Press Conference - Saturday, January 21, 2017
DOUG MILNE: We would like to welcome Adam Hadwin to the interview room. Obviously brought you in for a very good reason, 13-under, 59, here in round three of the CareerBuilder Challenge. Puts you in prime position to start the final round tomorrow. There's all kind of numbers I could throw out to you, second 59 in tournament history here, fourth on a par 72, and ninth player in PGA TOUR to shoot a 59 or better. So, congratulations on the incredible round today, and with that I'll just turn it over to you for a few comments.
ADAM HADWIN: Thank you. Wow. I don't really know what to say just yet. I think it's still sinking in. I think everybody talks about kind of they were in a zone and I think that's kind of what happened out there. I was thinking about it, I knew exactly where I was, I knew exactly what I needed to do, it just didn't seem to matter.
I got away with a few shots coming down the stretch. I didn't hit a very solid shot into 14 and it carried far enough, rolled up to 15 feet, made the putt.
I didn't hit a very good, a very solid -- when I say not a very good, it was unsolid, low into the par-3 15th hole. Landed on the front and rolled up 15 feet past the pin, was able to make that putt.
Frankly, the best hole I played was the 16th hole, the only one I parred or the one that I parred. So, it's pretty incredible what just happened.
I think what gives sort of me the most confidence is that I knew exactly what I needed to do and through that whole process, if anything, I was thinking 58. So, to be able to do it when I needed to, I know I was nervous, putt barely went in on 17, and I only had six feet.
So, I was happy to see the putt drop on 18. Last thing I wanted to do was miss a 3-footer for 59, so. I was more relieved than anything walking off that green.
DOUG MILNE: Not many people were over there to see. Was it a good thing or a more intimidating thing to see your amateur partner drop that bomb from off the front of the green?
ADAM HADWIN: We had a lot of fun today. I think what helped was we had a great group. I was playing with Colt Knost and as most of you know, he's a character and so everything was very light. We had a lot of fun. The amateur guys actually started to play pretty well the last few holes as well. So we had a lot of fun and some fist bumps. And to watch kind of every putt, basically, on that 18th green go in kind of helped a little bit. Made the hole a little bit bigger.
DOUG MILNE: Questions?
Q. You started 10 shots back today. You have the lead now. Is that the most surprising part of the round?
ADAM HADWIN: You know what, it might be. The most surprising part might be is I never even thought about it. But I guess when you're chasing 59, you probably don't think about things like that.
Yeah, obviously, sitting today at 4-under and I think -- what was the lead going into today? 14-under. So, it was one of those ones where I think, just kind of went out and I wasn't thinking, I just needed to go play good golf. That started to happen and then I got focused on shooting 59. And it wasn't until walking up 18 where my amateur partner told me that I was in the lead and Colt's telling him to shut up. I'm like, it's okay, it's okay, it's fine.
Q. Well, that brings up the follow-up, which is, you go out, you par the first hole then you make six straight. Okay. There's your good round. Where does your translation from a good round to a, hey, maybe this is 59?
ADAM HADWIN: After hole 11. I said to my caddie, I said, we need four more. And I'm not sure he knew what to respond to me at that point, because he knew I was playing well and he knew that clearly I was thinking about it. But we just went about our business and kept making putts.
I guess even at that point, I guess I moved to 10-under, I knew I was playing well, I had a peak at one of the leaderboards at La Quinta, there's not many, which can be a good thing, can be a bad thing. But it was just a matter of keeping, just kind of keep the momentum going and keep making putts.
And then once I walked off 11, the objective was to shoot 59.
Q. Do you think tomorrow will feel any differently having done what you just did, versus if you just shot a 67 to take a one-shot lead?
ADAM HADWIN: Yeah, I think it makes tomorrow harder. They say one of hardest things in golf is follow up a low round. And I was, what, one of nine guys to break 60 now, so I can't go much lower. I think that I just have to figure out a way to get rid of it. I have to figure out a way to convince myself that I just shot 67 and take a one-shot lead, that I'm playing good golf right now, and just keep going doing my thing. Just try to lower the expectations again. Because I'm not going to make 13 birdies again tomorrow. I mean, I could, I guess, but chances are pretty low, pretty slim. I don't know if anybody's shot two 59s?
DOUG MILNE: No.
ADAM HADWIN: Well, I could be the first.
DOUG MILNE: There you go. We'll have you right back here again.
ADAM HADWIN: But the Stadium Course is a much tougher course than La Quinta. It's a Sunday. I got a chance to win a golf tournament. That's what you want, that's what you want going into Sunday and I'm excited about that. But just going to have to refocus and go out and just play one shot at a time again.
Q. Have you shot a 59 anywhere?
ADAM HADWIN: No. No.
Q. You became the first Canadian on the PGA TOUR ever to do this. As you know, back home Saturday night is Hockey Night in Canada. Tonight is might be Hadwin Night in Canada. What does this mean, do you think, to the Canadian golf and did you have a lot of Canadian fans cheering you on today?
ADAM HADWIN: Do you live in the desert?
Q. Yeah, I do.
ADAM HADWIN: Yeah, so you know how many Canadians are here, right? Yeah. You know what, I've said this, I played well last year and got myself in the final group and had a chance to win going into the back nine. Somebody told me at the end of the day that I had the second loudest cheer going off the first hole besides Mickelson.
So, they come out in full support for all of us Canadians. There's a lot of them down here. To be able to put a round together in front of family and friends and lots of people that I know is pretty exciting and I hope to be able to go out there tomorrow and have a chance coming up 18 to do something special.
Q. Do you do anything different with your putting or was that the best putting round of your life?
ADAM HADWIN: Well, certainly most amount of putts I made in a round. I feel like even the first two days I felt like I rolled it so well and I was just inches, it was either catching right edge or left edge or six inches too hard or too soft. So, I knew this week I had been rolling it really well and they just went in today. Just one of those days.
Q. I got two questions. What do you think you'll say to Justin Thomas when you bump into him next?
ADAM HADWIN: I don't know. "Tied you," I guess. I mean, the kid's playing some incredible golf right now. I don't think anybody's won besides him and Matsuyama yet have they?
DOUG MILNE: If you take the fall events. Brendan Steele. But...
ADAM HADWIN: It's pretty good though.
DOUG MILNE: Yeah.
ADAM HADWIN: So, I mean I would love to start a run like he's on, absolutely. I played the WEB.COM with him, we had great years that year when we both got out here and he's taken off. So, special player. So, it would be, I would be happy to join him as a PGA TOUR winner at the end of tomorrow.
Q. The other question was, your lowest was 63 a couple years ago, but have you shot a lower score back home in Canada?
ADAM HADWIN: Yeah, I think it's 61, but that was a par 70 track that I have grown up playing. It's only 6,300 yards or 6,400 yards, but I haven't been this close, no.
Q. I had a chance a couple days ago to talk to Al Geiberger about all these 59s. All eight of them until today. And he said he thinks that the younger players just don't have the mental barrier of a 59 anymore, because it's happening more. Why do you think all of a sudden, over the last seven years or so, 59 seems to be at least a weekly possibility, if not a reality?
ADAM HADWIN: Well, I think that's pretty much it, right? Nobody said that a four-minute mile could be run, right? Four-minute mile? Yeah, nobody said it could be broken and then one person broke it and now it's a routine thing, right? Is it a five-minute mile or four-minute mile? It's the same thing. Once you, yeah, like once you see it done once -- I mean, there's a 58, I mean, I could have been -- yeah, so until somebody shoots 57, 59's nothing anymore.
I'm just kidding. No, but Al has a point. Once you see it done, you know it can be done. Up until this point, up until 58 was shot on the WEB.COM, I mean, can it be done? Can you make 14 birdies on a round or 13 birdies on a par 71? I mean, who knows. But it's been done. Now you know. It's still a pretty cool number to get to though.
Q. Kind of along those same lines, when it's happening with a guy you played with on the WEB.COM in Justin and you see a guy like Kevin Kisner give it a run the other day, then do you start to think about that number more and say, there's no reason I can't do that, too?
ADAM HADWIN: You don't ever start the round like that. I didn't go out to La Quinta thinking I was going to shoot 59. I knew that I was playing well, I knew that if I hit good shots that I would give myself lots of good looks at birdie and it was just a matter of hitting line and speed and I started to do that early, I knew I was playing well, and then instinct I guess just kind of takes over and you just kind of roll with it.
Like I said, I was thinking 59, just solely because I knew I had a good chance at it, I knew I was playing well, I knew that it was just a matter of keeping it going. If I had have made a couple pars after 11, who knows what I would have been thinking. Maybe I would have calmed myself down and said, just put together a good round or finish off a good round, but it's a lot of fun.
Q. Justin Thomas was talking about how shooting a 59 on a Thursday was really surreal to be over a putt that meant so much during the first round. Did that have a similar feeling for you today, being that it wasn't to win a tournament that it was just to put together something historical?
ADAM HADWIN: Yeah, especially this is my first event of the new year. I haven't played since World Cup the end of November, so six weeks or so. And to be able to get the nerves going before going into the final round and knowing that I'm going to have them tomorrow playing in the final group, having a chance to win, I think helps a lot. It was nice to make a few putts when I was nervous as well. Not to say that the putts weren't fairly easy, I left myself really good chances, I didn't have difficult putts to shoot 59. But sometimes maybe those are the hardest to make. You expect to make them. So, it was good to hit some good shots and to make a few putts while feeling like I was coming down the stretch.
Q. How does closing out a 59 feel compared to closing out a tournament coming down the stretch of that?
ADAM HADWIN: Pretty much the same. It's not far off. You know what you have to do. Going up the last, I knew I just needed to make par. But very similar to if I knew I just had to make par to win a tournament. I feel like sometimes it might be easier having to make birdie to tie or to win or something like that, kind of. But I think it correlates a hundred percent. It's the exact same things that I'll be feeling on the first tee tomorrow when I tee off.
Q. You flew the green on 18 and it was just short of the bunker, I'm not going to call it lucky, but there was a little bit of luck involved there, it could have very easily got in the bunker. Were there any shots like that all day long that you were like, well, geez, I got, skinned that one?
ADAM HADWIN: I don't think you shoot 59 without some good breaks. There was more than a few shots, yeah. I mean, I could roll back through almost the entire round and tell you some shots that I got away with.
I hit it right of 11, going for the green in two and had a clear shot to the pin. I got a good break there.
Like I said, I didn't -- or sorry, on hole 13 -- hole 14, I didn't feel like I hit a great 6-iron from the fairway. It worked out. I hit it to 15 feet.
I didn't hit a great tee ball on 15, it worked out. Rolled up 15 feet.
So, same thing on 17.
I didn't, I didn't flush it coming down the stretch by any means, but it was good enough and I think that's, whether it's to shoot 59 or win a golf tournament, you're going to need some luck and you're going to need some bounces and you're going to need some breaks and it's just whether or not you can take advantage of them. Today I did.
DOUG MILNE: You have a history here in the desert. You won the PGA TOUR Canada event your first TOUR event.
ADAM HADWIN: Yeah, Desert Dunes.
DOUG MILNE: When was that?
ADAM HADWIN: I think 2010. November, 2010. Yeah. And I think that was my first Canadian TOUR, that was my first victory Canadian TOUR. Again, in front of a bunch of Canadians and won in a playoff and kind of went on and won again in early 2011 on the Canadian TOUR in Columbia as well, and went on to have a good year that year. So maybe I can kick start a nice 2017.
DOUG MILNE: Last thing, if we could get you to run through your card real quick. If you can recall your birdies. The card in your head.
ADAM HADWIN: Like the whole round or just what I made?
DOUG MILNE: Just birdies? The whole thing. Just take us through the whole thing.
ADAM HADWIN: Like just a brief description? Or just?
DOUG MILNE: Clubs, yards, putts.
ADAM HADWIN: Off the tee on 1 I hit driver left. I had to chip underneath the tree. Hit a 6-iron over the back right of the green. Chipped it up to a couple feet and made par.
Hit driver left on 2 as well. Was lucky to have a shot went up and over the trees with a 9-iron. 30 feet. Left of the pin. Made that.
Then hit 5-iron on 3 to, I don't know, about 10 feet or so. Made that.
4, hit a hybrid off the tee, left myself a little further back than I wanted to, left a 7-iron out right, just hung up on to know of the bunker, had to go down probably three quarters of the way of the shaft on a hybrid. One foot in the bunker, kind of straddling everything. Made it.
Guys kind of laughed at me in my group for that one. It was a bit, it was unexpected, especially compared to the first two birdies.
Q. How far?
ADAM HADWIN: 18, 20 feet.
Then par-5, beautiful drive down the middle, hit hybrid on, 35 feet, 2-putted.
Next par-5, another great drive down the middle, pulled a hybrid into the bunker left, but it was pin high. Had enough room, got up-and-down. About five feet.
Par-3, tough pin, tucked front right. Hit a real good shot in there though about six feet. Right below the hole. Straight up the hill. Was able to get that one.
Hit driver on 8. Just beside the bunker. 118, I think, 119 yards. Hit pitching wedge. Little short. About 30 feet. Almost made it. Tapped in for par.
3-wood on 9. Yes. 3-wood on 9. Back right pin. I think 8-iron. I think 8-iron. I would have to double check. But I think 8-iron to, again, another good shot in there, six, seven feet. Something like that. Was able to make that.
Took driver over the tree on 10. Perfect spot. Had 18 feet. Kind of rolled it by three feet, was able to make the come back putt.
Fairway on 11. Pulled it a little bit into the bunker on the left, but got up even with the second ridge in the green and pretty straightforward bunker shot down the hill. Trickled it out to about a foot. Tapped in for birdie.
I think best shot of the day came on 12, par-3. Right in between a 5 and 6, just depended on what the wind was doing. And it was kind of laying down a little bit and I struck a 6-iron probably the best I've hit a golf shot this week. Just stung it underneath the wind. Got it up there about eight feet and made that.
Perfect drive on the next hole on the par-5, over the corner. 245 or something. Hit hybrid right. Got away with it. Had a good lie. Flopped it up, took my medicine, gave myself a putt at it. Hit it to -- like I had a 20-footer. Was able to make that as well. It was going a little quick, but it hit the back of the hole. So a little relieved after that one.
Then good drive on the next. Down the middle, I think we had 185. I tried to hit a little 6-iron. Left it out a little right from where I was looking, but had enough to carry the green, hit on the green and rolled up nicely to about 15 feet short of the pin. Made that.
15, 208, hit 5-iron, little thin, it covered probably six, seven yards on the green, rolled out nicely. Rolled it behind the pin about 15 feet. And, honestly, I was thinking this is one of those putts that can get away from you pretty good and I knew I had a good round going and I didn't want to screw up a good round by ramming it five feet by and missing. So I was more focused on the speed there than anything and happened to pick a great line and was able to make it.
Hybrid off the next hole. Playing down breeze on 16. Whiffed it a little bit of the left myself a little bit further than would I like. But I had 208, 190 front edge. Hit 6-iron perfect. One of the best shots of the day as well. About 15 feet. Thought I hit a great putt. Just broke off left.
17, 3-wood. I didn't hit it great, but middle of the fairway again. I had 172 yards, hit a little 7-iron. Was looking for it to drift left a little bit of that pin and held its line and had just enough to carry and roll up to about six feet. Made that.
Then 3-iron off 18th hole. 168 yards into the pin. Hit 8, thinking with the wind just let it drift left, and maybe some adrenaline kicked in, was a little bit long there. Stayed above the bunker. Pretty straightforward chip shot again. Just needed to get it going down the hill and rolled out to three feet and was able to make it. So 59.
Q. How many putts?
ADAM HADWIN: How many putts, Doug? 21 or 22.
DOUG MILNE: I knew you were going to ask.
ADAM HADWIN: I heard both numbers, but I wasn't keeping track. They just went in.
DOUG MILNE: All right. Well, Adam, congratulations, good luck tomorrow.