September 6, 2013 - Graham DeLaet chatted with Canadian reporters on Thursday via a teleconference and not surprisingly the questions surrounded two main themes: the Presidents Cup and the FedEx Cup.
There were a few diversions from the serious side of things on the 45-minute call such as whether he would be keeping his now-famous playoff beard for the Presidents Cup or what he thought his wife, Ruby, would do with the $10 million if he were to win the FedEx Cup.
But for the most part, DeLaet talked about the achievements he's made in his breakout year, one that is still building to a crescendo. In some ways, it's hard to digest everything he's accomplished so far; the list is long and varied.
"I was speaking with one of my buddies (on Wednesday)," DeLaet said, "and he was going through some things like the world rankings, the money list and FedEx Cup and guys I'm ahead of. I kind of sat back and thought, 'Wow, this has just been an unbelievable year.'"
Yes it has. In addition to the two cups he'll be gunning for over the next month, there's also the fact that come next year, he'll be playing in all four majors, as well as the no-cut World Golf Championship events.
For a kid from Weyburn, Sask., with the self-taught swing whose career appeared in jeopardy just a few years ago when he required back surgery, it's all pretty heady stuff.
"I was playing with an old college teammate here in Idaho and we were just kind of talking and said, 'Remember when we used to chip and putt around greens and play rounds of golf and we'd always say to each other, `When we're in the Masters, this and that, or what I play in the Open Championship, I'm going to do this or that or whatever?'
"It's reality now and it's unbelievable. I still don't think it's really sunk in. You're playing in the Masters next year. It's remarkable and I'm super-excited about it."
After taking this week off, DeLaet heads to Chicago for the third leg of the FedEx Cup, the BMW Championship. He's currently fifth in the standings and if he can hold or improve that mark he can control his fate and win the richest prize in golf.
Despite the fact he's still looking for that first PGA Tour win, he called the opportunity a realistic goal. And why not? He happens to be playing as well as anyone on Tour right now.
After he's finished with that, he'll head to Muirfield Village where he'll suit up for Nick Price's International side in the Presidents Cup. DeLaet called making the team the top achievement of his career so far - at least until he gets that victory.
While he knows his team is the definitive underdog, he's ready to take a run at the Yanks and said he'll take on whomever Captain Price wants.
"I'm not intimidated by playing with or against Tiger and Phil and all these great players, because I feel like my game can hold up well, and it's just going out and playing golf. Committing to each shot as best you can and accepting the outcome."
DeLaet will have to brush up a bit on his four-ball and alternate-shot skills. He hasn't played either since he represented Canada in the World Cup in 2008 and '09. His last adventure with match play came in the Canadian Amateur when that event still used the format.
"I actually feel it suits my game pretty well," he stated. "You can be a lot more aggressive when needed and also play smart when needed.
"It's obviously a totally different game. You're playing more against your competitor than you are the golf course. It's exciting to think about right now. I can't wait to play it."
DeLaet has been picking the brains of his teammates such as Ernie Els and Adam Scott as well as the only other Canadian to play in the event, Mike Weir. The lefthander played a practice round with DeLaet at Hartford this year and they chatted about the experience. When DeLaet made the squad, Weir sent him a congratulatory text. The two will likely talk again in the coming weeks.
"I was actually planning on giving him a call and just picking his brain a little bit," said DeLaet, who called Weir his idol growing up.
There's so much to come from DeLaet, not only in the next few weeks, but the coming years. His talent seems endless and his desire strong. It's exciting to watch him progress and improve and keep smiling.
Oh and as for those other riveting questions? The beard will likely come off and that possible $10 million cheque being handled by his wife? "It's going to me," he said with a laugh.
Sure it is Graham, sure it is. - See more at: http://scoregolf.com/blog/bob-weeks/2013/september/delaet-ready-for-fedex-presidents-cups#sthash.YP5AJcjO.dpuf