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September 1, 2011

Phil Mickelson


PHIL MICKELSON: I just got it (a belly putter). I just got it Monday. Last week I didn't have any idea about the idiosyncrasies of it, and I played with Keegan Bradley, and I asked him a bunch of questions, and ended up having Odyssey make up the exact replica of the putter he has. I got it on Monday and I've been talking to him on the phone a little bit, little tidbits on ball position, setup and so forth. It's awkward to me, but so many guys have had success with it that I thought I'd give it a try.

Q. Instead of him getting advice from you, is it strange that you're getting advice from a rookie?
PHIL MICKELSON: Yeah, it is funny. You can always learn, and he putts it extremely well, and it rolls so nicely off the face, so I was asking him questions throughout the round last week when we were paired together about, again, ball position, eye position, hands, grip, all that stuff to get it to swing a proper way. So I was able to kind of jump over a lot of the learning curve with it, I think, because of him.

Q. Do you think it'll be in play tomorrow? Do you have any idea?
PHIL MICKELSON: Probably, yeah, probably. I was a little shady with it on the front nine but a little bit better with it on the back. Look, I'm willing to -- I don't mind trying new things. I've hit two drivers and no drivers in Opens, and I don't mind trying something different. We'll see.

Q. What's the length?
PHIL MICKELSON: Honestly, I don't know. I just copied his. Like I said, I went to Odyssey after the tournament Saturday night and asked the guy to make an exact replica except the insert. I like the White Hot XG insert, he has the regular White Hot. That's the only difference.

Q. Of the learning curve, what's the toughest part so far that you've found?
PHIL MICKELSON: Because my hands aren't moving back per se, because it's anchored, the stroke for distance is different. It's not like it's harder or easier, it's just different, and so getting the right touch has been something I'm working on.

Q. I know you were asked last week, but so many guys are winning with the long putter now. In your opinion does it diminish the player's ability to be a good putter?
PHIL MICKELSON: I don't know enough to answer that properly.

Q. Since you played with Keegan, any impressions on his game and how he handles things so far?
PHIL MICKELSON: Yeah, I really like him. I think a lot of him as a person and his golf game. He's great for the game to see win and to see him win the PGA. It's terrific.

Q. 20 minutes into the press conference, Commissioner Tim Finchem announced that television contracts will be extended until 2021 on NBC and CBS, basically the previous contract will stay the same. Do you like the methodology of two main networks and then one main network on Thursday and Friday?
PHIL MICKELSON: I probably don't know enough in that area to give you a great answer, but I like the people that we've -- I like the people at NBC, Tommy Roy and the guys, and Lance Barrow at CBS has been great and the Golf Channel has been terrific, too, and really promoted the sport of golf. I really like the partners we have. But I don't know which plan is best or whatnot, but I really like the guys we work with.

Q. Any feeling about playing here? You've won here obviously, got some good memories.
PHIL MICKELSON: This is one of my favorite courses we play all year. I think it has incredible great risk-reward. I think that the holes here have some really good birdie opportunities with the drivable par-4, reachable par-5. I think it makes it really exciting for birdies. But I also think the hard holes are really hard, which I love, because you'll get turnover for guys -- you'll make up ground on the tough holes with par and you'll make up ground on the easy holes with birdie. I think it's just a terrific course. And the æsthetics of are spectacular. But the way it plays is wonderful. It's really one of our better courses.

Q. Talk about the fans here.
PHIL MICKELSON: Yeah, the people here have been great. Having won here in '07 was really fun.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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