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August 13, 2016

Bubba Watson

Rio De Janeiro, Brazil

Q. Do you feel like you got back into it today?
BUBBA WATSON: I mean, yes, obviously because I went from wherever I was to where I'm at now. (Laughter) That's the best way to say it. I think I moved up, so yeah.
So now, am I in contention for a medal? Yesterday you were really down on the Americans and saying we weren't really a chance. I'm not saying I won't shoot 80 tomorrow, but I'm saying at least I have a shot at it.

Q. Did you think you guys played that well for two rounds?
BUBBA WATSON: Played better than you would have.

Q. Why are you reading Golf Week?
BUBBA WATSON: That was his question yesterday. His question yesterday was, y'all are really out of it. I paraphrased it, like the Internet would say.

Q. But I clean the bottom of my putter before I putt.
BUBBA WATSON: Obviously I don't pay my caddie very well.

Q. You sure it was mud?
BUBBA WATSON: I mean, the only‑‑ when I looked down at it, yeah, it wasn't an animal.
What happened, as soon as I putted, I just looked at the video, you can't see it, but as soon as I putted, my caddie and the other caddie that was next to him, you could see, it was just about half a quarter size, quarter size.
So as soon as I took it back, it fell, so I tried to stop, and you could see me recoil, trying to stop, because I didn't know what it was. It was like a‑‑ I thought it could have been a bee or a bug. Then I found out it was a bug. I looked down and I was like, that's mud, where did it come from, or dirt, whatever you want to call it. Mud putter.

Q. So the ball only went about six or seven feet?
BUBBA WATSON: Yeah, it was downwind (laughter). But then I went and marked it, because it was same line. Didn't change the line any. And then we laughed about it because I was like, man, I'm going to be famous now. I'm going to be a legend in Olympic history, in Olympic golf history, I guess.

Q. How do you approach tomorrow, any differently than any other tournament?
BUBBA WATSON: I've been treating this different than any other tournament. I mean, this is the Olympics. This is the greatest sporting event that you can ever be associated with. Look at these athletes that are here; this is every sportsman in the world's dream to be here, and now that golf is in here, I mean, this is‑‑ I'm a kid in a candy store. And I'm not saying that because I own a candy store.
But this is a dream of a lifetime. I'm hanging with the athletes. I mean, golf just gets in my way. I want to go watch the other sports. I'm going to approach it, I'm going to watch some badminton tonight. Go hang in the cafeteria and try to meet other athletes and feel like I'm a superstar like them.

Q. Is it easy for golfers, top golfers, to feel like they are bigger than they are? When you come to a week like this, do you feel smaller?
BUBBA WATSON: You know what, I know where you're coming from. It makes sense. I can't speak for the other golfers, but for me personally, it's hard for me to come out here and‑‑ you know, when we're at the Masters, when I'm at the Masters, I'm grinding. I want to practice. I want to go back and get as much rest as I can, because of the grueling test.
Now should I be that way here? Some people will say yes. But I want to go enjoy it. I want to go see the other sports. I want to cheer on the other athletes. These are athletes that have dedicated their lives for this one event. They might have 30 seconds, Sunday night, I think it's just under, what, ten seconds. You think about that, four years, they have been waiting to run just under ten seconds.
We've got four days. They call us, ours is a marathon. We have four days to improve and gain on the leader.

Q. Do you feel like less a big deal though?
BUBBA WATSON: Yeah, because I'm giddy when I see other athletes that I know, like Michael Phelps. What a thrill and an honour. They rang the bell for me and Rickie when we left the training area or stretching area, right before you go to the call room to go out in the pool. They rang the bell for us and started cheering "USA!" and all the other countries stopped. That made us feel like we were something special.
But no, when you see these people winning Gold Medals and their dedication, their drive and their focus, I mean, it's impressive.

Q. Can this help you going forward, do you think? Can anything like that help you?
BUBBA WATSON: Not if I get mud on my putter. Yes, I think it can. I'm just taking it all in. I'm learning. Talking to the different athletes, you know, we have this floor where we can go and hang out and there's TVs and snacks, there's healthy snacks that I don't like, but there's other athletes hanging out there.
So we are meeting other athletes, talking to them, learning from them. So going forward, yeah, this can show how lucky, how blessed; there's no word to describe how lucky and blessed golfers are. It is my profession and my income and everything. It's beyond belief. We should never be disgruntled about anything that happens in our life.

Q. When you look at a normal week, when you go into the final round, you're probably looking at who's leading. Will you glance at third place and how far you're out tomorrow?
BUBBA WATSON: You know what's funny, once I leave this area where I'm at right now, I can't see a leaderboard, and I don't know how to find the leaderboard on the Internet, but I haven't looked. As soon as I leave here, we get back to the hotel, the village, apartments, whatever you want to call it. I get back there, take a shower, go down to that floor and see who is hanging out and I get something to eat and I go straight to an event.
I haven't even been wanting to look at a leaderboard. I don't know how to put it into words; I really don't care. I'm out here enjoying it, being so blessed that we get to play in the Olympics. I'm an athlete for the first time. My wife missed out, so for our family, it's a special deal. It's a big deal.
Anybody that gets down on themselves for how they competed or what their score are, when they look in the mirror, it's a special time in all of our lives being able to play golf in the Olympics.

Q. If you make the turn tomorrow and you're six strokes out of first place, but you're only two back of third place, does that change anything in how you approach the final nine holes?
BUBBA WATSON: No, because like today, the wind today, 11, 12, 13, 14, obviously 14 is really difficult. The wind, those are par holes. And so you're grinding away.
Yeah, you're always trying to move up, no matter what it is. When you go home, do you want to finish sixth or do you want to finish fifth; or do you want to finish fifth, or do you want to finish fourth. So you're always trying to move up. You're always trying to play your game.
And if I come out here tomorrow and shoot under par and know I played well, didn't make any mistakes, and I get beat, I get beat. That's just how you do it. You can't get down on yourself. You just have to take it with stride, and I've been beat many times on the golf course. I'm going to just keep grinding. I mean, you're always trying to move one spot ahead.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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