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November 13, 2020

Phil Mickelson

Augusta, Georgia

Q. Starting with the tee shot on 12.
PHIL MICKELSON: I've actually in the past, maybe '05, started on 12 before. I think that none of the players care. We're just appreciative that we have a chance to play for the Masters and that green jacket. We're appreciative of the extra work‑‑ I mean, it's five, ten times harder to put this tournament on this year than it has been in the past, and the club has worked very hard to hold this event, and we're all very appreciative.
It doesn't matter if we're teeing off on 10, 12, rain delays, whatever. We get a chance to compete for a green jacket, and we're all very appreciative of that.

Q. How do you feel out there?
PHIL MICKELSON: I'm striking the ball exceptional, and I'm putting horrific. And if I get that fixed this weekend, I'm going to make a run.

Q. You've talked about putting the longer shafted driver in play kind of takes some things out of play. How is that going for you?
PHIL MICKELSON: Awesome. I'm driving like a stallion.

Q. Can you give an example where you've been able to be the stallion?
PHIL MICKELSON: Driving it over the trees on 9 all the way down to the bottom, hitting wedge into 17, wedge into 14. 5 iron both days into 2. I mean, I'm driving the ball very well. I'm hitting the ball great, and I'm putting awful. I've been putting well this year, and if I get this fixed for the weekend, I'm going to make a run.
I'm very frustrated and disappointed with the way I've putted. I've let eight, nine, ten shots on the green, and it's pathetic, and I'm going to fix that and hopefully make a run. But you can't make those mistakes, give those shots up in this field, in this competition.
But we've got 36 more holes, and I'm playing well enough‑‑ I struck it well enough to keep me in it despite probably being last in the field in putting. But I'm going to get that fixed for tomorrow's round.

Q. Speed issue, line issue, all of the above?
PHIL MICKELSON: Yeah, and it hasn't been that bad, just all the good putts I've hit have lipped out, and I've hit some bad ones too, but I'm going to get it fixed, like I say.

Q. So the absence of the gallery is obviously‑‑ you know, you knew that was going to be the case. But one thing I noticed is you can see your wife so much more easily sort of check in along the way. Can you just speak to this place, you guys as a couple, and the connection?
PHIL MICKELSON: She is the most charismatic, intelligent, dynamic woman‑‑ or person I've ever met, and her energy and support means more to me than anything, and to be able to see her and be able to see her out here and have her on holes that she's never been able to see before, like 12 and 13, is an experience of a lifetime for both of us. I'm so happy she's here.

Q. How is the 1st coupling differently than in previous years?
PHIL MICKELSON: Although it's a little longer because it's wet, it's not as sticky. So when it's dry, it's sticky, and the ball comes out dead, but because it's a little wet, the ball's kind of coming out okay and not coming up as short as it normally does.

Q. Does that matter to you or kind of the same?
PHIL MICKELSON: Kind of the same, yeah.

Q. Phil, with so few people on the course, are there things that you hear that you wouldn't normally hear or see that you wouldn't normally see?
PHIL MICKELSON: No. I mean, my vision is only inside the ropes. My ball is outside the ropes. My vision is only inside the ropes.

Q. That being said, is this the first tournament you can remember with no ropes?
PHIL MICKELSON: Probably, yeah. It actually saves me a lot of time, to be honest (laughter).

Q. Are they any rituals or traditions out on this course that you follow every year?
PHIL MICKELSON: I don't know off the top of my head any, yeah. I do, but it's just not coming to me right now.

Q. How are you going to go about fixing your putting?
PHIL MICKELSON: I'm going to go get on a Quintic system right now and see if it's alignment or stroke or path or what.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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