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September 1, 2007

Phil Mickelson


Q. You categorized yesterday as fun. What does that make today?
PHIL MICKELSON: Well, today was a lot of fun. We certainly had a good time. I think this is what we were hoping for and kind of expecting yesterday. It was actually I thought a little more challenging day today with the cooler air and the breeze, but the greens were so perfect that you felt you could make a lot of putts. I certainly made a decent amount of par-saving putts as well as some birdie putts, and so did everybody else in the group, and that led to some low scores.

Q. You didn't make any putts on the front, did you?
PHIL MICKELSON: Well, I made a good one on 16. I chipped in on 15 and 1. That was kind of nice. Yeah, I didn't make many early on, but I made a couple around the turn and had that one little stretch there. I think I was 7-under through eight holes, and that kind of was the round for me.

Q. Seems like you would feed off each other on a day like today. Do you, and where do you feel it?
PHIL MICKELSON: I think Tiger got a little upset there when I ended up getting on that streak because he started out with 6-under the next six holes. That very well could have been what happened. It was fun. You know, Vijay played great and Tiger and myself played well. I'm hoping if we both play well tomorrow, we'll have a great chance to be paired together in the last group on Monday.

Q. You both talked about that yesterday. You seemed confident that you guys were all going to have good days today.
PHIL MICKELSON: I felt like we were all going to play well today because it seemed like we were all starting to get it going a little bit, and we would just get a few breaks that didn't go our way, maybe a putt lipped out or maybe a bad bounce or what have you, and we just didn't get it going. But I just sensed that everybody was going to come out ready today because we all needed a good round to get back in the tournament, and that's what we ended up doing.

Q. Seems like you didn't miss too many fairways.
PHIL MICKELSON: Yeah, I ended up missing two fairways today right there, and the biggest thing for me has been driving, and unfortunately I hit one bad drive yesterday that led to a triple. But other than that, playing from the fairways allowed me to play aggressively to these pins and be thinking birdie on every hole rather than fighting for par.

Q. Obviously a lot more fun for you guys today being collectively 19-under par, but it had to be more fun for the crowd, and this is what they were hoping for with the three of you playing this week. Just comment on that and what you felt from the crowd.
PHIL MICKELSON: Well, we were all kind of hoping and expecting to play like this yesterday, as well. But you can't get it going all the time.
But today it seemed like it was lining up for it. You could tell that we were getting ready to play, and hopefully everybody that's been so nice and so supportive of this tournament to come out here and partake in this event, hopefully they enjoyed the round from us.

Q. You had two practice rounds here but you hadn't played here before?
PHIL MICKELSON: The only round I played was Wednesday in the Pro-Am, and so I'm still --

Q. Figuring it out?
PHIL MICKELSON: Yeah, figuring out how the slopes on the greens are going to take it. I love the design and I love the setup. I love the way the greens are, around the greens, the way the rough is where you can actually play shots, and I think that I'm going to plan on making this a permanent stop. This is the first time I've been here, and I can't believe I haven't been here earlier. This is a wonderful tournament for us.

Q. It's a playoff now.
PHIL MICKELSON: That's right.

Q. Going to Fenway Park tonight?
PHIL MICKELSON: I am, actually. I'm looking forward to it.

Q. What team are you rooting for?
PHIL MICKELSON: Come on, you can't go to Fenway and not pull for the Sox.

Q. Can you describe your shot on 2, your third, big mound you had to go over?
PHIL MICKELSON: It was just a 45-yard shot. I hit a pretty good one in there about three feet.

Q. Can you talk the about the spin? I was amazed you had that much spin coming back from such a short distance.
PHIL MICKELSON: I guess that's probably why we're on the inside of the ropes and why you're on the outside. You're a good player, too, Doug, don't get me wrong (laughter).
When I looked at it, I thought that was kind of an obvious shot, but maybe it wasn't. I don't know.

Q. It's amazing for those of us that are lay people to watch your talent when you do something like that. I mean, everybody who was standing back there kind of went, oh, my God, when it spun back like that. Comment on having that effect with your short game.
PHIL MICKELSON: Actually it was an easier shot than it looked because short of the hole kicked it -- it was a downhill, it would kick it to the hole, and behind would kick it back. So all I had to do was try to spin it as much as I could, and if it landed short it was still going to kick to the hole, and if I got it past it, it was a good chance it would come back. So I didn't feel like it was a hard shot. I felt like I just needed to spin it as much as I could and then I had a big margin of error.

Q. You couldn't say that the first time?
PHIL MICKELSON: I could have, but it's much easier to rough you up (laughter).

Q. When you first heard about the FedExCup, what was your sense then, and has it changed at all since you've started to play in it?
PHIL MICKELSON: I'm not sure. I mean, I think that I won't have a good comment for you on the FedExCup for a couple years. I think that I've got to give it a fair chance to play out and see how the individual events go and see how the overall chase for the Cup goes. The first year we're going to need to do a few tweaks, you can tell, and I'm curious to see how next year's scheduling is going to be.
There's a lot of little areas in there that are critical I think in the first couple years on whether it makes it or not.

Q. Jack was in for a little meeting on Wednesday. Did you fill out your sheet on who you wanted to play with?
PHIL MICKELSON: He said not to bring it until Monday of the Presidents Cup, which I will, and I certainly won't comment on it. I knew you were going to ask me that, so I may as well tell you now.

Q. At a normal TOUR event you three guys wouldn't play together. Would it be good to do this more often?
PHIL MICKELSON: Well, I think it would. I mean, I think it would. Certainly the last three years this random computer pairings has randomly had us on opposite tee times every day for three years (laughter).

Q. Funny how that works out.
PHIL MICKELSON: Yeah, anyway, but I enjoy it. This was actually a really interesting day because I've been working with Butch Harmon, as you know, and in the past I haven't really played that well with Tiger per se. But he told me a couple things that he likes to do, and I kind of was watching for it, and I chuckled throughout the round when I'd pick up on it. And it was just -- I think that working with Butch has really helped me understand how to get my best golf when I play in the same group as Tiger, and I'm hoping I have a chance to do that on Monday.

Q. Anything you can tell us, the things you look for?
PHIL MICKELSON: Oh, no, I'm not about to tell you. I'm not even going to go there. But just a couple things that have been very interesting, and certainly the stories have been great (laughter). But just a few things to watch for. And it's really helped because I find myself chuckling at it now and played much more relaxed and had a good time today.

Q. Kind of demystified the guy for you?
PHIL MICKELSON: I wouldn't say that. That's all I'd really care to go for. I'm sharing with you a little piece and you keep asking for more.

Q. Are you hoping you guys get paired together again next week?
I'd like to play well tomorrow and I'd like him to play well tomorrow, so hopefully we both have a chance on Monday and maybe get paired together. That would be fun.

Q. How about Chicago and Atlanta, keep the first-two-round pairing going?
PHIL MICKELSON: Yeah, that would be fun.

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