Before playing off the pine needles in the playoff, Watson carefully examines his lie, 164 yards from the hole.
Watson: Couldn't ask for a better lie. The ball was a little above my feet, so that made it easier to hook it. It was just enough uphill to get me excited. I moved a few twigs and leaves, but I was just trying to slow myself down. The whole time I'm saying to myself, This is perfect.
In 2010, after Mickelson hit his memorable shot out of the trees on the 13th hole during the final round, he said his biggest concern was that his feet would slip on the pine straw during the downswing.
Watson: I wasn't worried about my footing. The ground was pretty firm. The longer the club, the faster the swing, so with a six-iron like Phil had, it's more of a fear.
Watson opts for his gap wedge.
Watson: Off pine straw I always think the ball [a 2011 version of the Titleist Pro V1x] is going to go farther because the lie is cushiony. It's like hitting off a mat at the range—the club bounces into the ball. I normally hit my gap wedge 135, maybe 140. The extra 25 yards was adrenaline and the hook spin.
Matt Rollins, Ping Golf's senior PGA Tour rep: He used a Tour-S 52° gap wedge, True Temper Dynamic Gold X100 shaft, D5 swing weight. The unique thing about the clubhead is that it's made of 8620 steel, which is softer than the 1704 we typically put in. Bubba likes the increased feel.
Watson: It wasn't the club, it wasn't the ball. It all comes down to technique and belief.
Sam Snead, another feel player extraordinaire, was once asked how he hits a draw. "I think draw," Snead said.
Watson: I'm like Sam Snead—I think about the shot I want to hit, and my body and my mind create it. But with a hook, it's all about the hands. All I thought about was rolling over my wrists. But belief is more important than technique. One thing about Augusta—we've seen shot after shot out of the trees. We've seen Phil on 13, Tiger's hit a couple amazing ones at 11, and I remember Ernie [Els] had a great one there too. That was a big thing for me, knowing it's been done. When I stand over that ball, I'm not thinking about the crowd, I'm not thinking winning. All I'm thinking is, I gotta hook this ball. A lot. I got into that zone where everything went blank.