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June 15, 2014

Phil Mickelson


Q. (No Microphone.)
PHIL MICKELSON: Yeah, we're heading to the car here.

Q. How disappointing was it out there today?
PHIL MICKELSON: It wasn't -- I mean, it wasn't disappointing. It was a fun week. It was -- I just loved the golf course, the setup, how it played, how fair it was. What surprised me is how pure and perfect the greens were. I thought with this heat, bent grass, I just didn't think they would be as perfect as they are. They're just amazing. You get the ball on line and they go in every time just like Augusta, you know the last four or five feet if they're going in. They were just pristine. I think that there was some birdie holes on the back nine that when they moved the tee up on 13 and some other pins, you could get to, but also you can make some 25-, 30-footers and you just never know what will happen on that back nine. But it's interesting to see how in control Martin is of his game. It's impressive.

Q. Does it come down to you making putts, is that your week?
PHIL MICKELSON: Well, you got to put it all together to win a Major Championship. In this day and age, somebody's going to play well. You can't get by with scraping it around, you have to have it all firing. I didn't have it all firing this week, but there will be other chances.

Q. When you look back on your preparation for this week, is there anything you think about that you wish you had done differently or do you feel like you did all you could?
PHIL MICKELSON: No, I thought that I had a great game plan, I was ready to play, and sometimes it just doesn't click. It just doesn't come together. It's one thing to have a great game plan, but you have to execute, you got to hit some shots, make some putts, and I threw too many shots away the first two rounds to really have a good chance.

Q. Does your heart tell you you're going to get one of these?
PHIL MICKELSON: Do I believe that? I believe in the next five years I'm going to have three or four really good chances, and I do believe I will get it. I'm not upset or disappointed, I will have more chances. And right now, given the way I have been playing heading into this tournament, it was really a long shot. I've got to get some momentum and get my game sharp for me to really have a chance at winning and I'm going to spend the next five, six weeks seeing if I can get that to get it going here to finish the year strong.

Q. The young man in the wheelchair, I know you have a connection with him, what did it mean to have him out there with you?
PHIL MICKELSON: David, he's a great kid. He's been with us for a long time. He's been out at a number of tournaments for almost a decade now. His dad, John, is a great man. And they have gotten pretty close to me and Bones over the years, and they have -- they're just wonderful people and I love seeing guys like that support the game and love coming out.

Q. You said yesterday about coming in second place if you had played well today, in some respects is finishing 25th or 30th more palatable?
PHIL MICKELSON: Not at all. It is way worse, because there's nothing more exciting than having a chance. There's nothing more exciting than waking up Sunday with a 3:25 tee time and an opportunity to win the U.S. Open, whether you win or lose, because that pressure, that nervous feeling, those butterflies, that energy from the crowd when you make a birdie, the excitement, there's no he replacement for that. That's why we play.

Q. Is this putter in your hand possibly your next putter?
PHIL MICKELSON: No, no. I cleared out my locker. I'm just carrying it because he only has two hands.

Q. You were certainly far more disappointed at Merion, so the disappointment level seems lower.
PHIL MICKELSON: Yes, because I was disappointed earlier this week than Sunday. After two days and throwing that many shots away, it was disappointing. So I had to re-evaluate the weekend and just go out and fight hard and play well and try to build some momentum for the rest of the year. But the game's slowly coming back. For me to throw five shots away each day and to easily make the cut and move up, I don't feel like I'm that far off, but I've got some work to do.

Q. Johnny Miller's last broadcast today. Do you have any thoughts on that?
PHIL MICKELSON: I'm sure Fox will be great. I'm sure that Norman and Buck will do a great job. But Tommy Roy, who's the producer, and Johnny Miller and the whole crew at NBC has done such a great job for the game that they're going to be missed in this championship. Fortunately, we'll have them for a number of other events.

Q. Do you have plans for the rest of your Father's Day?
PHIL MICKELSON: We're going to go home, yeah.

Q. (No Microphone.)
PHIL MICKELSON: Yeah, he's a pretty cool kid. We've got a Monopoly game to finish, and we've got a couple of other things that we'll do on the flight back. But it's been fun having them here and now that they're out of school, we've got some trips planned together and it's good family time.

Q. (No Microphone.)
PHIL MICKELSON: Oh, certainly, it feels like British Open, as brown as the fairways are, as dry as they are, as much as the ball's running, as firm as the ground is around the greens. You see a lot of guys putting through it. There's a lot of the skill set needed at the British Open that's taking place out here at Pinehurst. There's no rough, no hack it out rough around the green, so you've seen all kind of bum shots lob shots, putts around being utilized much like a U.S. Open.

Q. (No Microphone.)
PHIL MICKELSON: Well, they will. I'll start getting ready for Hoylake and I'm optimistic about the end of the year, but I'm excited about the coming years, too. I think that this year has been a great learning year for me as far as certain areas of my game, but I haven't quite peaked with them yet. But I feel like I actually learned a few things and picked up some things for the coming years.

Q. Did you see the women out practicing today and how different was that? For the state of the game, is that kind of neat to have the women around?
PHIL MICKELSON: I think it's -- I think -- I hope this works out. I hope putting them back-to-back works out. There's a lot of exciting female players that will be competing next week, and their shot selection will be interesting and their execution on such a demanding golf course will be interesting. And it's fun to watch when you already know what the golf course is like and how it plays and where you can and can't go. I think from a kind of behind the scenes, I think that it's -- you only have to lay out the television wire and cables, you only have to put up the tents once instead of twice. All of the execution from the USGA's side gets cut in half. You only have to do it once instead of twice, and hopefully they will be able to make it more profitable and put more money back into the game.

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