Posted by lewis on July 28, 2009 at 7:36 am.


Kelly Slater

Why is Kelly Slater back at number one in the Power Rankings?  Because he holds the fate of the ASP in his hands.  If that isn’t power, I don’t know what is.  The question now is will Kelly use his vast influence for good or evil?  Lately, ASP insiders are looking at their talented figurehead and seeing more than the physical doppelganger of Lex Luthor.  Trouble is, the only Superman who can save the ASP is also Kelly Slater.  In each of his contest appearances over the course of the last couple months, Slater has played both roles: dominating Brazil, ruling the barrel at J-Bay and Superman-handling Huntington like, well, Superman.  But there’s been allusions to dissolution there, too: Kelly slapping the water at J-Bay as the ocean let him down, Kelly slapping the water at Huntington as the ocean let him down again.  He moved his frustrated hands across the surface of the waters with a vengeful callousness that hinted at the genesis of a super villain - Lex Luthor en utero.

More seriously, as Mr. Slater faces the grave responsibility of deciding the ASP’s future, I’m reminded of fact instead of fiction.  Although a new tour sounds good in theory, Kelly may find himself walking into a quagmire beyond his control, just as US military forces did in Iraq.  Destruction is easy -- overthrowing the existing regime will take only another flick of Slater’s Lex Luthor wrist against the surface of professional surfing’s waters.  But the process of rebuilding a stable governing tour may prove more difficult than Slater has envisioned.

I foresee two major problems:  First, the concept of contest results having validity at all is a bit of an illusion, kept in place by faith in the system.  The fact that we even begin to accept the fairness of completely subjective judging decisions is largely due to our familiarity with the current paradigm.  A bit like the way religious fanatics believe their belief system makes sense, simply because they’ve been raised in it.  If the format changes completely, once-devout fans may inevitably spot the holes in its logic.

The other issue is this:  How will they cull numbers with any semblance of fairness?  If they take the current Top 16 and ditch the rest, Tom Whitaker will be in and Dane Reynolds will be out.  But if they draw up a dream team of the subjectively most-talented surfers on earth, the new tour will be nothing more than an imperialistic popularity contest.  Look no further than Surfing Magazine’s recent article, in which they declared that Mitch Coleborn should be on the new elite tour… while current world #3 Adriano De Souza should not.

Reality isn’t easy, and change doesn’t come cheap.  Kelly may not like where he’s at, with title 10 out of reach.  But if he doesn’t buttress his idealism with informed advisors instead of yes-men, the king may find that Fiji looks more like Fallujah than he ever could have imagined.


Joel Parkinson

The decision has been made.  The role has been cast.  Now it’s time for the extras to follow the script, and play out the rest of the scenes.  Joel Parkinson will be world champion.  As with Slater in 2008, the universe seems to be ushering Joel towards this fate, and other contenders away from it, like a sheepdog nipping at heels.  How else to account for the inexplicable early-round losses of every other contender? Does Billabong’s influence run that deep?  It’s now easy to mistake 2009 for 1989; like Martin Potter, Parko seems to have suddenly snapped awake with a whiff of smelling salts, and convinced the field in a single event that he’s The Man.  In addition, it was intriguing to see how little Parko gambled on his way to victory at J-Bay – nearly every turn was low-risk, on rail, beautiful and timeless.  His approach was anything but futuristic - closer to Tom Curren circa 1992 than even Slater circa 1996.  The fins barely got loose over the course of his entire calculated run.  It was a performance even children of the 60s could relate to – call it neoclassicism.


C.J. Hobgood

There’s a bit of Mr. Miyagi in CJ Hobgood these days – he’s transitioning into his role as resident Sensei of the World Tour.  CJ’s proving to be the rare veteran who keeps progressing, pushing himself farther as his body ages and the competition creeps up.  Watching him attack the lip in Brazil this year, one got the distinct suspicion that Mr. Hobgood sleepwalked through the formative years of his career.  (Yes, I am excluding his anomalous 2001 title from the argument.) Simply put, there is an awareness to CJ’s approach that was lacking through many of his early seasons.  He’s taking risks that others are not, and finding that, like Slater, he has a gift for improbable recovery.  Although Kelly took the victory in Brazil, CJ placed the most consistently risky, radical bets of the event, going "all in" with each defining turn on each mediocre wave.  At J-Bay, CJ was felled with a strain of swine flu, leaving him weakened and lucky to make it through even his first heat vs. Miky Picon.  Watching CJ’s heat and then Damien’s was like watching Tom Hanks degenerate in Philadelphia, in reverse.


Adriano de Souza

Overconfidence is an interesting thing.  It causes humans to lose the ability to discern between things we can control and things we can’t.  Adriano De Souza’s career nestles snugly within the rewards of this overconfidence maxim.  To quote a recent New Yorker article by Malcolm Gladwell:

"The psychologist Ellen Langer once had subjects engage in a betting game against either a self-assured, well-dressed opponent or a shy and badly dressed opponent (in Langer’s delightful phrasing, the 'dapper' or the 'schnook' condition), and she found that her subjects bet far more aggressively when they played against the schnook. They looked at their awkward opponent and thought, I’m better than he is. Yet the game was pure chance: all the players did was draw cards at random from a deck, and see who had the high hand. This is called the 'illusion of control': confidence spills over from areas where it may be warranted ('I’m savvier than that schnook') to areas where it isn’t warranted at all ('and that means I’m going to draw higher cards')."

It doesn’t take a psychologist to tell you that Adriano is still viewed as the tour schnook, despite being firmly entrenched in the Top 3. In Brazil, Adriano was underestimated by Jeremy Flores, Bede Durbidge, and Joel Parkinson on his way to the finals.  Only Slater remained wary of him.  At J-Bay, the tables were turned on De Souza: he viewed Nathaniel Curran as the schnook, and lost accordingly when the ocean went flat.  Some things even world title contenders cannot control.


Mick Fanning

I remember reading a brilliant essay by Mickey Munoz years back, in which he envisioned the perfect surfer, and the perfect session.  I’m paraphrasing here, relying on a deficient memory ravaged by alcohol, but what Mickey pictured was this: a formless, out-of-shape surfer patiently studies the ocean.  He then surfs an entire session without expending any energy at all – floats out in a rip, catches a wave without paddling, gets barreled without engaging a rail, kicks out, lets the rip suck him back out, and does it again.  To Mickey, surfing wasn’t about athleticism and aggression.  Surfing boiled down to knowledge and flow.

That’s one way to see it.  Mick Fanning vs. Michel Bourez at J-Bay is another way to see it.  The Spartan vs. The Machine – two muscled gym-rats pushing each turn farther than it should go while Tom Curren watches, his right eyebrow raised a thousandth of a millimeter in an act of protest.  Mick put up 17.17 and lost the heat.  His year is dust.  Bourez has now beat Parko, Bede, Kelly, and Mick man-on-man in his short career.  He beat Fanning off a 10 that included three barrels and two claims.  If Mick had won Brazil and J-Bay, we’d still have a title race to look forward to.  Instead, Fanning was laid down to rest by surfer who probably does a fist pump claim when he grunts out his morning shit.


  • Mailman's Burro says:

    Taj’s burro, suck it

  • SS says:

    I get to share one thing with Kelly Slater today.

    That is, being first.

  • Mailman's Burro says:

    Taj’s burro, suck it….occupying space so the comment stands

  • SS says:

    Or second…

    Damn you….

  • Mailman's Burro says:

    SS, you don’t share shit with any world champions…you just woke up early.

  • Zeech says:

    Claiming you morning shit-
    I love it!
    Time for a fist pump

  • SS says:

    It’s sad, but it is true…..

    Slater, with his Illuminati like secret society of people who remain nameless… Could they be the modern day Priory of Scion? Could this secrety society of the New World Order be actually protecting their most public member?

    Answer me this…Does Slater’s bald head not evoke thoughts of the the Holy Grail? Furthermore, could he be the modern day Mary Magdellin of the Surfing World? Her blood and his the same?

    If that is the case, could that be why his daughter has been kept nearly as devoid of the public eye as the “offspring” of Michael Jackson? Could he be the last survivor of the bloodline of the Holy Family?

    Da Vinci Code-esque, I know…But, Kelly Slater, err Lex Luther, holds the fate of the surfing world in his celebrity crusted fingertips…


  • JimG says:

    Re. the new tour - Why? (see XFL). Does anyone believe that a gaggle of world-class surfers exists who just can’t conform to contests? The ASP weeds out the hype.

    Bottom line: any surfer who can consistently pull his maneuvers & actually ride a wave (as opposed to pump for speed & do one turn/air) will excel. Sure, some contests will involve luck, but the cream always rises. Does anyone think that Kelly, Parko, Mick, CJ, Taj, & most of top-44 (or at least top 32) are not the best in the world?

  • Kyle says:

    Keep up the great opinions….The Shape of a new tour is definitely problematic. It’s time for surfers to realize they are basically no different from figure skaters, or break dancers. There performances are simply judged in a subjective way. The danger is balancing the trend towards the mathematical nature of early skateboarding competitions on one side and elitist art critique hipster on the other. A new tour will need to be highly credible. Creating this brand could be fruitful or totally leave half these guys begging for quarters like street performers.

  • Sasha Vujabitch says:

    maybe they should put floating baskets on the waves so the surfers can dunk thier balls through them as they ride. this would take the subjectivity out of it.

  • Mo says:

    My mum has a jacket made out of Martin Potter’s Chest hair….she got it in France in 1990.

  • Faso says:

    In my opinion, your best Power Rankings 1-5 posted ever since you started your own blog…
    When the main core of your writing comes from critical surfing analysis mixed with a glimpse of irony and sarcasm, you can create quite an excellent piece for the readers. Keep them coming!

  • Ballz says:

    Genius. Completely on point about the problems with Slat’s proposed tour of 16. Hopefully, he will see the holes and simply use his idea as leverage to affect significant change on the ASP. If it goes through, neither tour will have the credibility of the present tour, as flawed as it is. Not to mention, who has the time to follow 2 tours?

    And holy shit, Adriano looks just like Jerry Lewis. Thanks for the Peter Sellers reference in the last post. Just added Being There to my netflix queue.

  • yesmen says:

    Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes!

  • sad realization says:

    Every one bitches and moans about how their sponsor made hero’s are thwarted by the WCT’s/WQS’s stringent judging format. Budding flowers relegated to dirty turds or decade long WQS careers that never flourish. Guess what, that is where they belong. Bunch of pampered, overpaid, pansies who will be begging the local guys they burn everyday for construction jobs in a few years. You want explosive mind boggling new school tricks. Watch a Steele movie, but remember that that is cut from 1000’s of hours of failed attempts and awkward arm waving successes. A new tour featuring your favorite freesurf guys would probably look a lot like the 999.75 hours of video that did not make the final cut. I can see that failure rate, watching groms and C grade pros at my local spots. The guys we see on the WCT are the guys who are exciting to watch every session, with a few notable exceptions, they can ALL bust out mind boggling heats any given time. For one, I like seeing the underdogs knock down the media darlings. Some days I think Mick Campbell may be my favorite surfer!

  • Angry Bald Guy says:

    Vindication! Look at Numero Uno bitches and weep. Lex Luthor and Slats at the top of the heap! Nary a follicle between their 2 heads. I actually pity you poor bastards with mellons covered in ape fur.

  • Angry Villager with Pitchfork says:

    @ David Mailman, I don’t do requests. If you have a problem with these fuckwits, organize your own irrational mob of villagers. I’m exhausted and disillusioned. Not one fucking car burned or even turned over in Huntington. Don’t worry, it won’t happen again.

  • Robert's Your Mother's Brother says:

    Well, you nailed this one.

    Especially insightful and perceptive: “First, the concept of contest results having validity at all is a bit of an illusion, kept in place by faith in the system. The fact that we even begin to accept the fairness of completely subjective judging decisions is largely due to our familiarity with the current paradigm. A bit like the way religious fanatics believe their belief system makes sense, simply because they’ve been raised in it. If the format changes completely, once-devout fans may inevitably spot the holes in its logic.”

    Held in place by the lemmings. Eager to accept whatever is fed to them. Now, how about the Surfer Magazine “SURFER NAMES THE 50 GREATEST SURFERS OF ALL TIME”. Literary abortion from the ‘bible’ itself. And you thought the magazine was full of shit when Sam ‘I Am’ George was at the rudder.

  • Stu says:

    Great review, Lewis. I hope the clowns at Surflie are reading this and kicking themselves, again.

  • Jamon Bagel says:

    Ah, man AVWP, I’m fresh out of toothpicks and was going to ask you to keep me from falling apart.

    Really, no requests at all? How about if you just stab Ballz a little bit?

  • bored with er/ing/tws et all says:

    I know this isn’t a new topic but is any one else completely bored with all of the major surf publications? I used to read every one cover to cover now I can barely get myself to look at the pictures let alone read the absolutely boring as articles (and this is while taking a dump). How about Lewis as editor of Surfer?

  • jarek says:

    I hope slater kills pro surfing and 15 years from now nobody surfs cause it ain’t popular and there is no money in it–’cause I still will

  • ross says:

    good post. I’m happy that Joel will win this year - a surfer of his rank should not go a career with no title. Same for Fanning when he won.

    In reality, Kelly has not been beat by anybody this year - only the ocean has beaten him. Every one of his heats that he’s lost this year has been because the ocean hasn’t cooperated…and that includes the US Open. Losing to someone who surfed a heat better is one thing, but losing because mother nature hasn’t provided a canvas is another. I think it’s frustrating for Kelly to lose to lesser surfers only because he’s not given a chance. We lose as well that is unless you hate Kelly as I know some do.

    If a new tour can somehow provide a format where the actual 16 best surfers are competing in non wave starved heats then that could be worth watching. And Mitch Coleburn should be on this tour to the exclusion of De Souza.

  • Wagner Wolfhurst says:

    If you watched the “expression session” at huntington this weekend, there’s a glimpse at the future tour. A 1 in 1000 success ratio. CJ landed a decent air while the rest of the heroes tried, tried, and tried again to land the siiickest maneuver you’ll never see.

    What can Kelly honestly do to revolutionize competition? My only suggestion is hold every contest in Indonesia and guarantee world class surf every day for every event. Then again, it will probably get boring watching a bunch of pros get 10 second barrels while we’re in cubicles or wherever it is we are that isn’t getting smoking surf.

    My suggestion, just quit watching them altogether and buy your own ticket to surfing paradise, be it Bali, Mentwais, Oz, etc.

  • ODB says:

    Jim G is on point.

    The best surfers need to balance great maneuvers they can land within a certain time period. Thats pretty sick to witness in person. If judging is the problem, then make it less subjective.

    Just have 10 judges that judge certain aspects of a ride and give those aspects weightings based on conditions. Waves, Style, Power, Difficulty and Innovation judges all ranking their particular aspect of a ride. This may make judging less subjectivity… I know ranking girls 1-10 is hard to do without taking everything into consideration (ass, tits, legs, etc.. ) And I know if I have 4 of my other friends properly calculating each aspect of the Hoe and we combine our data and find the average, I would be hard pressed to say that our findings weren’t more accurate than the simple motherfuck using the 1-10 overall ranking.

  • Jiblet Gravy says:

    Heavyweight power rankings Lewis. No wonder it took a few days, that was some of the most spot on sport literature I have read in a while. The Slater Piece alone could and should be chillin in the New Yorker, S.I. or The Surfers Journal to name a few. We’re lucky you do this shit for free for us.

  • raychild says:

    Ballz, your choice of screen name becomes ever so apparent in your latest post. You clearly enjoy lapping them. Lap.

  • ReB says:

    all right.

    how about Power Rankings for the QS ? :-)

  • Stu says:

    Or a power rankings of the various power rankings out there now.

  • PacNW says:

    The take on CJ was spot on. Well worth the wait. Which is probably more than I’ll be saying in two months, after the Trestles contest. I’m just having a hard time getting into professional surfing right now. For starters, it should be mathematically impossible to wrap up a title halfway through the year. Bells and Brazil should not be worth as many points as Pipe.

  • SK8dog says:

    Kelly and Tommy Lee are blood brothers..

  • Selly Klater says:

    Good analysis of the situation(s) at hand Lewis. However, I will be less interested in reading this type of website once October rolls around and OB picks up.

  • Generic name says:

    @Lewis - where did you surf the south swell?

  • Angry Villager with Pitchfork says:

    I try to make it a point to avoid stabbing Ballz or Penisz with my razor sharp pitchfork. Then again, I did drive it violently into Scott Bass.

  • Ballz says:

    Interesting criticism of pseudonym coming from….Raychild? What the fuck is that? The unclaimed bastard child of Ray Charles? The last time I heard someone talking about lapping ballz, it ironically came from Chris Cote. Chris Cote, are you the bastard child of Ray Charles?

  • Ballz says:

    To prove that I’m an equal opportunity ball garlger, I thought Chris Cote did a pretty good job interviewing at the US Open. The Aussie fuckwit providing commentary for the majority of it, on the other hand, was utter crap. What is that guys’ name? During the tow-at expression session, one of the commentators noted that it was the largest surf in which he had seen surfers doing to-ats. The Aussie nimrod was taken aback and said something to the effect of, “Really? What about Jaws or Mavericks?”

  • Ballz says:

    gargler…guy’s name… doing tow-ats

  • GOT IT says:

    if kelly is the greatest surfer of all time……why bother with any fucking contest tour that includes 5 contenders and a very large pack of monkeys.

    why not make it like boxing….kelly’s team picks the venue and negotiates the terms for a 1 full day of competition between the Reigning World Champ (Holding the Belt) and whomever the contender may be that the Title Holder agrees to compete against.

    This gives the belt holder and his management the option to pick whomever they think will make the most interesting competition that will put on the best display of performance…

    You could have an under card as well…..to fill time in between the best of 3 (1) hour heats.

    Picture Kelly vs Parko with the conditions that were just experienced in JBAY for 3 1 hour sessions, with an undercard of Jordy vs Dane…..

    Drop the tour all together and structure it around title bouts and interesting matchups that will never be lost because there wasn’t enough waves.

    Package it for PPV online and a television Deal.


  • Taj's Burro™ says:

    Face it. Surfers are capitalists. We will go with the highest bidder. The ASP, no help from Mailman, treated us like kept women. Underpaid, and under their thumb.

    Kelly saw it all in the many decades he was on tour. He’s doing the right thing.

    Without the surfers, there would be no tour. No reason for crowds to flock to venues like the US Open.

    Visionaries like Bob Hurley sees this. K( is lining them up as we speak.

    It Is A Done Deal.

    As to comparing pro surfers to “figure skaters, or break dancers”. Since when does the ice or the sidewalk in which dancers roll around on change for each ride? Or determine the outcome of the “dance”?

    Mailman. Like a USPS government employee, better lobby the feds and or employe thru campaign contributions a politician or three to help keep your day job.

  • ross says:

    I believe GOT IT (above) is on to something although I would prefer a free webcast with advertising mixed in such as it goes presently. Dane, Kelly, AI, Parko, Mick, Jordy maybe I missed some but really those are the only ones I’m interested in watching.

  • Taj's Burro™ says:

    The revolution will not be televised.

    But the outcome will.

  • Ballz says:

    What about having a separate division exclusively for Brazis? Points will be scored for sticking your ass out, keeping your feet wide apart and claiming as much as possible. Also, there will be 12 man heats. The boat will pull up to the spot and unload all 12 at once.

  • Taj's Burro™ says:

    Good point, GOT IT.

    The customers that the ASP are targeting go to the beach on weekends. They could not care what goes down out in the water at any given break. Never did. Never will.

    What they will pay to see are big name, top of the heap surf stars going head to head.

    If they wanted to take in the bottom feeders, they could do so on a daily basis at any given beach.

    K9 tour changes everything. They arelistening to the market place.

    Kelly’s way gives the customer what they want.

  • Taj's Burro™ says:

    BTW, Lewis. K9 was not slapping the water, mad at the ocean. He was slapping it, mad at himself.

    He IS the Zen dinkum.

    He’s never blaming the ocean.

    He knew he had previously bogged a few of his waves that would have put him in the position to win each of those bloody heats.

  • Taj's Burro™ says:

    All of the bottom rung ockers lose heats because they’re horse. They are no hopers. They suck balls.

    K9 loses a heat not because he was outsurfed. Kelly loses only when K-dinkum makes a minor mistake.

  • Myles says:

    @GOT IT. you Nailed it…

    the underlings guys battle it out leading up to the Championship bout- to take on the champ in real waves for 10 rounds or 2 hour heat.

    Then it voted on by the surfers competing and judges. Equally balanced since the judges have no idea about anything beyond a barrel or check turn.

  • Blasphemy Rottmouth says:

    Since they refer to the circus at Teahupoo as a gladiator pit, why don’t they have sudden death heats? The winner advances to face his next competitor, whilst his vanquished foe gets filleted with a barbed wire-lined mallet. Or, perhaps piston-raped with a rusty claw hammer.

    Strung up from a tree by his leash.

    Upside down.


    I believe I would watch this.

  • Have two tours like mailman brought up. Keep the same old A.S.P. tour and have a new insane espn/Kelly /Bong Challenge/ Backdoor Shootout type of tour. Maybe a Grand Prix style of 5 contests max. It might not be too trying for the top guys schedules, look how many guys surf a handfull of q.s.’s and go on bogus company modeling shoots. It wouldn’t be that hard if the change of climate started slow but in a radical way. Four Bong style challenges, an ecletic group of 16 insane surfers going for Hurley U.S. Open $$$$ x 3 would open alot of eyes quick. ESPN with Kelly’s input might be able to pull it off for H.D. flat screens across the globe. Money talks loud.

  • The Nug says:

    Involving ESPN in the decision making process for any tour is a mistake. A colossal one. Have them purchase the broadcasting rights for TV and web and that’s it. Period. The ASP has never had any real marketing people. The ASP or any arm thereof is no match for the soulless bastards in Bristol, CT. The will get eaten alive. Surfing will suffer in the short and long term. I say we bring back Dave Parameter and have him run a new tour.

  • The Nug says:

    or Dave Parmenter…

  • ReB says:

    will Lew pull a Ron Sugar ?

    Ron was cast into the wilderness at TRW, well more like he quit because they gave the CEO-ship to Dave Cote, a Jeffrey Immelt protege from GE.

    Dave brought us TRW engineers Six Sigma and then split for Honeywell.

    well, old Ron Sugar ended up going to Northrop Grumman … as CEO. Northrop Grumman then bought TRW.

    will Lew return someday to buy Surfline ?

    if so i want a corner office with a view.

  • no1 says:

    lewis’ slates review is very astute. there are too many problems with a complete breakaway. if they have any sense they’ll all get round a table and sort it. the asp will be stronger for the challenge and input. check F1 politics this year. way more at stake there in $$’s, but they realised they needed the existing structure, all they really needed to do was talk.
    the solution is simple. round table discussions, a few subtle changes in the backroom and QS premiere events held in quality waves to bring up the standard of the newbies.
    i like the sport provided by ‘lesser’ surfers taking out the golden boys. pires, aritz lowenbrau, even the might pony tail holmes, and bourez fisting fanny. all provided good value. if you want to watch the same overpaid elite 16 surfing perfect waves with nothing on the line but more bucks they don’t need, buy a fkn dvd. sport is all the better for the underdog and the upsets they create. think potter, occy, elko in their glorious youth. if you could go back in time would you exclude them and change great moments in history? a new clique would be like loveboat.all you’d need is a poison dwarf in a white suit. wonder if pat o connel still has that white wetty…
    as for more comps, do we really need a fkn contest at every beach every weekend? jesus

  • no1 says:

    and Nugs is right. if a media corp want in, they bid for it through the appropriate channels, same as sky or any other. if you’re gunna drop your pants may as well drop them for the fat media baron with the biggest wallet.

  • Dave Mailman says:

    Who let my burro out of the barn?!?

  • Chris Cote says:

    Official word from Kelly Slater regarding “new tour”: “It’s not my tour.”
    Official word from ESPN regarding “new tour” : No comment

    Whatever mag (or blogosphere) breaks the news will be cool.

    I hope it’s me.

    News flash: Kelly was ripping at the US Open

  • Shreddy Roosevelt says:

    I think the new tour should be like the Laugh Olympics, where surfers go head to head on their chosen surfing crafts. This way Dave Parmenter can not only run the new tour, he can compete against Slater on a shortboard and Knost on a hull in giant Wedge surf on his SUP, the notable ancient Hawaiian surf ritual.

  • ODB says:

    GOT IT is onto something… its the kind of idea that could draw some interest from the uncleaned masses via ESPN. Since that seems to be the goal of revamping the tour right? Those pro surfing guys need more recognition no doubt, but I don’t want that to translate into more public interest and more uncleaned masses crowding my lineup. Fuck that. Is pro surfing really on a crux in 2009?? or is this blog overstating the need for change to make it (the blog) more relevant?

  • Dave Mailman says:

    Who fed Taj’s Burro the magic mushrooms that were growing mold?!? The furry four legged friend is tripping. Hauling Taj’s boardbags got you in a vindictive mood? I’ve never said the ASP is perfect. If I chose to get more involved than simply announcing events, it is because I saw things that I thought should be changed, and little by little things are changing for the better. As no1, the Nug, Jiblet Gravy and sad realization all mention (among others here and on many other blogs), unless K9 is using this as leverage to force change, he’s just shitting in the pot that has put the title “9xWorldChamp” next to his name. He should work within the system to effect change instead of trying to tear down the walls and starting over again. BUT this argument could all be a moot point as I read in a recent post (can’t remember where ASL/Stab?) that it would be the ASP Top 8 plus 8 Wild Cards. This would into the ASP Specialty event criteria and the results filmed and sent to the masses, so it looks like in the end everyone wins.

    PS: AVwP, please reconsider giving Taj’s Burro a little poke for me? Thanks.

  • ReB says:

    i wonder if we’ll ever see Masters competition heats between Curren, Occy, and Slater.

    both Occy & Curren can compete in Masters because they’re retired, right ?

  • Dave Mailman says:

    Lewis, I must apologize. I always get goaded into responding to the attacks on my person and personal views before I get around to complimenting you for another job well done. It’s late here in France, so I won’t go into the details (you know what I’m talking about anyway since you wrote them), but this piece of work shows how much knowledge of surfing and understanding of humanity you really have. Bravo.

    It’s going to be a long wait until K9 wins Trestles… How much prize money do you all think Hurley is going to throw down for first place there?

  • Dave Mailman says:

    ReB, Masters is 35+ but there has been talk of upping the age categories. But, yes, theoretically, Occy, Curren and Kelly could meet up in Masters competition… if there was a company willing to step up and sponsor it.

  • funkman says:

    KS was on espn top 10 plays last night. From the anchor: “Kelly Slater is scheduled to visit us.”

    The filter on these comments is a bit tight.

  • Titwit says:

    Hurley US Open of Surfing® in the USA of America™… okay

  • Eric Hogetz says:

    Matthew Tinley…the man behind the new tour is an absolute fuckwit…


  • Jason Relva says:

    Holy Fuck! Is that link for real???


    Promotion firm America Presents down for count

    By Dan Rafael, USA TODAY

    Denver-based promotional company America Presents burst on the scene in 1996 with the signing of Olympic gold medalist David Reid and quickly established itself as a force.

    It secured an exclusive deal to televise fights on Fox Sports Net and had contracts with top fighters such as David Tua, Hector Camacho Jr. and Joel Casamayor.

    Now it’s going down in flames under a heap of unpaid bills and lawsuits from fighters.

    “We’re going through a tough time, but we still have some good fighters,” says embattled owner Mat Tinley. “I’m doing the best I can under difficult circumstances.”

    Jeff Fried, the company attorney who took over day-to-day operation after Tinley forced president Dan Goossen to resign in August, had to personally guarantee that about $150,000 in bills and purses will be paid for back-to-back shows Thursday (ESPN) and Friday night (ESPN2) in Phoenix.

    “I don’t want to comment on that one,” Tinley says.

    But Fried, who says Tinley owes him nearly $100,000 for…

  • Things that make you go hmmm says:

    Agree w-mailman. Kelly wins Lowers.

    Also very much agree w-Pacnw about how much it sucks to have 2 months go by between contests. You don’t see other sports have 2 month breaks mid-season. Also agree that it SUCKS to have the world title sewn up mid-season. How shitty is it that Pipe has only influenced the world title race 2 out of (I think) the past 10 seasons.

    Also sunset should be back on the tour.

    But mostly I would like to say how meaningless this all is compared to the pile of shit that our country is sinking into. i don’t know about the rest of you but I myself cannot relate to these fucking spoiled pro surfer punks who can barely put together a sentence while being interviewed. How great would it be to go into a restaurant and have some former spoiled asshole pro bussing your table? Or to walk into Costco and see some of the North Shore enforcers stacking boxes for $8 an hour and then get off work after an 8 hour shift and be too tired to surf?

    And why isn’t fucking Anthony Ruffo in prison? Is the judge in Santa Cruz afraid he will never get another wave at the Lane if he puts that Meth dealing dopehead away? WTF? If I was caught dealing meth AND pot I would be getting cornholed daily right now by a big black mofo who wouldn’t care how stylish my roundhouse was. I guess Santa Cruz IS the real surf city.


  • With the sorrowful exception of the sophomoric allusion to Michel Bourez claiming his shit, this is the first non-vanilla-wafer-custard-pudding-bastard-fuckery post from Lewis in . . . ????? . . . ever?


  • ReB says:

    i thought they had the Masters every year already.

    did they lose their sponsor ?

  • Hugh G. Rection says:

    Good contests are like good swells, they rarely happen when you want them to. I will bet KS is going to force JP to end the year(and win the title) under his shadow. JP is boring me to death with his bullshit stupid fucking grin.

  • The Goosenthat Lays the Golden Eggs says:

    I cant be convinced otherwise- that every long financially suffering judge on the ASP panel has not, at least, been subconsciously aware while judging a Kelly heat, that his success in the heat contributes to the growth of their industry and helps to fund their retirement. Fark, some of these guys virtually volunteered for decades. You can only hope Lex looks after them in a way that they have appeared to look after him on ‘occasions’.

  • The Goosenthat Lays the Golden Eggs says:

    I agree, Parko looked a bit like T.F circa 1977.

  • God says:

    To spice things up, why not start the tour at Pipe in January and end it at Sunset in November/December? Then, take out Brazil and one of the Euro events. Then, add 23 strippers to the card. Not just at one event, but for the entire tour. They could travel with the guys and their only job, other than stripping, would be to get in the guys’ heads. Imagine Parko stressing about whether his wife thinks he’s fucking strippers at J-Bay right before his heat? Or, imagine Jordy ass-fucking one of the cougar strippers right before his heat. Then, allow ESPN to put it all on the web, but not before Makuakai, Kala and the rest of the Hawaiians fight it off on a mat right in the middle of whatever beach they’re at with the local bjj guys. I’d pay to watch pros surfing J-Bay, while strippers strip and mokes jitz each other all at the same time. Now that I think of it, what’s Slater’s agent’s name? I’ve got a call to make.

  • Okay, so I got a Wordpress account so I can have that cool avatar thingy, and now I can’t figure out how to make it work when I leave a comment here.

    Anyone know how d’fuck this is supposed to work?

  • Chicken Skin says:

    Posted by Doggy Style on Fantasy Surfer message board (Regarding Brett Simpson):

    “Brett’s surfing is very precise and and quasi-modern, but he is nothing more than the new, improved, pre-big-wave-expoilts Mike Parsons. Don’t believe me, watch this:


    (Seriously. Imagine if Parsons couldn’t surf big waves but could do air reverses . . . he’d be Brett Simpson.)

    Perfect comparison!

  • Truth says:

    forget art, music, hair, board spray jobs, self movies.

    Slater vs. whoever wherever the old guys just get older and can’t beat curren, who would be the soul judge of heats.

    to be the man….you have to beat the man….WHHOOOOO!!

    Slaten inevitable no matter which tour format is used.

  • Taj's Burro™ says:

    Too funny.

    It was only a few decades ago that pro surfers had had enough of what that old fartknocker Walter Cronkite was pushing nightly…. ‘And that’s the way it is”…. and got on with “Bustin’ Down the Doors”.

    It was only months ago the film documenting the event was reworked and remarketed.

    If you listen closely, you can hear the sound of Mailman pooping his Frenchie pant as the ASP becomes quite irrelevant.

    Veritas odium parit.

  • Jamon Bagel says:

    Mailman, don’t keep asking AVWP to do things. You’ll make him angry…wait, he’s already angry. Holy shit! Enraged Villager with Pitchfork!! First Scott Bass, now God knows who!!! [God, what's up with that?].

    I’m checking out before I get toasted.

  • Jamon Bagel says:

    PS, what about that the SUP guy at Wedge? Just an excuse to paddle out via the harbor entrance, ride a shoulder, then go back to the yacht? Don’t know, wasn’t there. But even from where I was, far far away, that seemed like one overhyped, sloppy, washed out mess of a swell, at least in SoCal. Is this sandwich mistaken?

  • @ Taj’s Burro™

    Vos es a plagiarius!

  • Jamon Bagel says:

    PPS, No disrespect to the deceased or anything. Except in case of Scott Bass.

  • Robert's Your Mother's Brother says:

    @ God.

    Comment of the eon. But then, you’d expect that from God.

  • Robert's Your Mother's Brother says:

    PS - I’m proud to be associated with you bastards. Fucking hilarious.

  • Stu says:

    Never thought I’d say it, but God’s the man! Ok, Mark, we can be friends after all.

  • Hmmmmm. Interesting. I believe I have found a new toy.

  • SmyrnaJeff says:

    @ Stu

    Mark is taking a break just like all the pro’s but I will let him know what you said.

  • Ballz says:

    The guy who SUP’d Wedge should be arrested. Guaranteed to lose it in the inevitable pounding. A loose SUP board is an instrument of death at wedge.

  • trauzersnake says:


    1.) I gotta say that ride was pretty gnarly
    2.) If you watch that video more closely I think you’ll see that he (the SUPer) nearly got speared by the surfer’s board on the wave behind as he jumped off and ditched right in front of the SUPer.

    No fan of SUP’s….but I’m just sayin’

    @BR-Scorpions Blackout….that rules bro.

  • trauzersnake says:

    I’d put a picture of my cock up there, but they don’t make a wide-angled enough telephoto….hehehe..FUCK OFF!!!

  • Just messing around with avatars. Please bear with me. I’ll bring the ruckus later.

    Maybe this avatar will be better…

    Me likey.

  • Damn. It’s taking longer for my new avatar pictures to upload on WordPress than it does for Trauzersnake to get an erection when he roams the Blackie’s beach break every evening after his tea and crumpets.

    Wordpress sucks.

    Blogger is much better.

  • trauzersnake says:

    What about that video of G Long at puerto?? What do you asshats have to say about that (if he dosen’t end up arrested for dealing meth and weed, anyway)

  • Surfing Terrorist says:

    “bored with er/ing/tws et all says:
    July 28, 2009 at 10:07 am

    I know this isn’t a new topic but is any one else completely bored with all of the major surf publications? I used to read every one cover to cover now I can barely get myself to look at the pictures let alone read the absolutely boring as articles (and this is while taking a dump). How about Lewis as editor of Surfer?”

    Right on the money. Surf publications fucking blow now. There’s nothing informative or insightful. If anything, I want to punch the surfers in the mags in the fucking nuts because they’re in paradise and I’m not.

    Lewis, first surfing mag to hire you on full-time as Editor-in-Chief is the first surfing mag in a long time to earn my respect. Chris Cote still looks like Homer Simpson.

  • Chicken Skin says:

    Posted by R.W. Van Winkle on Fantasy Surfer:

    7/28/2009 10:43:38 PM

    Fact: The WQS is not a good springboard for entry into the WCT.

    Q: Why should guys who are best at mixing it up in four-man heats in mediocre waves be granted entry into the “Dream Tour”?

    Maybe it’s the WQS that needs to change; not the WCT?

    The WQS is the reason we see guys like Gabe Kling, Nathaniel Curran, and Jihad Kohdr–guys who are great surfers in marginal waves–flail on the WCT, a tour decided in waves of consequence that require superior skill in order to be ridden well: Teahupoo, Pipe, (Arica), (Cloudbreak), etc . . . All waves at which guys like Brett Simpson and Jadson Andre are sure to embarass themselves–much as Rabbit called Jihad an embarassment at Teahupoo his rookie year when he sat too wide to catch a set, raced the barrel if it ever appeared on the inside waves he attempted, and avoided pulling in at all costs.

    We shouldn’t have to watch guys like that at waves like Teahupoo or Pipe.


  • Dave Mailman says:

    ReB, ISA does a Masters comp (last winner Robbie Page), but ASP hasn’t had a Masters comp since 2003 in Makaha…

  • trauzersnake says:

    surfing terrorist=licker of Lewis’ balls

  • Trauzersnake is gayer than Elton John fucking his own Elton John Real Doll Replica.

  • And the Surfing Terrorist is gayer than Freddie Mercury’s old butt plug being dry-hammered into Perez Hilton’s bung hole…

    … not that there’s anything wrong with that…

    … per se…

  • Allow me to set this up…

  • Yeah, Bitch!! says:

    100!! You salivating sausage-suckling illiterate idiot savants!

  • Ballz says:

    I’m a complete bag lapping douche whistle! Being the LS sycophant that I cleary am, phrases such as “fuckwit” and “custard fuckery” will now be part of my daily vernacular! Just making sure everyone gets the memo…

    PS. Sorry raychild for bashing your screen name. It’s one of the best I’ve ever seen.

  • john says:

    By the way, all those tow-ats going down at Pascuales is nothing more than GLORIFIED WAKEBOARDING ! Whatever happened to paddle power ??

  • Mo says:

    Taylor Steeles Next Movie? - http://bit.ly/9TM5C

  • Britons says:

    Lewis didn’t come up with the word fuckwit, you bollocks fuck.

  • Peo! says:


    Good job with the power rankings!

  • Ballz says:

    I am somebody! Raychild adopted my pseudonym! I feel like Steve Martin in the Jerk when he finds his name in the phonebook. Ray Child’s unsuccessfully aborted man child penned a clever comment in which I, Ballz, took myself to task for being a ball lapping sycophant. For future reference, if you see me referring to myself as a douche whistle while concommitantly praising Ray Child’s fetus, don’t question the authenticity of the comment for a moment.

  • Ballz says:

    Damnit. Ray Charles. Forget it. Skirmishes are lame. Carry on with surf commentary.

  • raychild says:

    LOL. Good form Ballz. Skirmishes are very lame, especially those of the message board variety.

  • Myles says:

    It is sad the the QS focuses on quantity rather than quality. The guys that eventually make the tour are beach break small wave surfers that rarely make an impact on the CT. Though the next crop like Owen Wright and Brett could do something eventually.

    Why is the ASP based in Australia? That’s half the problem and half the money when you convert the dollar, what big media company’s are based over there. What a joke. Yes, they have so small presence here in the states but they’re giving the rights away to the big three surf companies who are more than happy to put a lame broadcoast while plugging their company. With half wit commentary bythere corporate monkey’s like Dino, Todd Kline. Why can’t the ASP sell the rights to a big player like ESPN then have naming sponsor’s like Quik, and Bong? Because there based out of Australia

    Why isn’t Slater dealing with the ASP head on. He can’t get #10 if there isn’t a tour? And how can you take the top 8 seed from the ASP and put them on the new tour? Strange shit.

    Here’s a quick list of non tour guys that should be on the CT and would kill it if the tour had quality waves at every event

    Rob Machado (should have been granted the injury wildcard but he didn’t get on his knees and beg, good on him)
    J.O.B. (blows up when it big and hallow)
    Marzo (almost had it through the trials at Chopes)
    Sean Holmes
    Dusty Paine
    Owen Wright
    Dion A.
    Koby A.

  • God says:

    Wrong, wrong, wrong. Bruce has already shown he’s not a true elite CT surfer, Dorian, Machado, Manoa, Koby and Holmes (as much as I love him) are all either out-of-date or one-trick ponies. Marzo’s too scattered to survive the tour (not his fault, of course, but that’s the way it is) and Yadin, Dion and JOB just aren’t there. Owen will make it and Dusty should, but that’s it.

  • Ex-Boxer says:

    MATTHEW TINLEY…The Man Behind the New Tour…is a Crooked Douchebag

    Promotion firm America Presents down for count

    By Dan Rafael, USA TODAY

    Denver-based promotional company America Presents burst on the scene in 1996 with the signing of Olympic gold medalist David Reid and quickly established itself as a force.

    It secured an exclusive deal to televise fights on Fox Sports Net and had contracts with top fighters such as David Tua, Hector Camacho Jr. and Joel Casamayor.

    Now it’s going down in flames under a heap of unpaid bills and lawsuits from fighters.

    “We’re going through a tough time, but we still have some good fighters,” says embattled owner Mat Tinley. “I’m doing the best I can under difficult circumstances.”

    Jeff Fried, the company attorney who took over day-to-day operation after Tinley forced president Dan Goossen to resign in August, had to personally guarantee that about $150,000 in bills and purses will be paid for back-to-back shows Thursday (ESPN) and Friday night (ESPN2) in Phoenix.

    “I don’t want to comment on that one,” Tinley says.

    But Fried, who says Tinley owes him nearly $100,000 for services and unpaid expenses, is reaching into his own pocket to make sure the shows featuring Camacho and James Toney come off.

    “For over two months ESPN and (ESPN boxing chief) Bob Yalen stood behind me with these shows,” says Fried, who is contemplating resigning. “I told Bob I would personally ensure the shows would go on, and I can’t let them down.”

    The ESPN license fee will be paid directly to Fried instead of America Presents.

    Fred Sternburg, the vice president and publicity whiz credited for helping America Presents establish itself, left last week because he hadn’t been paid since Jan. 31. He filed a formal demand for payment of wages with Colorado’s Labor Department.

    “I have no problem with Mat telling me he can’t afford to keep me on salary,” said Sternburg, who says he’s owed more than $15,000. “My complaint is I haven’t been paid for services rendered.”

    Tinley says Sternburg will be paid. “I think the world of Fred. I think whoever hires him gets the best publicist in boxing. I wish he was still here, but I understand. Fred is one of the classiest guys going.”

    According to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, America Presents owes money to other employees, bounced a check on junior featherweight Wayne McCullough and still owes him more than $12,000 from a Jan. 12 bout in Las Vegas. In addition, America Presents owes Top Rank $13,000 after Top Rank paid off a debt owed to DiBella Entertainment. In return, Lou DiBella agreed to put a fight on his March 9 HBO card featuring Top Rank fighter Juan Manuel Marquez vs. Robbie Peden, an America Presents boxer.

    “Any legitimate bills, I will do my level best to make sure they’re paid. I want to be honorable and get them paid,” says Tinley, who is being sued by Casamayor, Ben Tackie, Alex Trujillo and Lawrence Clay-Bey.

    Tinley says the problems stem from free spending during Goossen’s tenure, where $1,000 hotel suites were the norm, and a disastrous promotional contract with Mike Tyson.

    “We took a severe body blow when we didn’t get paid by Mike Tyson on Oct. 13, 2001,” Tinley says of the $900,000 he claims Tyson owes the company from the Brian Nielsen fight. “That’s like taking a year’s worth of our operating budget. That’s a severe blow.”

  • Dave Mailman says:

    I am the first person to complain about the quality of the surf and surfing at many comps on the WQS. I do agree that there are a few too many average beach break comps (that only draw public interest by paying appearance fees to a few big names and throwing down with $100K for 1st), but no one is forced to enter them or watch them.
    You keep your 7 best results on the WQS. If you are ripping and get a result at every comp you can make the World Tour by surfing these 6*s and Primes only: Tasmania, Margaret River, Lowers, Thurso, Pasta Point, Hossegor, Durban, Lanzarote (Canaries), Steamer Lane, Haleiwa, Sunset Beach. That’s 11 comps (25% of the schedule) in quality wave locations (only 2 beachies). If you aren’t rated high enough to get into the Primes you can always train in 1 to 5 stars in Cape Town, Azores, Fernando de Noronha, Puerto, El Gringo (Chile), El Confital (Canaries), Ala Moana and Sunset (again). So out of the 41 events on the WQS this year basically half are held at quality surf spots (more or less) at the right time of year. Of the other 20 or so comps left if you’re forced to surf in them or work on them, just cross your fingers and pray. Remember, every dog has its day!

  • Dave Mailman says:

    I almost forgot. To those who say the ‘QS only turns out shit beach break surfers, remember that every surfer in the Top 45 (except those few gray beards around since before the ‘QS) came through from the WQS. I agree that the World Tour should be cut back to Top 36 or Top 24 so there is a higher level of surfing from the start of the comp, but don’t blame the ‘QS if Nathaniel or Jihad can’t surf Teahupo’o! Blame them! Fuck, Fanning couldn’t surf the place properly until the year before he won the title! And what about Aritz’ performances schooling locals and Top 45ers alike at Pipe and Tahiti?!? The QS is a necessary evil (that does allow a few question marks to qualify every year), but if you are any good and have have a brain, you can surf good waves and qualify for the world tour.

  • The Goose ........that Lays the Golden Eggs says:

    Good point Mailman. Never looked at it like that.

  • Shredman says:

    Lots of rumors on this “new tour”, has anyone read a press release from ESPN or anyone else? I have been trying to find one out there somewhere to no avail. It sounds cool if the surfers can start making some real money and fans don’t have to watch the boring, poo-stance surfers in the bottom of the 44 mucking up the webcasts.

  • surfy surfy says:

    The surfer profile photoshops are get better and better with each contest.

  • marsh says:

    The Soul Of Its Own World Tour
    Coming To A Sphere Near You. 4 Seasons, 10 events, 8 Paddle in events, 2 per season plus 2 Special Death Defying Tow in events!
    32 competitors, The Complete 16, capable of all & more, plus the top 12 qualifiers from the ASP tour & 4 invitees from God knows where, round out the 32 who will compete in the most challenging conditions our planet can provide. Athletes, not surviving to see who makes fire first or able to gather better than the rest on a Hollywood set. No, these are unlike others who challenge themselves & the elements, not on track or field, but against the Supreme Force, the Giver of Life, Our Mother Ocean. A plethora of potential sites will be at hand with permits in place. Modern tech. allows our athletes to be flown to their accommodations, whether on land or at sea, depending on location to meet the coming challenge. Contestants on call, ready & mobile at the moment. No waiting period, it’ll be pumping, and the world will be watching, as we search our planets’ surface for its strongest pulse, its unscripted pure energy, to be tapped like never before in a competitive format. Where will our athletes be swept off to next? What exotic isle, dangerous reef pass, or unknown slab will test the best? We’ll take you to places where dreams are made & broken. Wave riders from all points will froth at the arenas, pushing pearls shoreward. And of course Current Footage will be available on demand.
    As the Endless Summer touched a spark, so will the Soul Of Its Own World Tour, creating an audience unsure what’s up, but unable to deny it. Surfing, the creator & father of action sports, and soon to be spokesman of a planet gone astray, will usher in a wave of consciousness that only a surfer understands.
    The ASP will be what it always was, what it is, proving grounds for the best competitive surfing & will continue to spawn & develop future World Champions. So calm down boys, it’s all there, better than ever. The ASP will update & integrate the Q.S. 100 vying to become 1 of the 12 disciples on next years World Tour as only ESPN can bring you.
    32 competitors. I’d like to see the bottom 16, including invitees, go 4-man, 4- 45min-1hour heats. The hassle is important, brings out character, creativity, the interference possibilities, the bump & grind, and when its pumping, the playing field expands, plenty for all. Remember these boys are professionals. The victors will pit themselves against #9 to 16, so impersonal. When its game on 4-man rules continue, its called Action Sports, with 4– 1hour heats. 8hrs. in, you are left with the cream for day 2. Might be boring live, if not a purist, but with slight delay we got chicken dinner. Live cast a must, in ESPN we trust that this will be more than another sporting event wedged into the grid, where’s Tesla, wave master. To be Hollygood takes a special sort. Do you see a problem here? Na, me neither. This is their last chance to paddle out, it’s hot & glassy, & there’s one coming their way. No scores called here, keep your own score & give it your best shot, watch your ass & keep your head up, quit thinking you need to know something, you got a watch, that’s all you need. It’s no longer what you need, you need only to tear it up! You’ll know who won soon enough. So cut the crap fools, school’s out, it’s your J.O.B. join our brotherhood, the Brotherhood Of Surfing. Well that might be to much, depends on the fence you sit on, I guess.
    1st place Tour Champion receives 500k for his efforts
    $250k You figure out the points.
    2nd 100k =3rd 50k =5th 25k =9th 15k 10k for the rest
    That’s a 100k all expense paid trip around the world for the rest, if you got the nuts to tow, with incentives, for showing up. If you think you’re worth more than that, let’s see it!
    OK, that’s 830k, plenty enough prizes for the 1st go round. That leaves 670k per event to do things right & look towards the future.
    So what say you, f#ck off, or is it our time?
    Brought to you by

  • board worker says:

    Slaters pick for the tour is fine by me. If you don’t think that Kelly can decide who the best surfer in the world is who can? Some might say that he would be biased towards himself and his mates but obviously Kelly has a reputation to keep up so that couldn’t happen.

    Also it’s a much better idea that a handfull of surfers earn a fortune rather than quite a lot making a decent living. That way the top dogs can decide how to reinvest the money for the good of the sport rather than a load of guys spending it on wine women and song.

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