Despite what you’d think, it’s not always hot in Florida. It was only in the upper 50s when Danielle Kang stepped to the microphone on Tuesday and the Las Vegas native was not necessarily enjoying the feeling.
“If it's cold my body tightens up; if it's hot I'm ready to go. I play really well in heat. I do not play well in the cold. We can all look at my stats. I miss the cut almost every year in the British Open,” she said with a laugh.
Those variables in her game are little things that Kang is looking to tighten up as she heads into 2022. This offseason, she worked hard with coach Butch Harmon on building a smooth, consistent style to her swing and her overall game.
“I think we're more focused on how I feel and where my body is to be able to do with the swing he's taught me. To be able to produce the speed that I can produce on the range,” said Kang. “I sometimes don't. I go up to the range and I'm swinging probably seven miles per hour slower. Those are the things we're trying to be consistent with.”
One part of her game where Kang excels is her approach shots. According to KPMG’s Performance Insights, she was tied for second in average proximity from 150-175 yards in 2021, placing those shots to just outside 31 feet. Kang says Lake Nona is more about “golf shot making” than the previous venue, putting a premium on her elite placement rather than long bombing. And at a course that’s relatively new to her repertoire, Kang is choosing to focus on experience and performance rather than outcome.
“I am pretty stressed out with the golf course starting the first week, but just got to do the best you can,” said Kang. “Treat it like a major and take the shots when I can and be able to be aggressive when I can as well.”