Bay.
DOUG MILNE:テつ Last thing, you're back with the new title sponsor onboard which obviously means a lot to the players and obviously the Tampa Bay community.
KEVIN STREELMAN:テつ It's clear this is, a lot of players would say, their favorite course in Florida that we play.テつ What a shame to lose a tournament.テつ I think everyone is very excited when Valspar stepped up and that charged the excitement level.テつ Hopefully have a very long-term relationship with Valspar going forward.

Q.テつ What is it about the golf course that's so -- being an ex player, I'm not a Florida fan at all.テつ This golf course is the best by far.テつ It might be in the Top-5 on the entire PGA TOUR even though it's top in Florida.
What is it that you like so much about it?
KEVIN STREELMAN:テつ I think it's shot playability.テつ You hit everything from 4-iron to driver off the tees, shape them both directions.
You have par-5s you can go for and some you lay back.テつ You've got par-3s.テつ You have to be so exact where you leave it.テつ There's no let up out there and so -- but it's very fair at the same time.テつ There's nothing -- people say last week maybe pushed the envelope a little bit.テつ This week there's no pushing the envelope.
You got to step up and hit a golf shot.テつ You got to step up on 16 and hit a great drive.テつ There's little room to bail.テつ You got to man up and hit golf shots out there.

Q.テつ Help explain to these guys what it's like to play in the Pro-Am when the pins are in the middle and get on the edges.
This golf course you can shoot 6, 7-under par pretty easy in a Pro-Am if the conditions are there, suddenly the pins on the edges.
KEVIN STREELMAN:テつ The short-sided downslopes are exactly what you're talking about, you're exactly right.テつ Short-side yourself, running away to you from a tucked pin.テつ There's no chance you're getting it inside of 15 feet.
It's a chess game out here.テつ You got to plan your tee shot to have the right angle into the green and leave it below the hole to have your uphill putts.
Some of the downhill putts are very sneaky fast, especially 17 and 18 when you're going the wrong way, you just breathe on it and it's rare it catches the hole because you don't have enough speed on it to hold the line.
It's just controlling your golf ball.テつ It's why 10-under here is always a really good golf score.
DOUG MILNE:テつ All right.テつ Kevin, we hope to see a lot in here this week.テつ Good luck.
KEVIN STREELMAN:テつ My pleasure.

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